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Obscene, Disgusting, Offensive...and Constitutional
Neoavatara ^ | October 11, 2010 | Neoavatara

Posted on 10/11/2010 6:45:54 PM PDT by Neoavatara

The Supreme Court this week heard oral arguments in the case of Snyder v. Phelps. Albert Snyder, the father of Lance Cpl. Matthew A. Snyder, who died in 2006 in Iraq, sued the Westboro Baptist Church, a fundamentalist Christian church that contends that God kills soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan as punishment for America'stolerance of homosexuality and for the presence of gays in the U.S. military.

Westboro Baptist Church pastor and founder Fred Phelps and members of his congregation picketed Matthew's funeral, holding signs expressing anti-gay, anti-American, and anti-Catholic slogans, including "God hates you" and "You're going to hell."

Mr. Snyder sued the Church and Pastor Phelps immediately after the funeral. On October 31, 2007 ajury handed down a $10.9 million verdict against the defendants. However, the Fourth Circuit issued an opinion reversing the judgment of the district court and vacating the jury award. The appellate court found the Phelps' speech (both website and picketing) protected by the First Amendment.

(Excerpt) Read more at neoavatara.com ...


TOPICS: Government; History; Military/Veterans; Politics
KEYWORDS: consitution; supremecourt; teaparty; teapartyexpress

1 posted on 10/11/2010 6:45:57 PM PDT by Neoavatara
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To: Neoavatara

The protests are disgusting and offensive, but they have to be allowed. I don’t like it, but to infringe on their First Amendment right to protest is to spit on the very freedoms that these young men died for.

Not popular, I know, but right and popular aren’t always the same.


2 posted on 10/11/2010 6:47:40 PM PDT by jhigh
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To: Neoavatara

I do agree that the funeral protests should not be made illegal.

But I would like to see states and communities pass a law that makes the the maximum punishment for kicking those peoples’ asses is a $10 fine.


3 posted on 10/11/2010 6:48:21 PM PDT by earlJam
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To: Neoavatara

phelps and his crew are not people they are demons.


4 posted on 10/11/2010 6:48:42 PM PDT by svcw (Just in case you ever wondered: As of May 2010, it costs ~ $0.0167 US Dollars to mint a penny.)
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To: svcw
phelps and his crew are not people they are demons.

Actually Phelps and his crew are democrats.

Oh, sorry, same thing.

5 posted on 10/11/2010 6:51:38 PM PDT by american_ranger
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To: Neoavatara

6 posted on 10/11/2010 6:52:06 PM PDT by bigheadfred ("We built a tower of stone. With our flesh and bone. To see him fly ." (RIP RJD))
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To: jhigh

I agree..I would like to Kick their teeth in for their disgusting protests..but I am hesitant abuot restricting Free Speech...


7 posted on 10/11/2010 6:54:50 PM PDT by jakerobins
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To: Neoavatara

Of course if they protested at Muhammad Atta’s funeral it would not be protected free speech; it would probably be prosecuted as a hate crime.


8 posted on 10/11/2010 6:56:38 PM PDT by The Good Doctor (Democracy is the only system where you can vote for a tax that you can avoid the obligation to pay.)
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To: earlJam

I like it - I got a couple of 20’s in my wallet...let’s go find us some protesters and express our displeasure with their choice of venue! :-)


9 posted on 10/11/2010 6:59:04 PM PDT by ThunderSleeps (obama out now! I'll keep my money, my guns, and my freedom - you can keep the change.)
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To: jhigh
The protests are disgusting and offensive, but they have to be allowed. I don’t like it, but to infringe on their First Amendment right to protest is to spit on the very freedoms that these young men died for. Not popular, I know, but right and popular aren’t always the same.

Funerals aren't free and you don't pay rent. You pay to be there, for the service, and for the plot. So it's a privacy issue linked to private property rights. It's also an issue involving disturbing the peace, and an obvious and serious form of harrassment with intent to maximize the fear, anxiety and offense against a known vulnerable group.

It's the old yelling fire in a crowded theater routine. Even better, just shift the context to a hospital instead of a cemetary, and even imagine the dearly beloved in a coma and the victims being the same family members. The hosptial would either throw the abusers out on their asses or call the cops, who would immediately arrest them.

The cemetary should be sued for allowing the disruption, and the disruptors should be sued and charged for assault. The law is readily available - the lack of support from prosecutors and judges is purely a political decision.

