“You Lie” vs Not Clapping

Joe Wilson, a U.S. congressman from South Carolina, showed his disagreement with a speech by President Obama in 2009 by yelling “you lie” in the middle of it. He was not tried for treason. So far as I know, although some disliked his interruption (for which he later apologized), no one even suggested treason.

According to the United States Constitution (Article 3, Section 3), “Treason against the United States shall consist only in levying war against them or in adhering to their enemies, giving them aid and comfort.”

How does a refusal to clap for President Trump’s State of the Union speech fit with the Constitution’s definition of treason?

Trump apparently didn’t come right out and say non clappers were treasonous, but he implied it. He used his “somebody” shield, as he often does. “Somebody” suggested treason, Trump said. He answered his alter somebody: “Why not?”

Some nations appear to have a low bar for treason. I’m not sure about North Korean law, but it probably doesn’t matter, since the leader, Kim Jong-un, appears to be the law. One certainly might expect death, with or without a trial, if they openly withheld clapping during one of his speeches.

President Trump appears to admire Kim, saying, “I can tell you this, a lot of people don’t like when I say it, but he was a young man of 26 or 27 when he took over from his father, when his father died. He is dealing with obviously very tough people, in particular the generals and others. And at a very young age he was able to assume power. A lot of people I am sure tried to take that power away. Whether it was his uncle or anybody else and he was able to do it, so obviously he is a pretty smart cookie.”

North Korea—are we there yet?

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