So to Speak transcript: Glenn Greenwald

June 21, 2016

Note: This is a unedited rush transcript. Please check any quotations against the audio recording.

Nico Perrino: In discussions about free speech issues, you’ll often hear people say something to the effect of, “I disapprove of what you say, but I’ll defend to the death the right to say it.” The quote is typically misattributed to the French Enlightenment thinker Voltaire, when in reality, it was written by a Voltaire biographer named Evelyn Beatrice Hall to sort of encapsulate Voltaire’s beliefs. But for many free speech advocates like Voltaire and like those of us at FIRE, the quote accurately reflects how we go about our work. This belief was perhaps best exemplified by former ACLU executive director Aryeh Neier who, in 1977, defended the rights of the National Socialist Party of America – that’s the neo-Nazis – to host a march through the town of Skokie; Illinois after that march was initially blocked by local authorities. At the time, Skokie was home to one of the largest Jewish populations in America. In fact, one in six Skokie residents were Holocaust survivors or were related to one. Neier, himself, was Jewish and born in Berlin in 1937, no less. He narrowly escaped to England with his parents and sister when he was only two years old. However, most of the rest of his family was lost to Hitler’s ovens. But despite this, as an attorney in America, Neier stepped up to defend the neo-Nazis’ right to freedom of speech, no matter how despicable he thought that speech might be.

The case cost the ACLU tens of thousands of members. However, the organization and Neier ultimately prevailed, and the neo-Nazis were able to carry out their march in Skokie, although they ultimately never did. The case has come to be the exemplar of the breadth of America’s free speech protections. “Even the Nazis get free speech here,” people say. But why did Neier take on the case when there were non-Jews within the ACLU who could have handled it? Why is it important that we protect the free speech rights of even those with whom we vehemently disagree? Neier answers many of those questions in his seminal 1979 book Defending My Enemy: American Nazis in Skokie, Illinois, and the Risks of Freedom. It’s a book that’s very popular within the First Amendment community, and definitely within FIRE. We thought this topic of defending my enemy would be a good one to take up. So, over the course of the next two weeks, we’re going to interview two free speech advocates, Glenn Greenwald and David Baugh, both of whom stood up at various points in their lives to defend the free speech rights of those individuals with whom they vehemently disagreed.

We might even make this a continuing theme of So to Speak and pick it up from time to time. Today’s interview is with Glenn Greenwald. Glenn is best known for his role in court in aiding the National Security Agency revelations that came out in 2013 from Edward Snowden. But before he became a groundbreaking and award-winning journalist with Salon, the Guardian and his current outfit, the Intercept, he was a lawyer; and not just a lawyer, a first amendment lawyer who, as a gay man of Jewish descent, defended the first amendment rights of neo-Nazis and White Supremacists, much like Aryeh Neier did in the 1970s. So, let’s begin this “Defending My Enemies” series with Glenn. Why did he become interested in constitutional law? Why did he take these neo-Nazi cases? And why is it important that free speech advocates defend the rights of their enemies? And just a quick show note before we begin, Glenn spoke with us from his home in Rio de Janeiro where he has multiple dogs. So, if you hear dogs barking in the background, that’s why. So, let’s begin. So, Glenn Greenwald, thanks for coming on the show today.

Glenn Greenwald: Thanks for having me; happy to be here.

Nico Perrino: Absolutely. So, FIRE has following your work for a good amount of time now; especially on Twitter, you’re very active in the free speech conversation. When you were over at Salon, you wrote a lot of articles on free speech topics. But, something that really stood out to me was just one line in two profiles of you following the Snowden revelations about your time as a constitutional litigator defending the rights of neo-Nazis. And so, the show is about Defending My Enemies, and I wanted to talk with you about that time. But before we jump into that, I wanted to get a little bit of backstory. What got you interested in free speech issues generally?

Glenn Greenwald: I think that – not to be too kind of introspective or turn your podcast into some sort of therapy session – but, I think if you grow up and feel, in some way, alienated from or excluded by mainstream pieties, as I certainly did growing up as a gay teenager feeling like there was this majoritarian sentiment that was kind of hostile to me. And then at some point, I realized that this idea that a lot of people seemed to have, in fact seemed to hold it so fervently that they don’t even discuss or debate it. They think it’s beyond the realm of debate, namely that being gay is bad or it’s wrong, is something that I actually came to think itself was wrong. So, I think once life in some way leads you to start questioning pieties and orthodoxies, you realize how wrong pieties and orthodoxies can be, and that the only real outlet for challenging them and correcting their wrongness is to have the freedom to be able to question them and argue against them, no matter how many people believe them to be true. And then, when you start looking at history, you see the history of ideas and intellectual history, and see nothing but a series of ideas that, at one point, were just assumed to be so true that they shouldn’t even be questioned or debated, only for some subsequent generation or generations to realize that actually, they were completely wrong.

