View Poll Results: Is protesting at funerals 'Free Speech'?

Voters
55. You may not vote on this poll
  • No, this was never the intent of the founding fathers!

    2 3.64%
  • It's harassment and should be illegal

    24 43.64%
  • It's open to interpretation

    4 7.27%
  • It's most certainly a form of protected free speech

    18 32.73%
  • Other, please explain

    7 12.73%
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Thread: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

  1. #111
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    The question I have is whether or not limiting the location and time for certain types of injury-inducing speech is the same thing as prohibiting free speech.
    I guess the Supreme Court will let us know. ^.^

  2. #112
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    The question I have is whether or not limiting the location and time for certain types of injury-inducing speech is the same thing as prohibiting free speech.

    The people are still very free to promote their views, publicly in fact, they would just need to do so in ways that are not purposefully chosen to inflict as much damage as possible.

    If the Westboro ****heads weren't protesting outside of funerals and coal mining accidents, they'd be completely irrelevant. They do it for attention, and nothing more. They purposefully do it at these times because they know that their willful acts to emotionally harm others will make it on the news.

    The most important thing is that they aren't prevented from sharing their despicable views when they are prevented from inflicting these purposeful wounds upon the bereaved. They are still free to share them. What they want, more than anything, is free advertising for their views via the news networks.

    They know they won't get it if they act like semi-decent human beings.
    I was gonna add to my post that protesting in this manner "certainly is an attention getter," but didn't think it appropriate...mainly because I don't think protesting at funerals is appropriate. Of course, people/organizations have a Constitutional right to do so as long as the adhere to local ordinance laws. Still, I think it's morally wrong to do so.

    Protest before or after the funeral services if you must, but let the grieving family bury their dead in peace. (And yes, Catz, I read the article...still think it's wrong either way, but the protesters do have that right.)

  3. #113
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Objective Voice View Post
    Protest before or after the funeral services if you must, but let the grieving family bury their dead in peace. (And yes, Catz, I read the article...still think it's wrong either way.)
    Is it morally wrong? Probably.

    Is it illegal? Probably not.

    There are a lot of things that people do that I find reprehensible that are still perfectly legal.

  4. #114
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goobieman View Post
    Well, no, because 'free speech' doesn't include speech that causes harm.
    As such, prohibitions against same do not limit free speech.
    Then the discussion here would really come down to whether or not these protests do cause harm to the bereaved and whether or not it can be shown that they do.

    Or, probably more specifically, if "Thank God for Dead Soldiers" or "Your sons are in Hell" can be construed as a "personally abusive epithet", especially at a funeral.
    Last edited by Tucker Case; 04-14-10 at 03:33 PM.
    Tucker Case - Tard magnet.

  5. #115
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Catz Part Deux View Post
    Is it morally wrong? Probably.

    Is it illegal? Probably not.

    There are a lot of things that people do that I find reprehensible that are still perfectly legal.
    Yeah, but that's when people need to remind themselves that, "Just because I can do something doesn't necessarily mean that I should."

    Still, I hear ya'...

  6. #116
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Objective Voice View Post
    Yeah, but that's when people need to remind themselves that, "Just because I can do something doesn't necessarily mean that I should."

    Still, I hear ya'...
    Okay? That's not the issue. The issue is whether we want government involved. And, my answer is "Hell no." Local government already has more than enough ability to control noise and disruption.

  7. #117
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Objective Voice View Post
    I was gonna add to my post that protesting in this manner "certainly is an attention getter," but didn't think it appropriate...mainly because I don't think protesting at funerals is appropriate. Of course, people/organizations have a Constitutional right to do so as long as the adhere to local ordinance laws. Still, I think it's morally wrong to do so.

    Protest before or after the funeral services if you must, but let the grieving family bury their dead in peace. (And yes, Catz, I read the article...still think it's wrong either way, but the protesters do have that right.)
    I agree that protesting at a funeral is absolutely despicable, regardless of what is said, but I think this issue also delves entirely into what is actually on the protest signs and what is being said at/outside the funerals.

    If it the purposefully malicious aspects of the signs were removed, i.e. your sons are in hell, Thank God for Dead soldiers, then the issue would merely be protesting at the funeral, and I say that, despicable as it is to do so, it should be protected.

    But in this case, the words chosen are designed with malicious intent in order to inflict emotional wounds upon the bereaved, IMO. As such, that particular speech at that particular time doesn't automatically warrant protection and requires a more in-depth analysis.
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  8. #118
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    Then the discussion here would really come down to whether or not these protests do cause harm to the bereaved and whether or not it can be shown that they do.
    I thought from your statement that this was assumed.

  9. #119
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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tucker Case View Post
    Then the discussion here would really come down to whether or not these protests do cause harm to the bereaved and whether or not it can be shown that they do.

    Or, probably more specifically, if "Thank God for Dead Soldiers" or "Your sons are in Hell" can be construed as a "personally abusive epithet", especially at a funeral.
    I think it most certainly can, and from the article, it has!

    The grieving father can't sleep and his health has been affected by the actions of the protesters. So, yes, I think they have done harm.

    From the article:

    Snyder's lawsuit accuses the Topeka, Kan., church of invading his privacy and intentionally inflicting emotional distress.

    "It's still very emotional," Snyder said in an interview at his attorney's office. "It's like I constantly relive this every day, and I just wonder sometimes, when this is all over, what I'm going to do with that void. Will the grieving process begin?"

    The fight has taken its toll on Snyder's health. The broad-chested 54-year-old has struggled with clinical depression and diabetes.
    Now, one could argue that it has been the stress from preparing and fighting this issue in court that has cause Mr. Snyder the most durress, but where did this all start? Would he have already gone through the grieving process had it not been for the protesters? An interesting question because everyone grieves differently and for some the process takes longer than for others. Still, who's to say whether or not Mr. Snyder wouldn't be well over grieving for his deceased son had the protesters backed off?

    Of course, I also see the other side here. If you say to protesters you can't speak your voice here or there, then when and where can they do it? What other restricts will be placed on "freedom of speech?"

    It's an interesting case indeed.

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    Re: Is protesting at funerals 'free speech'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Objective Voice View Post
    IThe grieving father can't sleep and his health has been affected by the actions of the protesters.
    His son died. It's questionable whether he is suffering more because of the protestors, or if these conditions were the inevitable effect of losing his son. I'd vote for the latter.

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