On the stand, Choi said the First Amendment provides for the right of people to petition the government for a redress of grievances, which also, he said, is a moral responsibility of patriotic Americans. Choi responded under questioning by Feldman that he believed his actions were a form of speech, and that the government did not have a right to censor them by arresting him.
At times, Choi raised his voice and spoke in such a tone that he almost seemed close to shouting, especially when asked about his arrest. Under cross-examination by Assistant U.S. Attorney Angela George, he compared the various protests against “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” to the 1960 sit-in by students in Greensboro, N.C., at a Woolworth’s department store and said he was “insulted” by his prosecution on federal charges.
Tempers flared when Feldman and George sparred over George’s refusal to call Choi and Pietrangelo by their ranks, referring to them as “Mister” because “they are not in the military anymore.” Magistrate Judge John Facciola resolved the issue by ordering George to address them by their highest achieved ranks.
AP’s coverage is here.