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That grieving father won his case!

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Old 10-31-2007, 08:15 PM   #1
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Default That grieving father won his case!

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071031/...neral_protests

I don't like hearing about any of our service people getting killed in Iraq. But when people start protesting outside their funerals, it REALLY makes me angry.

I'm glad this guy won. The reason for the protests was stupid, too! One has nothing to do with the other.
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Old 10-31-2007, 08:18 PM   #2
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The Westboro people are nuts. I try to get worked up about them, but honestly, they are crazy people.

Crazy. People.

I won't link to their website out of personal policy and common decency, but trust me.
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Old 10-31-2007, 08:23 PM   #3
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The link is to the news story. I'm so glad the jury came back with what they did. I don't like those people.
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Old 10-31-2007, 08:32 PM   #4
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No, I won't link to their website. But they have some strongly passionate horrible ideas.

The link to the news article I clicked on. But I won't give them a single click to their site, and I won't link anyone else there.
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Old 10-31-2007, 09:10 PM   #5
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Totally understood. I didn't realize my link would send anyone there.
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Old 10-31-2007, 09:51 PM   #6
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Their attorneys maintained in closing arguments Tuesday that the burial was a public event and that even abhorrent points of view are protected by the First Amendment, which guarantees freedom of speech and religion.
::sigh:: I wonder just how badly our founding fathers would cringe in their graves right now if they knew how their words, meant to enrich our country, could have been turned into such blatant circus side shows and acts of mockery.
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Old 10-31-2007, 11:10 PM   #7
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There was a funeral here last year that these crazy people wanted to protest at, a local radio station was able to convince them to use some air time in exchange for them not to pickett. It worked, thank goodness! Before then I had never even heard of this group Very sad and pathetic that they feel the need to ruin these soldiers funerals.
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Old 11-01-2007, 12:06 PM   #8
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I am glad that father won and wish more families would file lawsuits against these people. They ARE crazy! And it kills me that they have the nerve to call themselves Christians! Thank god for the patriot guard!
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Old 11-01-2007, 01:10 PM   #9
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I'm living about 45 miles from Fred Phelps, so we have to hear about him quite a bit. He's been doing the convoluted argument thing forever. We drove by a theater one day and saw his people (including young grandchildren) protesting a play. We found out the reason was the lead actress was from Canada, and Canada allows gay marriage. And he protests every college graduation here. He's essentially a media whore and the best thing to do is ignore him. But once he realized how much more media attention he would get by protesting military funerals, well, the rest is history.
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Old 11-01-2007, 01:19 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by almostheaven View Post
::sigh:: I wonder just how badly our founding fathers would cringe in their graves right now if they knew how their words, meant to enrich our country, could have been turned into such blatant circus side shows and acts of mockery.
I don't know, one thing I truly admire about the ACLU is that they defend the rights of any group to speak freely, even if you know it must cause their stomachs to churn as they're defending them. I think the founding fathers realized this could happen, and while it is sickening, it takes all kinds of people. The Phelps' viewpoint certainly presents a challenge for most people, and I think that's good to consider and affirm your own beliefs.

I'm not articulating this well. I think the Phelps are despicable, and I don't know anyone who sees them on TV and thinks "What a great idea!" But if we don't allow them to do it, then I'm afraid it becomes a slippery slope.

One of my friends, who happens to be gay, said she feared legislation about protesting at funerals because she'd LOVE to protest at Freddie's funeral. I don't know exactly what to think about that...is it better to rise above or to reply in kind? But I think anyone should have the option to decide.
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Old 11-01-2007, 10:45 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amy8888 View Post
I don't know, one thing I truly admire about the ACLU is that they defend the rights of any group to speak freely, even if you know it must cause their stomachs to churn as they're defending them. I think the founding fathers realized this could happen, and while it is sickening, it takes all kinds of people.
I'm not sure the founding fathers had any inkling. When they drafted our rights, I'm certain they would never have thought that the KKK would walk into a black church and claim freedom of speech. I'm sure they never thought ****s would walk into a Bar Mitzvah to exercise their freedom either. Or more likely, they probably never thought their sons and daughters would put up with it. And I seriously doubt they would EVER have thought ANY American would be so insanely crazy, much less an entire group of them, to protest a soldier's funeral.
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Old 11-01-2007, 11:00 PM   #12
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I am very hesitant to celebrate this verdict. What they do is morally reprehensible, utterly disgusting, and completely unnecessary. Period.

However, lots of people believe that about lots of things. And given our current administration and the way people try to shut down speech they disagree with more and more frequently, I think it sets a dangerous precedent to hold someone liable for damages caused by no more than speaking their (incredibly misguided, disgusting, morally reprehensible) ideas and not breaking any laws.

If they had been in a state where protesting within X # of feet of a funeral was illegal (as it is, because of them, in several states), it'd be a different story. But a multi-million dollar fine just for speaking aggressively in a particular situation? Bad precedent, in my opinion. Not quite as scary as they are, but still scary.
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Old 11-01-2007, 11:37 PM   #13
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I saw Shirley Phelps On TV, in a live debate with a news cast... all I can say, is that these people don't need others to tell them they're crazy.... their image and argument speaks for themselves...

lunatics.. no wonder they only have 100 family members as followers...
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Old 11-01-2007, 11:55 PM   #14
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Freedom of speech gives us the right to speak our minds without fear of punishment from the federal government. However, this does not mean that it is without reprecussions of any kind.

Were I to slander someone the goverment couldn't lock me up, but the person who I slandered could in fact sue me over it, and were I guilty, I would most likely owe them a chunk of change that I do not have.

These people with their protesting are perfectly allowed to protest when and where they want when they get the proper permits to do so. If they follow those guidelines then they won't be arrested or taken to jail. But, I'm not so sure it legally protects them from being sued.

I agree that this is a slippery slope. I enjoy my free speech. (I sure use it often enough.) And while I am smiling and nodding to the verdit, there's still a part of me that's asking "Uh... Is this morally okay when I think everyone deserves the freedom to speak their mind?"

At the moment I'm justifying it by thinking that the protesting group was slandering that soldier and so that's why it's okay!
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Old 11-02-2007, 12:06 AM   #15
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A type of defamation. Slander is an untruthful oral (spoken) statement about a person that harms the person's reputation or standing in the community. Because slander is a tort (a civil wrong), the injured person can bring a lawsuit against the person who made the false statement. If the statement is made via broadcast media -- for example, over the radio or on TV -- it is considered libel, rather than slander, because the statement has the potential to reach a very wide audience.

I wish it counted, because I, like you, really want to believe that there is a valid reason for suing their pants off. But unfortunately, that group is VERY careful about doing everything legal to the letter.
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