10 posted on 10/11/2010 7:00:07 PM PDT by Talisker (When you find a turtle on top of a fence post, you can be damn sure it didn't get there on its own.)
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To: Neoavatara

Phelps is not practicing a Freedom of Speech he and his cohorts are practicing a blame game to inflict mental anguish on a family. The family was supportive of their child going into war as a soldier, sailor, airman. because the individaul was killed, the soldier becomes a public enemy that can be humilitated and scorned for their service to a country’s punishment by God. God does not like war, god also grieves with the families whom are grieving..

phelps is making a political statement at a funeral. He is not exercising any type of Freedom Of Speech - but to exercise a freedom to inflect harm and to humilitate a family. freedom od Speech does not warrant a person to speak ill of someone whom has given freely of oneself in service of a country. A funeral is a private affair.

this could fall under hate speech and be punished in the court at an exorbanant amount. This church should be disbanded.


11 posted on 10/11/2010 7:00:31 PM PDT by hondact200 ( Lincoln Freed the Enslaved. Obama Enslaves the Free. Obama is Americas Greatest Threat)
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To: jakerobins

I too agree that we need to protect free speech that being said I would really protect the free speech of any organization who wishes to picket/protest these nasty people. I wonder how they would like it if we protest the membership at home, work, grocery store, church, hair salon, gay bath house?


12 posted on 10/11/2010 7:00:44 PM PDT by joesjane ((The strength of the pack is the wolf - Rudyard Kipling))
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To: joesjane

Hmmmm now there’s a thought.......Good luck if you want to put it together.....


13 posted on 10/11/2010 7:07:17 PM PDT by jakerobins
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To: jhigh

Okay....then what about the rule the Supremes (I think) made about protestors around Abortion clinics???>??


14 posted on 10/11/2010 7:10:32 PM PDT by goodnesswins (f you don't support Obama, and the deconstruction of America: YOU are a RACIST.)
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To: jhigh

Exactly. I hate it, but there it is. The First Amendment has to stay intact. Once we start down the road “except in this case”, it’s a slippery slope.

But this is also why I think the entire concept of “hate speech” is utterly unconstitutional, as is the concept of “hate crime”.


15 posted on 10/11/2010 7:11:09 PM PDT by Ronin (If he were not so gruesomely incompetent and dangerous, Obama would just be silly.)
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To: Neoavatara

How is this behavior any different from yelling “fire” in a crowded theatre (or any other crowded venue) when there is no fire?


16 posted on 10/11/2010 7:13:09 PM PDT by SoldierDad (Proud Papa of two new Army Brats! Congrats to my Soldier son and his wife.)
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To: jhigh

I don’t think they have to “be allowed” anywhere near a funeral.


17 posted on 10/11/2010 7:15:17 PM PDT by A_perfect_lady (Instead of building a grand mosque at Ground Zero, let's build a Ground Zero at their Grand Mosque.)
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To: jhigh

The problem I have is that they are preaching to the wrong people. If what they say is true, that it is God’s judgment against America for her sin, then why are they not in front of gay clubs or in San Francisco? Why are they saying garbage about someone who in God’s eyes has practiced no greater love???? I think you should be able to talk about what you want but WHERE and HOW are to be governed.

The church has rules about what we do in church, who talks, who rules, who comes in, who gets kicked out, who dies because they lied, who speaks in tongues, etc, etc, etc. So these people have to abide by the rules. Let’s make some!


18 posted on 10/11/2010 7:15:21 PM PDT by huldah1776
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To: jhigh

There is no reason to ban these protests....the solution is “counter protesters” in such numbers where the disruption is not noticed by the family. Phelps and Co. will not show their faces into a large crowd of counter protesters.


19 posted on 10/11/2010 7:15:43 PM PDT by Ouderkirk (Democrats...the party of Slavery, Segregation, Sodomy, and Sedition)
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To: Neoavatara
Completely Mind Boggling

Forty years ago the Supreme Court finds a right of privacy in the Constitution which leads to a right of abortion - even though neither is mentioned.

Now an absolute right privacy guarantees the right of a parent to murder a child...

yet no right of privacy exists for a parent to bury a child.

The right of a brain dead group of jackasses to exercise their “first amendment right” must be guaranteed at all costs...

yet there is no right for parents to peacefully bury a son that has died for our country.

Argue any Constitutional grounds you want - it will still be wrong no matter what the argument offered.

20 posted on 10/11/2010 7:16:39 PM PDT by I cannot think of a name
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To: hondact200

Actually, it’s a form of stalking.


