The record of our nation's response to the threat of political violence is unfortunately one of repeated infringements on the First Amendment and other constitutional principles. The Supreme Court has acknowledged that history abundantly documents the tendency of Government has benevolent and began its motives to show suspicion those who most fervently dispute its policies. This is by no means a problem unique to the United States. Our constitutional commitment to political and religious freedom has not protected us from recurring official abuses. With confounding regularity, our government has, in the name of protecting national security, subverted the very rights and liberties which make the defense of the Nation worthwhile. The Federal
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In 1994, the Clinton administration testified against a bill that would have made membership in Hamas a ground for exclusion, arguing that because Hamas engages in "widespread social welfare programs" as well as terrorism, one could not presume that a Hamas member was a "terrorist', without indulging in guilt by association. Yet by 1995, the Administration proposed to do just that for countless groups. The initial designations by the Secretary in October 1997 fulfilled that promise, including Hamas on the list."' Also on the list was the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, which the trial court in the LA 8 case found was involved in a wide range of lawful activities, including the provision of education, day care, health care and social security. Notably, the list did not include any group headed by Osama bin Laden, illustrating the limitations of such a designation process as an antiterrorism measure.
Three consequences flow from the Secretary of State's decision to designate a foreign entity as a terrorist organization: it is a crime for anybody to contribute money or other material support or resources to a designated group, even for its social, political or humanitarian activities;