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Totenkopf
03-02-2011, 05:04 PM
USSC hands down 8-1 decision in favor of Westboro. Any thoughts?

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110302/ap_on_re_us/us_supreme_court_funeral_protests

Tysyacha
03-02-2011, 05:20 PM
*LOL* From the title of this thread, I thought you meant MICHAEL Phelps.

As for the funeral protests, they make me sick. Anybody else would be arrested, even a large crowd, if they staged a protest at anybody else's funeral. But, because the crowd in question belongs to a church, their protesting is okay. Wait--what? Non sequitur.

Astor
03-02-2011, 06:31 PM
I read Justice Alito's dissenting statement, and this stood out -

"In order to have a society in which public issues can beopenly and vigorously debated, it is not necessary to allow the brutalization of innocent victims like petitioner."

I realise how important the First Amendment is to American ideals of free speech and so on, but I think in this instance 'free speech' goes too far.

purifier
03-02-2011, 07:24 PM
I've been watching this "Westbro church" group for a long time, I've come to the conclusion that they are all possibly demonically possessed. :dev8: And before long, they will announce the coming of the false prophet, who is a member of there congregation. Which may bring about Apocalypse!



Let us pray for their poor souls: :halo2: "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."



:fist: Can I, Can I get a "AMEN" everbody!

Q
03-02-2011, 07:35 PM
This is the downside of freedom of speech, but it's still way better than the alternative.

JediMaster12
03-02-2011, 08:12 PM
Okay if you want my honest feeling right now, I am severely pissed and reaffirms the reasons why I have an aversion to religion.

You know I have no problem with the right to free speech but what them idjit fanatics are doing is barely toeing the line on what is speech and slander. I am disgusted with this church group thinking that they have the right to show up at a funeral, a military funeral, and start their "wrath of God" crapola. It's the equivalent of me going up and spitting on their family's graves and rubbing it in.

Their condemnation of the military and the insult to Marines with that vulgar use of their credo...grrr... I'm not a military person but I have family that are serving and have served and this is...

mimartin
03-02-2011, 09:07 PM
I wonder how the Supreme Court would rule on my freedom to kick the crap out of members of the Westboro church. I have a second cousin in Afghanistan; if something happened to him I would strongly suggest they avoid protesting at one of my family’s gatherings. The rest of my family is not as easy going and tolerant as me. :xp:

Don’t like the ruling, but I do agree with it. The price of freedom is it not only protects you, but everyone even those too stupid for their own good.

Darth Avlectus
03-02-2011, 09:54 PM
Ugh dammit. This group of $%&* heads again? Ridiculous.

"I may not agree with what you say but I will defend your right to say it, to the death!"
--unknown

Well, while I do not think that this goes too far w.r.t. freedom of speech as we need shining-plain-as-day-glistening-examples of just exactly what kind of people we do not want to be like, it's still distasteful. Yet still, I have to agree with the ruling for constitution sake. However, I am a firm believer of reciprocity and that such things go both ways, especially in that free speech doesn't need to be with your mouth to make a point or in this case counterpoint if you catch my drift. (If you don't know what I'm getting at, ask Evil Q.)

I'd be all up in their faces if they disrespected a deceased friend of mine like this.

@purifer: Amen brotha! Preach! :dev8:

Qui-Gon Glenn
03-02-2011, 10:46 PM
If they come near me or mine, for whatever reason, I will kill barehandedly as many as I can before I am stopped or dead.

This is a real post.

JediMaster12
03-03-2011, 01:03 PM
However, I am a firm believer of reciprocity and that such things go both ways, especially in that free speech doesn't need to be with your mouth to make a point or in this case counterpoint if you catch my drift. (If you don't know what I'm getting at, ask Evil Q.)


Actually I agree. I was talking about this to someone and I laid down the possibility of how would they feel if I were to show up at one of their funerals or at the cemetery and spit on a family member's grave and rub it in to protest. They'll get their just desserts.

Canaan Sadow
03-03-2011, 02:43 PM
*LOL* From the title of this thread, I thought you meant MICHAEL Phelps.

lmfao I did too xD

As for the funeral protests, they make me sick. Anybody else would be arrested, even a large crowd, if they staged a protest at anybody else's funeral. But, because the crowd in question belongs to a church, their protesting is okay. Wait--what? Non sequitur.