21 posted on 10/11/2010 7:17:02 PM PDT by A_perfect_lady (Instead of building a grand mosque at Ground Zero, let's build a Ground Zero at their Grand Mosque.)
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To: jakerobins

That is my dream job, I would love to walk away from my day job and organize against a lot of groups. Just counting the days until all the credit cards and debt are gone so I can dump the day job then it will be on! I have no idea where these clowns live but if there is ever a funeral in my AO you can count on me following them from the moment the hit the state line! I would think that maybe some freepers live near them? Actually if someone organizes in their hometown I would be willing to make a few trips, kinda a vacation in fact.


22 posted on 10/11/2010 7:17:52 PM PDT by joesjane ((The strength of the pack is the wolf - Rudyard Kipling))
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To: joesjane

Just went to their website (gross) they are located at 3701 W. 12th Street in Topeka, KS. Regular service time is 12:00 p.m. (Central time).


23 posted on 10/11/2010 7:23:24 PM PDT by joesjane ((The strength of the pack is the wolf - Rudyard Kipling))
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To: Neoavatara

“Westboro Baptist Church, a fundamentalist Christian church”

WRONG.


24 posted on 10/11/2010 7:31:14 PM PDT by ViLaLuz (2 Chronicles 7:14)
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To: Neoavatara

“Time and place” speech regulations are fully Constitutional. They should be allowed to say whatever they want ... elsewhere. Leave the family in peace.

SnakeDoc


25 posted on 10/11/2010 7:31:52 PM PDT by SnakeDoctor ("When you have them by the balls, their hearts and minds will follow." -- Teddy Roosevelt)
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To: The Good Doctor
That's what I don't understand, why aren't they being prosecuted for hate speech?

If I said half the things they are carrying around written on signs some gay person would be screaming hate speech and demanding I be arrested.

where are the 'gay rights' people, and why aren't they going after these sons and daughters of Cain?

26 posted on 10/11/2010 7:32:08 PM PDT by Shadowstrike (Be polite, Be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.)
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To: jhigh; earlJam
Yes, have to agree that it is their right. Based on that, let's hope they level the playing field, and either rule that they can protest, but only in designated areas (”pens”); or protesters at political events/conventions can not be relegated to “official protest areas”.

Goose, geese, ganders.

27 posted on 10/11/2010 7:34:49 PM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Made in America, by proud American citizens, in 1946.)
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To: Neoavatara

I pastor a very conservative SBC and detest the sin of homosexuality. I also detest the actions of Westboro Baptist Church. There actions of protest at the funerals of soldiers cannot be Scripturally justified by any means. God’s favor is not upon them!


28 posted on 10/11/2010 7:35:01 PM PDT by evangmlw
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To: svcw

Amen!


29 posted on 10/11/2010 7:36:14 PM PDT by Shadowstrike (Be polite, Be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.)
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To: bigheadfred
Now that's a t-shirt I'd actually buy.
30 posted on 10/11/2010 7:37:09 PM PDT by Shadowstrike (Be polite, Be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.)
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To: Neoavatara

Too many grownups just can’t handle religion just like too many folks just can’t handle alcohol.


31 posted on 10/11/2010 7:46:20 PM PDT by Walts Ice Pick
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To: Neoavatara

I keep thinking that some time, there will be a parent of a dead soldier, that has a terminal illness, that is willing to step up to the plate.


32 posted on 10/11/2010 7:53:27 PM PDT by Husker24
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To: jhigh
The protests are disgusting and offensive, but they have to be allowed. I don’t like it, but to infringe on their First Amendment right to protest...

I disagree, on the grounds that the funerals are private, not public events. You could argue that these cretins could protest on the sides of the public roads over which the procession rides is a First Amendment issue, but the funeral itself, in the cemetary, is a private affair. These people are intruding on an intimate private event with the intention of upsetting the mourners, as well as making a scene. There is no intention to persuade, which is why it isn't a matter of free speech.

Would it be a free speech issue if these people wanted to crash a private wedding party? Funerals should be accorded the same respect.

Incidentally, would these funeral protesters be allowed at Arlington National on the same free speech issues? After all, it is a public cemetery, unlike the one at the heart of the Snyder/Phelps case.

33 posted on 10/11/2010 9:15:48 PM PDT by Pearls Before Swine (/s, in case you need to ask)
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To: jhigh

Yes, they can protest.

And as in what happened in my small town a couple of years ago...half of the town and every flag waving motorcyle group within 200 hundred miles showed up to protect the deceased and his family.

There was no violence and it sure put a damper on the “protest”.

That maybe the best way to combat these types of things. Strong opposition.

(I still see and hear those bikers roaring down the highway...flags waving.)


34 posted on 10/11/2010 9:25:31 PM PDT by berdie (Hey, Bill Mahr...That's Mrs. Cracker to you.)
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