Marine Father Sues Church Protesters

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by Annie, Oct 26, 2007.

  1. BarnGoddess

    BarnGoddess Former Member

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    I understand free speech. This group practices it on their website. But just as we have laws now against hate speech, as well as the proverbial shouting "fire" in a crowded theater. Do we allow this verbal abuse to encroach our personal space? I think they should stick to their web site where if anyone wants to go look is free to do so. Showing up at a funeral and subjecting mourning families to this garbage is an encroachment to their civil rights, IMO.

    I won't post their web address, you can get that by googling Rev. Phelps, but I notice they are due to picket a funeral in Norton, Ks. and even plan to picket the funeral of the seven students who died in the Carolina fire. Whatever for???? Maybe with the verdict today, they won't show up at either one. We can only hope.
     
  2. MagicRose99

    MagicRose99 Watch out for my thorns!

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    I'm sure these slimeballs will show up... they're worthless and live for this, because they having nothing else in their lives.

    I just hope more families sue and win... more laws passed that prohibit this behavior. Protesting gays has NOTHING to do with these heroes... and their families should not be subjected to this cr*p in their time of pain and sorrow.
     
  3. luvbeaches

    luvbeaches New Member

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    We live in Kansas, so we see this group all the time. It's so sad what they have done to their children...which, IMO, is abuse. Fred Phelps and the other adults in this group are sickos.
     
  4. Annie

    Annie New Member

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    I am so glad the dad won. Sure they have a right to free speech, but a family has a right to bury a loved one without harrassment from a bunch of kooks. They can demonstrate somewhere else.
     
  5. southcitymom

    southcitymom New Member

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    I think the Courts will find these people protected under free speech. I am interested to see how it will play out.
     
  6. BarnGoddess

    BarnGoddess Former Member

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    I get your drift, southcitymom. I am totally against censorship in any form myself. That is for the written and publically performed word.** I know we have laws against hate speech now. Where do we draw the line? What do you think constitutes hate speech? Do you think laws against it violate the constitution? I'm not arguing with you, but asking your opinion. Where do you draw a line?

    **That means literature and performance art. You can opt out of opening the cover of a book, or not paying to see "Hair" performed in the nude. For that matter, when a group of us women had season tickets to the opera in Miami, we chose to go to the performance of "Mephistopheles" by Faust. It was partly in the nude. You should have heard the little old ladies behind us fussing about how "disgusting" it was. All the while they were fighting over the binoculars, trying to get a really good look.

    How many times have you had to endure listening to a co-worker that could use the "F" word 20 times in one sentence, only to be outdone by another worker could use it 21 times? If you complain to your boss that it's offensive, are you violating someone's freedom of speech? Am I to endure the offensive language in order to preserve their freedom? Do I have a right to complain and have it stop? Do I have a legal leg to stand on? Where does their free speech end and my rights to a decent workspace begin?

    I just thought I'd ask how far you'd go to preserve freedom of speech and where you'd draw the line on possible abuse of that freedom. Why is a white person calling a black person the "N" word considered hate speech and against the law and yet blacks can call each other the "N" word and it's considered OK?
     
  7. CaliKid

    CaliKid Former Member

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    On the news tonight they were saying that the civil judgment will bankrupt the church, and they haven't even decided on punitive damages yet.
     
  8. Details

    Details Former Member

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    Freedom of speech doesn't mean freedom to be heard. They can say whatever they want, put on a play, with god hates fags as the key theme. But when they try to force others to hear them by using a funeral as their platform - that's not protected free speech. You can say what you want - but not anywhere you want. As with the classic "Fire" in a theater, or "Bomb" in an airport.
     
  9. SeriouslySearching

    SeriouslySearching Well-Known Member

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    11 million dollars sounds like a good figure to me!!!

    BALTIMORE — The father of a fallen Marine was awarded nearly $11 million Wednesday in damages by a jury that found leaders of a fundamentalist church had invaded the family's privacy and inflicted emotional distress when they picketed the Marine's funeral.
    The jury first awarded $2.9 million in compensatory damages. It returned later in the afternoon with its decision to award $6 million in punitive damages for invasion of privacy and $2 million for causing emotional distress to the Marine's father, Albert Snyder of York, Pa.
    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,307058,00.html
     
  10. Peter Hamilton

    Peter Hamilton New Member

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    Yes! $11,000,000 judgement! I hope this award does indeed bankrupt this "church"--It is an outrage for anyone to picket at a funeral--how pathetic can you get??They ought to throw these "church" members in jail
     
  11. Rino

    Rino Former Member

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    Bankrupt them!! :D I love a happy ending.

    I hate to see the youngsters holding those vile signs, it is a form of child abuse to teach hatred.
     
  12. AfterMidnight

    AfterMidnight Former Member

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    I gather it's all right to have, and express, hatred but not to teach it?
     