It isn't because they are a church, it's because they're United States Citizens with the right to Freedom of Speech, but I promise you that the founding fathers weren't thinking about such possibilites when they wrote out the Constitution. This goes far beyond freedom of speech. They're trying to completely destroy our Military simply because it is the one place in the United States government that allows homosexuals to be who they are. Granted, the church is saying what most christians (that I know) believe, however they are doing it in a poor manner.

How would they feel if when the pastor died, I gathered a group of protestors that said that Westboro Church and Rev. Fred Phelps are homophobes and they should be destroyed? I'd be taken directly to a lawsuit and sued. But I could play the very same card that they did... "Freedom of Speech" and most likely get out of it, according to what the Supreme Court said.

But doing what they did would be tacky, sure they may deserve something like that but at least most people have the common courtesy not to protest at funerals.

I am also a firm believer that the constitution needs to be amended. I mean hell, it's only a short time until people start murdering or whatever in the name of freedom of speech. Our constitution safeguards many people, but mostly it protects the criminals in our land.

mimartin
03-03-2011, 03:39 PM
I am also a firm believer that the constitution needs to be amended. I mean hell, it's only a short time until people start murdering or whatever in the name of freedom of speech. Our constitution safeguards many people, but mostly it protects the criminals in our land.
How exactly have you come to that conclusion? Westbro is a bunch of hate mongers and homophobes, but they are not ignorant (stupid yes, ignorant no). They are mainly family members of Phelps and many are lawyers themselves. They know exactly how fair to push the law without crossing the line. Thus is how they have been able to retain their tax exempt status for much of their so-called “church” activities.

The Constitution protests everyone. If it only protected those that you or I deemed deserving then it would be a useless document. We are in no danger of people getting away with murder in the name of freedom of speech because the Constitution covers way more than merely the freedom of speech.

Det. Bart Lasiter
03-03-2011, 11:17 PM
Where the **** is all the police brutality at these protests?

Adavardes
03-04-2011, 01:46 AM
The Constitution protests everyone. If it only protected those that you or I deemed deserving then it would be a useless document. We are in no danger of people getting away with murder in the name of freedom of speech because the Constitution covers way more than merely the freedom of speech.

Correct. The first amendment protects rights to free speech only under certain circumstances. There are some mitigating exceptions to the rule that are not protected under Article I. The obvious ones are slander and libel. However, fighting words are also not protected by the rights to free speech. In the wake of the Supreme Court case Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, the Fighting Words Doctrine was put in place.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fighting_words

the U.S. Supreme Court established the doctrine and held that "insulting or 'fighting words,' those that by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace" are among the "well-defined and narrowly limited classes of speech [that] the prevention and punishment of...have never been thought to raise any constitutional problem."

Any speech that can be predicted reasonably to incite immediate violence in a group of individuals is not constitutionally protected. Additionally, any cases of speech that show a clear intention to immediately bring to fruition an act of sedition or treason, rather than simply stating abstract advocacy, is not protected. That means that Westboro isn't untouchable. While I disagree vehemently on a personal level with what they're saying and how they're approaching the situation, they won't get away with much.

The Supreme Court ruled on this as constitutional for now, and I'm fine with that, it fosters healthy debate or whatever. But if members of the funeral procession respond to the protests with violence in the future, or if there's any reason to believe that Westboro is inciting violence from this emotionally compromised group, that will change.

Kael'thas Solo, I believe this is the kind of amendment you were looking for. Good thing it's 69 years old.

urluckyday
03-04-2011, 02:46 AM
Good taste or even just plain old "good people" aside, it's legal for them to voice their opinion, so idk why you'd ever make a ruling against it. I'm sure it pains the supreme court justices as much as it does us...but until they get violent, there's nothing you can do really. I agree with the supreme court, but that doesn't mean that I wouldn't go up and clock one of these people if I saw them doing that sort of thing one day.

The absolute scum of the earth...

Canaan Sadow
03-04-2011, 03:05 AM
How exactly have you come to that conclusion? Westbro is a bunch of hate mongers and homophobes, but they are not ignorant (stupid yes, ignorant no). They are mainly family members of Phelps and many are lawyers themselves. They know exactly how fair to push the law without crossing the line. Thus is how they have been able to retain their tax exempt status for much of their so-called “church” activities.

The Constitution protests everyone. If it only protected those that you or I deemed deserving then it would be a useless document. We are in no danger of people getting away with murder in the name of freedom of speech because the Constitution covers way more than merely the freedom of speech.