So, for me, the thing I think that triggered this passionate belief in free speech for me was this recognition that human beings are incredibly fallible, and there should never be any idea that people are so certain is correct that they are unwilling to have it challenged.

Nico Perrino: That’s actually interesting and maybe getting a little bit ahead of some other things I wanted talk about. But, one thing that FIRE sees on campus right now is that calls by students to censor opinions that might be offensive to minority groups, whether they be gays, for example, or members of ethnic minorities. Do you think this is wrong-headed and actually hurts the cause of other minorities?

Glenn Greenwald: It’s wrong-headed for so many reasons. First of all, the trajectory of minority rights in the United States, and, I would say, generally in the western world, is that minority groups begin as this kind of marginalized group, and they have to fight for their right to be treated better and then equally. And the way they fight for that is by making arguments, by persuading their fellow citizens, by engaging in the marketplace of ideas by protesting. All the things the First Amendment and concepts of free speech are intended to protect are the greatest assets to people who find themselves in the position of oppressed minorities, because those are the tools and the weapons that allow you to fight against this marginalization and oppression. And, certainly the history of LGBTs in the United States has been won very much of using these First Amendment rights in order to change people’s minds. That certainly was the history of African Americans and other racial minorities is using the right to protest and the right to speak out in order to change people’s minds.

So, of all the groups, of all of the factions that should be most vehemently interested in protecting those rights, it should be minority groups because those are their greatest friends. That’s the idea, the whole point of the First Amendment is to say, “We’re really afraid of what unjust majorities might do to minorities; and so, to protect against majoritarian oppression, we’re going to protect these rights and guarantee that everybody have them because these are the rights that protect minorities.” So, to see minorities then turn around and kind of wage war on those very rights, what should be their best friends, I think is really disturbing. And the other aspect of it is that – and this, of course, is always at the heart of the speech fight – which is that a lot of people who want to abridge free speech somehow convince themselves, and I genuinely find it baffling, but they somehow convince themselves that if they institutionalize a framework that says that certain ideas are going to be banished and people who express them will be punished, that somehow the ideas that are prohibited and banished are always going to be the ones that they dislike. And it never seems to occur to them that they’re really vulnerable once they institutionalize this framework that says certain ideas are to be banned and punished – that that can be turned around and used against them.

And particularly if you’re a minority; if you’re an LGBT citizen, or a Latino or an African-American, you’re particularly vulnerable to having majorities say that your ideas are now off-limits. You should be the last people who want to legitimize this idea that majorities have the right to suppress ideas because certainly it’s almost inevitable that that’s going to be used against you even if, at the moment, you think that you’re using it to your favor.

Nico Perrino: Yeah, and I think that’s exactly right. One of the things that first amendment free speech advocates have trouble responding to are calls from those who want to institute a censorship regime on or off campus who say, “Is there every going to be a point really where we’re going to want criticism of minorities? We’ve reached the end of history at this point, we’ve created this tolerant society; what good does having this speech exist – how does that push forward progress at all?” And, I really liked what you discussed in your article for Salon about Mayor Rahm Emanuel and, actually, some other city leaders across the countries’ ban of Chick-fil-A. You said, “Free speech rights mean that government officials are barred from creating lists of approved and disapproved political ideas and using the power of the state to enforce those preferences.” And, I think people are starting to realize the power that we’re giving these government officials if we give them these rights with the rise of people like Donald Trump who very explicitly said that he wants to go after journalists. So, how do you respond to that sort of argument that “how is this speech useful in any way at this point?”

Glenn Greenwald: Well, first of all, look at the Chick-fil-A example where Rahm Emanuel and a couple of other mayors and cities where gay rights are favored decided that they were going to punish businesses who didn’t believe in the kind of conventional view now on gay issues, which was to treat gay people equally. The owner of Chick-fil-A, as I remember, donated money to anti-gay causes, actually believed in the right of businesses to discriminate. And so, people cheered when Rahm Emanuel said, as the mayor, “I’m going to bar businesses from operating that have views that I dislike.” And the reason why that’s just so appalling to see people cheering something like that is because maybe that will lead to a good result for you in Chicago, but how about in Birmingham, Alabama, or Salt Lake City, Utah or other places where people still believe that homosexuality is immoral and that gay people are going to hell and don’t deserve equal rights? There are still a lot of places in the United States where those ideas prevail.

