D.C. Restricts the Mask-Wearing Protesters - NBC4 Washington

D.C. Restricts the Mask-Wearing Protesters

Nothing to hide for protesters



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    LONDON - NOVEMBER 28: PETA (People For The Ethical Treatment Of Animals) protestors dressed up in chicken outfits wait outside the Central Hall to meet Al Gore on November 28, 2007 in London. PETA promote vegetarianism as a must for people who care about the environment. (Photo by Cate Gillon/Getty Images)

    Wearing a mask while protesting outside a home could now get you arrested in D.C.

    The D.C. Council has unanimously passed a bill that requires such protesters to inform police about their demonstrations.

    The strongly worded bill is intended to target an animal rights group whose members have been known to wear masks and show up unannounced outside homes.

    Residents have been complaining that they felt "terrorized" by the group in question, Defending Animal Rights Today and Tomorrow (DARTT). But critics of the bill say it's too broad and infringes upon the First Amendment. The American Civil Liberties Union has come out against the measure.

    D.C. Councilmember Mary Cheh, who sponsored the bill, says the group has made people "feel like prisoners in their own homes."

    DARTT did not respond to requests for comment on the bill.