I was over exaggerating and making fun of the Supreme Court's decision. Sheesh. :¬:

Liverandbacon
03-04-2011, 08:12 AM
I'm glad they haven't shown at any of the funerals I've attended. It wouldn't end well. I say we round them up and use them to clear minefields. See if they're so happy about IEDs then.

Where the **** is all the police brutality at these protests?

Sadly absent, because many of these scum are lawyers, and know enough not to start throwing rocks at or hitting cops.

mimartin
03-04-2011, 01:39 PM
I was over exaggerating and making fun of the Supreme Court's decision. Sheesh. :¬:

Try harder next time. :xp:

Darth Avlectus
03-05-2011, 01:37 AM
Actually I agree. I was talking about this to someone and I laid down the possibility of how would they feel if I were to show up at one of their funerals or at the cemetery and spit on a family member's grave and rub it in to protest. They'll get their just desserts.

Well yeah. While the difference of what they're doing vs actual inciting violence/slander/libel is a fine line to be sure, that doesn't mean any of us are dumb enough that we cannot perceive at its core one of its main ingredients is deliberate agitation. Afterall, that is precisely why we find it distasteful.

My cuz, I imagine, being a roller derby champ, would probably love just another excuse to get her aggression out.

Canaan Sadow
03-05-2011, 12:27 PM
Try harder next time. :xp:

Apparently. But seriously I do believe that the Bill of Rights should be amended. People get away with too much in the name of Freedom of Speech, Press, Religion, ect... it's like my old AP Gov't teacher said "I can go out and slaughter animals, drink their blood and worship a god of darkness and get away with inhumane animal slaughter in the name of Freedom of Religion" and apparently people can get away with libel at a funeral as long as they don't say specifically what they were thinking and instead make generalizations.

Samuel Dravis
03-05-2011, 01:49 PM
I support the ruling 100%. I have zero faith that the hypothetical free speech deciders will always be people of integrity, unbiased and apolitical. They're people, after all. I don't want someone else's failings getting in the way of my rights.

mimartin
03-05-2011, 01:53 PM
But seriously I do believe that the Bill of Rights should be amended.

The problem with amending the Constitution is our own short sightedness. We are more likely to cause more problems than good by doing so. Also that would be giving people like Westbro exactly what they want, attention. If everyone stopped giving them the attention they so desperately crave, I wonder how long they would continue their idiocy.

Even if a majority of Americans agree to change the Constitution that is no guarantee that it would ever be changed. Just look at the proposed Equal Rights Amendment. It has been around since 1923 and still has not been ratified by the 38 states necessary to make it an amendment.

Not sure who in this day and age could argue that women and men should not have equal protection under the law, but it still isn’t part of our highest legal document.

Liverandbacon
03-06-2011, 05:39 AM
my old AP Gov't teacher said "I can go out and slaughter animals, drink their blood and worship a god of darkness"

I honestly see nothing justifiably bannable about this. Sure, worshiping a 'dark god' screams idiotic teenage rebellion, but there is absolutely no reason to ban it. There is even less reason to restrict people from killing animals (if they're not someone's property), even if I myself might not want to.

Every single person with the will to change the Bill of Rights has a completely different set of moral standards, and who is to say what arbitrary line of 'acceptability' is the line that cannot be crossed.

All I know is, if I were given control of the Bill of Rights to change to reflect my beliefs, a lot of people would not be pleased with the results. Which is why I think neither I nor anyone else should have that power any time soon.

Darth Avlectus
03-06-2011, 05:27 PM
Think of it this way: You want to ban someone's speech because you don't like it--it cuts both way and will backfire as soon as someone new is in power who agrees with them/disagrees with you. This isn't slippery slope, this is the reality of how such a thing works. You ban one person's speech under some definition of bannable, there's nothing stopping anyone else from using and applying that same definition their own way. Eventually it ends up that everyone will have their speech rights crimped and everyone is unhappy, because everyone has to now severely limit what they say and watch carefully. It makes denial of obvious reality not only convenient, but perhaps your MO if you wish to stay free (in the relative sense) or alive, all because now of a broadly defined ambiguous law of that could be subjectively used at the whim of lawmakers. There's nothing free about that, that sound more tyrannous. IMO honesty=/= integrity.

When Rockefeller spoke of limiting free speech, namely to hinder MSNBC and FOX, people on both sides of mainstream and all other freedom loving sides responded overwhelmingly against him. Just my two cents.