So, imagine a mayor of one of those places using their power that you’ve just now said that mayors get to use, saying, “You know what? I’m going to bar businesses from operating in my city whose owners give money to pro-gay causes, or who have anti-discrimination policies that treat LGBT employees equally with others.” I don’t see how you have any basis for objecting to mayors who do that, who punish businesses who have ideas that the mayors dislike and that the majority of the population of that city dislikes and be cheer when Rahm Emanuel does. The other thing that I think is so important is that to the questionable how is it ever unofficial to have a debate about, say, racial equality or the equality of sexual minorities? Whether you like it or not, there are a lot of people in the country and in the world who continue to harbor ideas about race, and sexual orientation, and gender equality and a whole variety of other topics that aren’t reflective of the majority view in the United States now on these questions. There are a lot of races in the United States, there are a lot of people who hold the view that LGBT citizens are unequal, or that homosexuality is immoral, or that women don’t deserve equal treatment in the workplace and a whole variety of views like that.

The Donald Trump campaign shows that, so do lots of other things. Why would you want to have an environment, especially on college campuses, which are supposed to be devoted having young people engage ideas and learn how to defend their views – but anywhere, why would you want to have a society that pretends that those ideas don’t exist? If you ban bad ideas, you don’t make them go away. If anything, you probably strengthen them because now, those people have a cause; they feel like they’re oppressed. They feel like they’re martyrs, and in some sense, they are oppressed because they are banned from expressing their ideas. I would much rather have bad ideas come out and breathe in the light so they can be engaged and critiqued and dissected, and you can change people’s minds, than have those people have to hide and sort of slink in the dark with their ideas where I think it becomes much more dangerous.

Nico Perrino: Yeah. FIRE co-founder Harvey Silverglate, who was a criminal defense attorney up in Boston – he has a Jewish background – he always says he wants to know who the Nazi is in the room so he knows not to turn his back to them. And FIRE President Greg Lukianoff always said that censorships, it’s like taking Xanax for your syphilis. It might make you feel better, but it won’t actually solve the problem. So, I want to get back to your time as a constitutional litigator. And if I’m correct, you spent some time defending the neo-Nazi Matthew Hale. I don’t know if there was any other defenses you put forth, but why did you take those cases when you could have worked in any other sort of law? I’m sure you had a ton of potential clients.

Glenn Greenwald: Yeah, I mean, the first case that I took was actually Matthew Hale had graduated law school, and he took the bar exam in the state of Illinois and he passed, and he had no criminal record. And he applied for admission to the bar, and the Character and Fitness Committee intervened and held a hearing and said that because of his political views, his racist political views, he lacked the requisite character necessary to be a member of the Illinois bar, and rejected his application. And, the reason I found that so disturbing, beyond what we’ve been discussing about this principle that people should never be punished for the content of their ideas, is because the model they were using of excluding people from practicing law due to their unpopular political ideas, was actually pioneered in the 1950s at the height of McCarthyism when a whole variety of people who belonged to the Communist party were denied admission to bar associations around the country, and were denied the right to earn their livelihood and practice law after graduating law school and passing the bar exam because of the content of their political views.

And so, of course you can say, “Well, I think that Communists have better views than racists,” although a lot of people wouldn’t think that. But, even if you think that, you should not want to endorse a framework or legitimate a framework that says that people can be denied their livelihood and be assessed to have bad character because a group of lawyers decides that they hold political views that are so toxic that it reflects on their character. And so, I got involved in that defense and then saw that there were a lot of other attacks on the free speech rights of neo-Nazis, and White Supremacists and extremist anti-immigration groups where a lot of lawsuits were being brought against these groups and tended to bankrupt them; but more so, to set precedent that says that if somebody has sufficiently bad ideas, they can be held liable for the consequences of those ideas. And again, that was a theory that was used in the 1960s by the states of Alabama and Mississippi to try and bankrupt the NAACP by saying their leaders give such inflammatory speeches that they inspire their followers to commit violence and burn down stores, and so people can be held liable for the consequences of their bad speech.