  13. GlitchWizard

    GlitchWizard Reprobate

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    I think it's because the black people are taking the word back and using it so it no longer stings. I have no problem with this double standard. I see it with other groups as well - such as a group of folks who happen to be in wheelchairs can call each other a "wheelie" but a person who can walk around freely would be thought of as extremely insensitive to use the same term. Makes perfect sense to me.

    However, as horrific as it is to me that anyone can ruin a funeral for a family - it's beyond disgraceful that anyone would infringe upon something so sacred - but I wouldn't have thought it illegal. You're legalizing morality now. Granted, you're going to HAVE to, eventually, if people don't stop letting their kids grow up to be RUDE as heck and insensitive.

    edited to add: I didn't realize using the N word for a white person was illegal, and only saw that you said that after I posted. Is it really?
     
  14. Amraann

    Amraann Former Member

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    This was how the major outlets of the KKK were taken down.

    They were sued and went bankrupt:)

    This is a wonderful outcome!!!!!
     
  15. GlitchWizard

    GlitchWizard Reprobate

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    The members of Westboro Baptist Church have explained their decision to use the word fag, a largely pejorative term for homosexual men, in their FAQ:
    The word "fag" is a contraction of the word "******" (or, "fagot"). When traced through its etymological history, the word "******" simply means "a bundle of sticks used as fuel." See dictionary.com and thesaurus.com (where such words as "fuel" and "brimstone" are used as synonyms). "Scholars" can't decide when such a word began to be used in reference to homosexuals, so we'll give the answer here: "I have overthrown some of you, as God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah, and ye were as a firebrand plucked out of the burning: yet have ye not returned unto me, saith the Lord." Amos 4:11. The word translated "firebrand" is the Hebrew word "uwd," which comes from a Hebrew verb meaning "to rake together" (or, "to gather together"). In short, the Hebrew word "uwd" is talking about burning sticks of wood that are gathered together. That is what the English word "******" means. Amos 4:11 could just as easily be translated "...ye were as a ****** plucked out of the burning..."[7]

    (From Wikapedia)
    Personally, I think it's a bunch of Hooey. They used the word because they wanted to hurt people.
     
  16. MREG2

    MREG2 Former Member

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    That and to draw more attention to themselves and their "plight". Seeing the word "fag" draws more gasps and dropped mouths than seeing the word "gay". All they want is attention.

    Personally I hope they are made to pay every single cent to this father. I hope the little smirks on their face gets wiped off. Who are they to judge? Only God can do that... Hiprocrites.

    Awhile back they were in my home town to protest a funeral. I DJ in Louisville told them that he would give them air time if they did not show up at the funeral. They agreed. That DJ became a hero around here. That family was able to grieve without these losers there.
     
  17. Rino

    Rino Former Member

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    I have no control over how people feel. Phelps and his crew are vile and when I see them, as offensive as they are it is they who are the gargage not those they protest against.


    But to teach it is abusive, imo. Kids are not born with hate or predjudices they are taught them.
     
  18. bnhall

    bnhall Former Member

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    I believe in free speech. But I think as long as they have an open forum (i.e. the internet), then they can be stopped from protesting funerals. If they want to get a permit and protest in the middle of the street, then so be it. But a funeral is a different kind of thing. It's obvious that they want to hurt the people who are mourning.
     
  19. GlitchWizard

    GlitchWizard Reprobate

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    If they keep this kind of thing up, pretty soon there will be portable barricades that shield the mourners from viewing anything else.

    It's a free country, which means you apparently are free to be a jerkwad. Too bad we aren't then free to let the air out of their tires while they are busy being jerkwads!
     
  20. anneoakley63

    anneoakley63 Member

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    Some municipalities have passed ordinances requiring this group of idiots to get a permit to protest. And even then, they aren't allowed within 500 - 1000 ft of the church/cemetary. Still, the Freedom Riders, Patriot Guard Riders and Rolling Thunder are usually there to stand between them and the family...to shield the family from what they are doing and to honor the soldiers who have fallen.

    Restrictions on speech include the following:
    • Defamation (slander and libel)
    • Hate speech that is defamatory or causes incitement to violence
    • Fighting words doctrine:(U.S. 1942) "insulting or 'fighting words', those that by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace"
    • Sedition: speech or organization (vs Freedom of Assembly) that is deemed as tending toward insurrection against the established order. Sedition often includes subversion of a constitution and incitement of discontent (or resistance) to lawful authority. Sedition may include any commotion, though not aimed at direct and open violence against the laws.
    Any of these 4 could actually HURT the appeal that I'm sure this group will file. The majority of these people are attorneys and they make their money by suing groups/people who "violate their right to freedom of speech". :furious:

    Fred Phelps is so against the soldiers that it makes me wonder how he'd react if one of his children/grandchildren decided to join the military!
     

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