If you visited a popular anti-Trump protest website, Jeff Session’s Department of Justice wants your IP address.
In a terrifying move, the DOJ has served a warrant on web hosting platform DreamHost demanding the IP addresses of all 1.3 million people who visited DisruptJ20.org, the information hub for Inauguration Day protests.
Visiting a website is not a crime, so why does the DOJ need to know who visited this website? It’s either a fishing expedition, an attempt to send a very chilling message, or an effort to accumulate the names of Trump opponents.
The DOJ and prosecutors in DC are hellbent on retaliating against the J20 protesters, who were tear gassed, kettled, and swept up in a mass arrest, along with journalists and legal observers. Over 200 people are being charged with felony riot and other felonies, even though prosecutors admit that not everyone charged actually engaged in property destruction. They say that just by being part of a protest where others committed unlawful acts they should spend decades in prison.
And now, the net is being broadened even further, with a warrant asking for the IP addresses on the 1.3 million people who visited an anti-Trump website.
There is no legitimate law enforcement purpose for this warrant. We know very well that it’s real purpose is to chill speech, silence dissent, and make people afraid to speak out.