And the Supreme Court ultimately, in Claiborne vs. NAACP, in a great opinion said that the First Amendment doesn’t allow you to be held responsible for the consequences of your protected speech. And yet, they were waging war on that really critical free speech precedent by trying to apply it to the most hated people in society, which were neo-Nazis. And they realized that that’s the tactic, right? That when governments and other bodies of power want to legitimate a certain power that people may feel uncomfortable with, they always target the most unpopular people – the easiest case to sort of let it go. And that’s why if you want to defend those rights, you have to go to those places where people are expressing the worst and most unpopular views.

Nico Perrino: Was taking those cases a challenge? Did you have any trouble separating the person from the principle? What was the working relationship like, for example, with a guy like Matthew Hale?

Glenn Greenwald: There were interesting challenges because, obviously, the group that he led, which is the World Church of the Creator, railed against not just African-Americans, but Jews, was very homophobic, and yet, I was able to understand that I wasn’t representing or supporting their ideology, I was representing and supporting the first amendment. So, because I believed so much in free speech, I never really had a kind of conflict. There were times I had to read their materials or listen to them give depositions that I was defending, and they would say some really heinous things. But, as long as you understand why you’re doing this work, and I understood I was doing this work in order to ensure that there wasn’t this kind of erosion of free speech rights in these cases as a result of bad precedent, then for me, it was sort of a work of passion. And I’d get a lot of it pro bono, actually. I deducted it as my pro bono work – my contribution to the society that I did work for free because I believe so strongly in that cause.

Nico Perrino: And eventually, you got out of law, and I had read that you spent a lot of time in conservative chat rooms at one point, saying that you believe in the clash of ideas, and that in these chat rooms your ideas were meaningfully challenged. Is this sort of “clash of ideas” thing a thread throughout your life, starting with your time in law school, moving on through your legal career and on to your time as a writer, just engager in the political dialogue?

Glenn Greenwald: Well, that was actually a really formative experience that those conservative chat rooms that were sort of like the beginning of the internet. And, I remember there was my law school roommate – you know I went to law school in New York; I had gone to college in Washington. I was just like a young, gay man in my early 20s in Washington and New York; in these east coast sophisticated cities. So, I had this kind of caricatured view of conservatives, especially social conservatives in the middle of the country. And, my law school roommate was this woman who was dating this guy whose mother was this hardcore Rush Limbaugh supporter or listener. And she went and visited their house and saw that this woman was in these chat rooms, and it was a chat room sponsored by the National Review and the Heritage Foundation. So, we went in there kind of on a lark, basically to just cause trouble and make fun of them and just have a good laugh at the expense of what we viewed as these kinds of retrograde idiots. And we did do that at first; we just caused trouble and we laughed at them, and then we started actually being drawn in because a lot of them were extremely smart and very informed, and were good debaters.

And so, I started spending a lot of time debating with them, and it started challenging a lot of my preconceptions, things that I would have assumed were just unchallengeably true. I found myself having to defend it from a pretty formidable, intellectual attack. And then, the more time I spent in there, the better I got to know them as people, and then I actually went one time. I flew to Indiana for this hotel, and it was a kind of meeting of all these – and these weren’t like National Review New York conservatives, these were like middle of the country, megachurch, Rush Limbaugh social conservatives. And just like I regarded them at first, they regarded me. They knew I was young, and a lawyer in New York, and Jewish and gay and so, a lot of those barriers broke down and we actually kind of got to like each other, and a lot of the certainty and the smugness that I had in how I regarded people like that got really broken down. And, I realized that it was so much better to force yourself to engage in these kinds of challenges. Sometimes you’ll be more fortified in the rightness of your beliefs, and other times, you’ll start questioning yourself and changing your views or at least modifying them or being open to the fact that maybe you’re wrong.

And so, yeah, everything I’ve done in my life – I’ve studied philosophy, I was on the college and high school debate team – has very much been geared toward this kind of clash of opposing ideas as the ultimate test for who’s actually right and who’s actually wrong. And I’ve learned a lot from that, I’ve evolved a great deal as a result of that. And so, anything that suppresses that or tries to eliminate it in the name of righteousness and certainty I feel really pernicious and really dangerous, and often times, a lot bigger of a threat than the bad ideas themselves that people who think that way are trying to censor.

Nico Perrino: And more recently, of course, your work is famous for the privacy issues as a result of the Snowden revelations. One thread, I think, that’s been missing from that conversation is the nexus between privacy issues and free expression – the idea that a lack of privacy might have a chilling effect on free expression. Is that something that you can speak to, or have you seen that as a missing thread in this conversation?

