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Thread: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

  1. #11
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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by danarhea View Post
    OK, so this is going to be about free speech. No problem, except that some people don't seem to get it that, with rights, come responsibilities. You must be familiar with the notion that free speech does not grant one to yell "fire" in a crowded theater. What the Supremes will be deciding will be the extent of limitations involved in free speech. Does it give Fred Phelps the right to invade the privacy of others, and disrupt the grieving of families during funerals with this.................?



    Here is the deal, folks. God gives us the right of freedom of speech, but that does not mean that we can trample the rights of others in the process. Phelps and his klan can rant all day about whether or not "God hates fags". However, when they disrupt the funerals of soldiers, they have crossed the line, and I hope that the family of the dead soldier these punks protested gets every dime from them.

    Finally, in the picture, Mrs. Phelps is right about one thing, although I am sure she didn't intend it. Yes, I thank God every day for dead soldiers, because without those who spilled their blood to defend us, there would be no United States of America. However, unlike Mrs. Phelps, I thank those soldiers, both straight and gay, who made the ultimate sacrifice, and gave their last measure, to keep America a free nation. We all die, eventually, and I believe that our rewards in the afterlife are commensurate with how we lived our lives. In that context, I truly believe that it sucks to be part of the Phelps klan, who (IMHO) will be enshrined in everlasting shame, once they leave this world.

    Article is here.

    EDIT: Check out the picture, and see how patriotic Mrs. Phelps is, with her desecration of the flag. She is a disgusting excuse for a human being, and a waste of good oxygen.
    My understanding is that they are across the street in protest. If that's the case, the too bad too sad. Can't shut idiots up sadly enough, and thus we should understand the rights of everyone must be honored. They are free to associate, protest, and speak. If they aren't on the private property or directly disturbing the event; then there's little to nothing we can do about it.

    With rights come responsibilities, including the responsibility to be tolerant of the rights of others so long as they are not infringing upon the rights of others in the process.
    Last edited by Ikari; 03-08-10 at 06:30 PM.
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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles Martel View Post
    So...if someone stands across the street from NAACP headquarters with a "Thank God for dead black people"...that's free speech?
    Yep.

    Certainly a grieving mother or father is just as outraged at a Thank God for dead soldiers sign.
    Yep. I think that's the point.

    Should a "Thank God your daughter has been murdered" sign be tolerated as any grieving father who has had say...his daughter raped and killed and being led out of court after a guilty verdict?
    Yep.

    I've been to Arlington for funerals, should any in my group have seen these folk...we would have fed the lil kiddie with the target sign to the Washington DC Zoo animals and taken the parents for a hunting expedition with Dick Cheney.
    So you would react to speech you don't like with violence?

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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by Panache View Post
    I disagree. If they are standing across the street with their picket signs, they are well within their rights. If they are barging in on a privately owned cemetery plot, then they are trespassing, which isn't a free speech issue.
    Yes, they have the right to protest. But do they have a right to disrupt a person's grieving with their protest? The damage would be of a personal injury type. Personal injuries generally involve money being given as compensation for injuries received. It's a civil matter, not a criminal one. If the court believes that such protesting can actually cause mental harm to someone, even if the protests is taking place on public property, then why shouldn't the person/people harmed receive compensation?
    Considering other things people have gotten compensation for, I can easily see how the bereaved should get their compensation. Technically, I pretty sure this wouldn't even make the protests illegal. It should actually just set a precedence for such lawsuits.

    I see it as someone suing a rag magazine for saying something that isn't true about a celebrity.
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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Yes, they have the right to protest. But do they have a right to disrupt a person's grieving with their protest?
    Yep.

    The damage would be of a personal injury type. Personal injuries generally involve money being given as compensation for injuries received. It's a civil matter, not a criminal one. If the court believes that such protesting can actually cause mental harm to someone, even if the protests is taking place on public property, then why shouldn't the person/people harmed receive compensation?
    For the same reason that the rest of the sue-happy whiners shouldn't.

    Considering other things people have gotten compensation for, I can easily see how the bereaved should get their compensation. Technically, I pretty sure this wouldn't even make the protests illegal. It should actually just set a precedence for such lawsuits.

    I see it as someone suing a rag magazine for saying something that isn't true about a celebrity.
    Funny. I see it as someone suing Starbucks when they spill hot coffee on themselves.

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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by Panache View Post
    Yep.



    For the same reason that the rest of the sue-happy whiners shouldn't.