Tommycat
03-06-2011, 10:34 PM
@GTA: by the way your quote was a paraphrase of Voltaire.

These buggers were actually planning on protesting the funeral of the little girl slain in the shooting in Tucson. It isn't fair to blame religion. These guys are more of a con game than religion. They specifically try to get people to attack them. Then they sue.

jonathan7
03-07-2011, 03:39 PM
I don't really see why piciting funerals isn't just made illegal... Skirts the whole free speech aspect.

mimartin
03-07-2011, 03:47 PM
I don't really see why piciting funerals isn't just made illegal... Skirts the whole free speech aspect.
Because the law itself would most likely be unconstitutional as it restricts someone’s right to free speech.

Guess we could make a constitutional amendment forbidding protest at funerals, but we can’t even agree on where ground zero ends. There is no way we would get Congress and then 38 states to agree before Westbro has gone the way of the dinosaur.

Samuel Dravis
03-07-2011, 03:55 PM
Basically, it's because then it would set precedent for someone to decide what people can and can't protest on public land. I am not personally willing to allow any of the ideological crazies in charge of the government that ability, even if it does have the unfortunate result that things like this happen occasionally.

Tommycat
03-07-2011, 04:27 PM
Basically, it's because then it would set precedent for someone to decide what people can and can't protest on public land. I am not personally willing to allow any of the ideological crazies in charge of the government that ability, even if it does have the unfortunate result that things like this happen occasionally.

Agree. As much as I dislike WBC and their ilk, I'd rather put up with them than risk someone deciding what free speech really means.

Jae Onasi
03-07-2011, 05:30 PM
This makes me want to join the group that lines the funeral route to protect the family from ever seeing the Westho people.

At least the Supreme court said that nothing in their decision would prevent municipalities from putting some limits on their protesting, such as allowing them no closer than 1000 feet to a funeral procession.

urluckyday
03-07-2011, 06:20 PM
This is the problem with inbreeding. That entire church is made up of like one family, and they all practice the same, warped "understanding" of religion.

I would like to take a swing at any one of them...

Tommycat
03-07-2011, 08:22 PM
This makes me want to join the group that lines the funeral route to protect the family from ever seeing the Westho people.

That would be Project Angel Wings. They use huge wings to block out the WBC

Darth Avlectus
03-08-2011, 01:17 AM
This is the problem with inbreeding. That entire church is made up of like one family, and they all practice the same, warped "understanding" of religion.

I would like to take a swing at any one of them...

Kanabi, sledgehammer, bat anyone? :D

Tommycat
03-08-2011, 02:35 PM
Kanabi, sledgehammer, bat anyone? :D
Personally I'd rather swing a minigun in their direction.

TKA-001
03-08-2011, 08:20 PM
I'd use a nuke.

Samuel Dravis
03-08-2011, 11:27 PM
I hope you guys acknowledge the irony of advocating violent ends to those who disagree with you while believing in your own ability to promote those ends with impunity (which frankly is more deserving of censorship than anything Westboro has said).

purifier
03-09-2011, 01:31 AM
^Not only that, radical religious groups like Westbro would love for anybody to verbally threaten them, or actually do physically harm to them. This way they could come off looking like the victims and be the innocent "poor me" type, while shoveling the "hey were the good guys and look what they did to us, that proves it" to the public.

The best thing to do is a anti protest against this church. You could even push their religious buttons with accusations such as: all of them being possessed and one of their members being the antichrist as I joked about earlier in this thread.

Fight fire with fire I say. :devburn:

mimartin
03-09-2011, 02:00 AM
I don't really think Westbro cares about what others say or think about them as long as people are saying and thinking things about them.

Tommycat
03-09-2011, 02:00 AM
Samuel and Purifier: LIGHTEN THE EFF UP! It was a joke!

While I despise them I have no intention of shooting, maiming, or in any way attacking them physically. They are like the KKK. I have no respect for them whatsoever, but if they want to go and protest, fine. I am however happy that there are groups like "Angel Wings" that use peaceful methods to prevent the grieving families from seeing them. Granted, if I saw someone beating the "pastor" within an inch of his life, I MIGHT just develop amnesia.

And please note that they are barely associated with religion. Their financial structure is wholly supported by litigation. They sue people who attack them. They are like those people who slip and fall in the stores to get money from the store. They don't care about your accusations about them being possessed and being the antichrist. Because frankly they are less about religion and more about tricking people into attacking them.