Glenn Greenwald: Totally. I mean, first of all, there’s one obvious way that the lack of privacy threatens first amendment rights, which is if everybody is being monitored and there are records of your communications, it almost is impossible, for example, for confidential sources to come to journalists because metadata is being sort of monitored and the government always knows who’s speaking to everybody else. And so, it makes doing journalism almost impossible. I mean, you can’t have a free press in the context of a ubiquitous surveillance state. But, free speech is also just as threatened in less obvious ways, but I think in ways that are more important. And actually, I remember I had this experience – this was years before I ever worked with Edward Snowden – I remember I wrote about WikiLeaks for the first time. It was, like, 2009, and this was before anybody even knew about WikiLeaks; it was before they did any of their big leaks. There was an article in the New York Times, and it said basically the US Army had declared this obscured group that nobody’s ever heard of called WikiLeaks an enemy of the state. And so, I kind of thought to myself, “Well any group that’s being declared an enemy of the state by the US government is probably one that deserves more attention and probably even more support.”

So, I went and researched them and found they were doing all these great transparency projects exposing corrupt factions, corporate and political. And I interviewed Julian Assange and I wrote about them and I said, you know, “The one thing they’re really missing – they’re sitting on all these big leaks, they are missing financial support.” So, I encouraged all my readers to go support them and send money to them, and you can do it by PayPal or bank wire. And in response to that, I had a huge number of people in my comments section and at events that I would attend and my email – and not, like, crazy, paranoid people, just, like, regular ordinary people say along the lines of, “Look, I totally get what you’re saying about WikiLeaks. They seem great; I would love to support them. The problem is that I’m really worried that if I send money to them electronically, that I’m going to end up on a government list somewhere. And if they get characterized as a terrorist organization, maybe one day I’ll be accused of aiding and abetting terrorists or providing material support to terrorism.” And, it was remarkable to me that these people who understood that they were being monitored in everything they were doing, including their political donations, had pretty much unilaterally, voluntarily relinquished a core first amendment right, which is the right to support groups that you agree with with donations or other work because they were petrified that they would be monitored and put on a government list somewhere and ultimately be punished for it in some way.

And that, to me, really reflected how crucial privacy is to free expression. And there are all these really fascinating psychological studies where if you sit somebody down in a room and you put a tape recorder on a table, or even if you do something subconscious that makes them feel subconsciously monitored, like put a picture of an eyeball on the wall facing them, researchers have found that if you ask them political questions like, “Do you support the legalization of drugs? Do you support the lowering of the age of consent?” People are so much freer in how they answer those questions if they don’t have any indicia of being monitored, and are much more constrained and kind of submissive and compliant when they feel like they’re being watched. A watched society does breed submission, and compliance and obedience because people then start behaving in a way and forming ideas and expressing ideas that are a byproduct of what society demands of them. Free expression can really thrive only when people are free to kind of explore and be creative and dissent without other judgmental eyes being cast upon them, and this relationship between free speech and privacy is really profound.

Nico Perrino: As a result of this wider threat to privacy, do you think that’s the biggest threat to free speech today? Do you think that the future looks brighter or darker for those rights?

Glenn Greenwald: I certainly think that a ubiquitous surveillance state is one of the biggest threats to free speech because the internet was supposed to be this realm of unfettered free expression and free political activism, which it was when anonymity was possible in the early days, and it really enabled people to express themselves and explore. And, I think a lot of that has been destroyed by the accurate perception that the internet, rather than being this innovation of liberalization, and democratization and emancipation from all these constraints, instead, it’s become probably the most unprecedented tool of social coercion, and monitoring and control, and has really lost it’s free speech promise because of the loss of privacy, because everything is just so monitored and it breeds this kind of submission. I do, though, think that other things have become a really big threat to free speech. It think fearmongering over terrorism has enabled lots of Western European countries and increasingly, the US, to enact laws and other policies that punish speech in the name of stopping terrorism –

Nico Perrino: Yeah, I see you’ve come to the defense of Anwar Al-Awlaki and ISIS sympathizers. I saw you get into it with a NPR person back in the day about the threat that speech that might be perceived to be sympathetic to terrorism was unconstitutional –

Glenn Greenwald: Yeah, I mean, in France, you have people being arrested for wearing T-shirts advocating boycott of Israel. In the UK, you’ve had Muslim teenagers who have been charged criminally and prosecuted for things like posting Facebook post expressing sympathy with Afghan insurgents who attack British troops. You have all kinds of terrorism prosecutions that are based overwhelmingly, if not exclusively, on people’s free speech, whether it’s uploading YouTube clips that supposedly glorify terrorism and the like. And then beyond that, I think that this ethos that has emerged within academic institutions and communities, which, to me is particularly threatening because if anywhere there should be protection of free expression, it should be in academia. This idea that in order to have a meaningful academic institution, you have to bar the expression of unpleasant ideas, I think also is a major threat.