    Funny. I see it as someone suing Starbucks when they spill hot coffee on themselves.
    It's not a violation of Free Speech. The government isn't saying that they can't protest or say what they want. The courts are saying that if what you are saying causes someone to be harmed mentally because they are unable to grieve properly with a hateful protest concerning them going on across the street, then you owe them money for their anguish. Each case should be considered separately as to whether it actually is causing mental harm, but it is legal, and not a violation of anyone's rights.
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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by roguenuke View Post
    Yes, they have the right to protest. But do they have a right to disrupt a person's grieving with their protest? The damage would be of a personal injury type. Personal injuries generally involve money being given as compensation for injuries received. It's a civil matter, not a criminal one. If the court believes that such protesting can actually cause mental harm to someone, even if the protests is taking place on public property, then why shouldn't the person/people harmed receive compensation?
    Considering other things people have gotten compensation for, I can easily see how the bereaved should get their compensation. Technically, I pretty sure this wouldn't even make the protests illegal. It should actually just set a precedence for such lawsuits.

    I see it as someone suing a rag magazine for saying something that isn't true about a celebrity.
    That's exactly what this case is about - it's a tort action seeking damages for intentional infliction of emotional distress. That doesn't mean that it doesn't implicate the first amendment though.
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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Doesn't the US have an offence of "Breach of the Peace"? In the UK I'm pretty sure it might be invoked if these types tried to disturb and offend mourners at a funeral.

    "In the United Kingdom, constables (or citizens) are permitted to arrest a person to "prevent a further breach of the peace" which allows to the police or the public to arrest a person before a breach of the peace has occurred. This is permitted when it is reasonable to believe should the person remain, that they would continue with their course of conduct and that a Breach of the Peace would occur. Breach of the Peace is usually used to remove violent or potentially violent offenders from a scene rapidly; the only punishment that can be inflicted by a court for this offence is to bind over the offender to keep the peace." Wiki lift.
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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by Charles Martel View Post
    So...if someone stands across the street from NAACP headquarters with a "Thank God for dead black people"...that's free speech?

    Certainly a grieving mother or father is just as outraged at a Thank God for dead soldiers sign.

    Should a "Thank God your daughter has been murdered" sign be tolerated as any grieving father who has had say...his daughter raped and killed and being led out of court after a guilty verdict?

    I've been to Arlington for funerals, should any in my group have seen these folk...we would have fed the lil kiddie with the target sign to the Washington DC Zoo animals and taken the parents for a hunting expedition with Dick Cheney.
    Nope that's hate speech because they are a minority and are immune from protests.
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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by danarhea View Post
    OK, so this is going to be about free speech. No problem, except that some people don't seem to get it that, with rights, come responsibilities. You must be familiar with the notion that free speech does not grant one to yell "fire" in a crowded theater. What the Supremes will be deciding will be the extent of limitations involved in free speech. Does it give Fred Phelps the right to invade the privacy of others, and disrupt the grieving of families during funerals with this.................?



    Here is the deal, folks. God gives us the right of freedom of speech, but that does not mean that we can trample the rights of others in the process. Phelps and his klan can rant all day about whether or not "God hates fags". However, when they disrupt the funerals of soldiers, they have crossed the line, and I hope that the family of the dead soldier these punks protested gets every dime from them.

    Finally, in the picture, Mrs. Phelps is right about one thing, although I am sure she didn't intend it. Yes, I thank God every day for dead soldiers, because without those who spilled their blood to defend us, there would be no United States of America. However, unlike Mrs. Phelps, I thank those soldiers, both straight and gay, who made the ultimate sacrifice, and gave their last measure, to keep America a free nation. We all die, eventually, and I believe that our rewards in the afterlife are commensurate with how we lived our lives. In that context, I truly believe that it sucks to be part of the Phelps klan, who (IMHO) will be enshrined in everlasting shame, once they leave this world.

    Article is here.

    EDIT: Check out the picture, and see how patriotic Mrs. Phelps is, with her desecration of the flag. She is a disgusting excuse for a human being, and a waste of good oxygen.
    I'm really glad you've posted this, as I've been following this case and the Westboro folks for a while.

    I totally agree with your analogy to the legal limits on free speech 'yelling fire'--but I've had a few people get in my face over that, saying it's not comparable at all. The speech is political in nature and not an attempt to incite a riot or mad rush for the exit.

    IMO -- a funeral is a special circumstance. People are vulnerable and the viscous and ugly sings the Westboro people bring go outside the boundaries of free speech. In this specific circumstance, their speech becomes an overt and deliberate assault on the families, an attempt to provoke emotions and cause injury those in attendance.

    The $5mil was punitive and appropriate.

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    Re: Court to rule in military funeral protest case

    Quote Originally Posted by roguenuke View Post
    It's not a violation of Free Speech. The government isn't saying that they can't protest or say what they want. The courts are saying that if what you are saying causes someone to be harmed mentally because they are unable to grieve properly with a hateful protest concerning them going on across the street, then you owe them money for their anguish. Each case should be considered separately as to whether it actually is causing mental harm, but it is legal, and not a violation of anyone's rights.
    I agree--scotus should tread lightly.

    The Phelps have gone way off range and are no longer under any umbrella of protection.

    They go to such an extreme--it's unreasonable and inappropriate.

    How they don't get arrested for disturbing the peace every time is amazing. I know the family is a bunch a lawyers, but they're not the most competent attorneys. I guess cities are intimidated.

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