And sometimes the best way to fight fire is with a liberal application of water. In this case the water is the "Angel Wings" team(also called "Angel Action"). What they do is the following:
Construct a set of large wings roughly 8 feet by 10 feet
Stand as a living wall between the WBC and the mourners
Do not talk to antagonize or otherwise engage the WBC members.

http://www.pbs.org/niot/citizens_respond/media/update02.jpg

purifier
03-09-2011, 04:33 AM
Samuel and Purifier: LIGHTEN THE EFF UP! It was a joke!


Lol. Don't really care about anybody's jokes doing these people any harm TC, I was just pointing a few things out that some MIGHT wanna consider if any were really serious. Otherwise I could really give a flying (you know what) what happens to the WBC. :D


While I despise them I have no intention of shooting, maiming, or in any way attacking them physically. They are like the KKK. I have no respect for them whatsoever, but if they want to go and protest, fine. I am however happy that there are groups like "Angel Wings" that use peaceful methods to prevent the grieving families from seeing them. Granted, if I saw someone beating the "pastor" within an inch of his life, I MIGHT just develop amnesia.

That is completely understandable and I can see your point of view on this. Mine is about the same.

And please note that they are barely associated with religion. Their financial structure is wholly supported by litigation. They sue people who attack them. They are like those people who slip and fall in the stores to get money from the store. They don't care about your accusations about them being possessed and being the antichrist. Because frankly they are less about religion and more about tricking people into attacking them.

Well that was just a suggestion, probably a lousy suggestion on my part, but I was just putting that out there as an example. I didn't know about the "Angel Wings" group, or I probably wouldn't have made any suggestions in the first place.


And sometimes the best way to fight fire is with a liberal application of water. In this case the water is the "Angel Wings" team(also called "Angel Action"). What they do is the following:
Construct a set of large wings roughly 8 feet by 10 feet
Stand as a living wall between the WBC and the mourners
Do not talk to antagonize or otherwise engage the WBC members.

http://www.pbs.org/niot/citizens_respond/media/update02.jpg

Awesome! Now all they need to do is figure out a way to drown out the WBC's voices during their protests. ;)

JediAthos
03-09-2011, 12:03 PM
There was also a group of bikers that were going to the funerals and using their motorcycles to drown out these Westboro clowns...the name of the group escapes me at the moment though.

Sabretooth
03-09-2011, 12:45 PM
They'd be more effective if they considered running over them.

Tommycat
03-09-2011, 01:30 PM
There was also a group of bikers that were going to the funerals and using their motorcycles to drown out these Westboro clowns...the name of the group escapes me at the moment though.

Patriot Guard Riders is one, but most bikers I know are happy to donate their straight pipes to effectively silence WBC.

You know it's bad when even hardcore bikers think you have no class.

Darth Avlectus
03-09-2011, 07:24 PM
They'd be more effective if they considered running over them.

THAT'S RIGHT! It is the first amendment right of all American citizens to make limb stew out of the westborough zealots as well as anyone who disagrees with them! :mad: :carms:

Tysyacha
03-09-2011, 07:28 PM
I am 99.999999% sure Sabretooth was kidding. The other 1% would gawk at the melee.

Darth Avlectus
03-09-2011, 07:38 PM
And I'm 115.99999999999999999999% positive I'm just perpetuating his same sarcasm. If you haven't noticed, Sabre and I run together in the shenanigans business.

To any and all that think I'm serious about going and beating the westborogh numbskulls down unprovoked, read the first line of post#39 primarily directed at sam D. because this applies to you too.

Hey Sabrez, after we're done running over those hicks, what do you say we go get a bite to eat at the black market cannibalism cafe? My treat. :devsmoke:

Sabretooth
03-09-2011, 10:39 PM
And I'm 115.99999999999999999999% positive I'm just perpetuating his same sarcasm. If you haven't noticed, Sabre and I run together in the shenanigans business.
(My stake is 89.72%, by the way)

Hey Sabrez, after we're done running over those hicks, what do you say we go get a bite to eat at the black market cannibalism cafe? My treat. :devsmoke:
Only if we get to stop by Satanic Demon Pirate's for ice cream!

urluckyday
03-10-2011, 05:42 PM
To any and all that think I'm serious about going and beating the westborogh numbskulls down unprovoked, read the first line of post#39 primarily directed at sam D. because this applies to you too.

I'm not kidding...I see nothing wrong with beating the living daylights out of those people even if they don't do anything to me.