Nico Perrino: Yeah. What do you make of what’s happened on campuses over the past couple of months?

Glenn Greenwald: Well, it’s funny because this is not really that much of a new controversy, right? I mean, the idea of PC wars goes back to at least the 1890s if not earlier. There were certainly fights, I remember, when I was in both college and the law school over that, but it’s really seemed to intensify in the past several years, and I’m not actually sure why. But there’s some ways that it manifests that people pay a lot of attention to, like when African-American, and gay groups, and Latino groups try to suppress ideas that they say are hurtful to minorities. But then, there’s also a really big trend as FIRE knows of trying to outlaw or criminalize activism on behalf of Palestinians or against Israeli occupation by equating it with anti-Semitism and then using the same framework and the same rationalize to criminalize or outlaw or ban that as well. And so, that, to me, illustrates the point we started off with which is, if you think that you like this kind of approach because in one instance, it’s suppressing ideas that you think should be suppressed, you should look into places that are probably not very far from you where you’ll see the same framework being used to suppress ideas that you probably think ought to be permitted. So, if it doesn’t offend you on some ethical or moral level, the idea of censorship, it should at least offend you on a tactical and pragmatic one.

Nico Perrino: Well, I know you’re a busy guy and I want to let you go here, shortly, but I always like to ask our guests one question at the end. Do you have a free speech hero? You know, someone you look up to in doing this work?

Glenn Greenwald: Well, I certainly have always admired the ACLU and I do think that the sit-in of the ACLU to represent neo-Nazis in Skokie, notwithstanding the fact that so many of their lawyers and donors were Jewish or otherwise offended by what they did. They lost a huge amount of support and donations from that. People quit their organization, and they’d get it anyway. And just the willingness of that organization to just so boldly represent Christian extremist groups, Fred Phelps, The Ku Klux Klan, exactly all of the organizations and groups and people who are most anathema to their membership and to their supporters, to me, has kind of set the framework for how free speech defenses should be practiced. Of course, if you go further back, you have people like John Adams and a lot of the early founders who actually talked about and took cases where they represented British troops accused of murdering colonists or other extremely unpopular causes on the principle that free speech only matters if you’re defending it in the cases where the views you hate most are under attack. So, that’s kind of the lineage that inspires me most.

Nico Perrino: Well, great, Glenn. Let our listeners know what you’re doing now and what they should check out after the show.

Glenn Greenwald: Yeah, I mean, I’m working at The Intercept. We’ve been covering a lot of different topics. We certainly cover free speech a great deal, we’ve done a lot of work on the suppression of a variety of ideas on college campuses including attacks on pro-Palestinian groups like we discussed. But, yeah, free speech is always going to be something that I cover a great deal in whatever venues I’m doing it. And while I’m here, I should say, and I have said before that I think FIRE has done fantastic work as well, precisely because the organization doesn’t discriminate or get more active in defense of views it likes, and less active in defense of views it dislikes. The free speech is a principle that FIRE’s defending, so I see that very much as part of that same heritage.

Nico Perrino: Well, we certainly appreciate the complement, Glenn, and thank you so much for calling in all the way over from Rio de Janeiro.

Glenn Greenwald: All right, great. Great talking to you.

Nico Perrino: That was Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept. Tune in two weeks from now for the second installment of our series on Defending My Enemy for an interview with David Baugh. David is a Black, Richmond, Virginia based criminal defense attorney who in the late 1990s defended the first amendment rights of an Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. It was a case that ultimately made its way up to the Supreme Court. David was a fantastic and entertaining interview, and trust me, you won’t want to miss this one. And you won’t miss it if you subscribe to this podcast. And while you’re at it, rate us as well. It’s the easiest thing you can do to help us get more ears on the show. You can also follow us on Twitter at You can also like us on Facebook at; that is, “So To Speak Podcast.” And you can email us at We are always happy to get listener feedback and entertain ideas for future shows. This podcast is hosted and produced by me, Nico Perrino, and recorded and edited by Aaron Reese and Chris Maltby. Thanks for listening.