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12/10/2010

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Jimbino

You saÿ:

"But the First Amendment does not confer the right to speak anywhere at any time. To suppose that the right to spout hate in the media implies a right to inflict emotional distress on grieving mourners at a funeral is to endorse a heartless and foolish privileging of speech over privacy and dignity. We can honor our profound national commitment to robust debate without permitting any such assaults on the emotionally vulnerable."

I come down on the side of free speech. It seems to me you have an absolute right to ANY speech of pure opinion ("He's going to hell.") whether public or private. Otherwise, I couldn't walk up to Obama and declare, "You are an idiot and a traitor to Amerika."

Furthermore, "infliction of emotional distress" has to be intentional and not incidental to normal speech. I'm distressed when folks say, "Have a nice day" and especially when they recite the "Pledge of Allegiance" in my presence.

Moreover, if the funeral were "private," there would be no problem, since the protesters need not be admitted to any private function.

It is clear to me that, at a public cemetery, especially one maintained by taxpayer dollars, anyone may say anything he wants anywhere he wants, as long as he observes rules applicable to anyone reading a laundry list out loud.

Folks who use lands be paid for by the public, whether national parks or forests, or public cemeteries, cannot insist on the right to perform their own religious ceremonies without subjecting themselves to criticism and picketing. For that reason, among others, we need to privatize all our public parks, forests, cemeteries and schools. That would avoid the problem.

Janine

I as a Christian am justed horrified
that a child murdered by some crazy gunman.But to picket a nine year olds funeral its just wrong wrong wrong!
I am happy that there is legislation to keep you crazy's at the Westboro Baptist Church away from the parents of this child. You really should be ashamed of yourselves.It sure seams that your god is writing his own rules.

Steve Shiffrin

Thank you for your comment Janine. Im on your side. And Arizona is in
the process of passing a law forbidding demonstrations within 300 feet
of a funeral. It could be better crafted, but it is not far enough away
in my view.

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