SCOTUS Upholds Freedom of Speech When it Comes to Westboro Baptists

Mrs. Bulldog and I were discussing this issue just this past week and came up with a solution which would uphold the 1st Amendment, yet curtail the activities of the Westboro Baptists:  Remove any police presence from affected military funerals and just let the mourners (who most likely will have a few battle-hardened soldiers in their midst) take matters into their own hands.  Put the fear of God into the Westboros, as it were, and make them think twice about their chosen strategy.

As an added bonus, affected mourners can always sue the Westboros for having incited any riots that might break out.  Problem solved!

Yup, like I learned the hard way when I was younger; you have the right to free speech, but you better be willing to live with the potentially painful consequences if someone doesn’t like what you’re saying:

Westboro nut cases owe the Founding Fathers one
Commentary: Rally round the First Amendment even in the face of hate mongering

CHICAGO (MarketWatch) — For a little church in Kansas, it has an awfully big mouth. But as repugnant as what its members spout is, the government has no place in shutting their pie holes.

The Supreme Court didn’t put it exactly that way Wednesday when it upheld an appeals courts ruling that overturned a big monetary judgment against Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kan. But the sentiment of the 8-1 decision amounts to the same thing.

The foresighted folks who wrote our Constitution didn’t make any distinctions about the type of speech they were protecting when they added the First Amendment. They just said Congress shall make no law abridging the freedom of speech.

That broad principal worked out well for the church members of Westboro. Despite their despicable tactics of picketing the funerals of military members in order to spew their nonsense that God is punishing the U.S. for “the sin of homosexuality,” the Constitution, and the Court, says they can go right on spewing and don’t have to pay $10.9 million in lawsuit damages.

And we should revel in that decision. We don’t have to like the message, or think much more of the messengers than we would of toadstools, but we sure have to like the fact that we are free to say what we think, thanks to the First Amendment.

That bit of our heritage was a brazen statement about the promise, and the pig sty, that is democracy — that only a completely open society, tolerant of all views, would thrive. And it sure does get messy in that sty, as we’ve seen not just in this case but in everything from the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords to statehouse budget-cut protests.

So thank you, Westboro Baptist Church, for reminding us again what we value in this country, which is not you. We’d exercise our rights to come down to Topeka and picket your sorry little establishment, but you’re just not worth it.

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18 Comments on “SCOTUS Upholds Freedom of Speech When it Comes to Westboro Baptists”

  1. CavMom Says:

    I would like to play their game by picketing Phelps everywhere he goes. My signs will say; Honk if you think Fred Phelps and his followers are FAGS.

    I know that is a slam on the gay community, but it should put a burr under his saddle.

  2. CavMom Says:

    Or walk around the picketers who are holding signs stating that “God hates Fags” … carrying my sign that says “I think Fred Phelps is a Fag”

  3. phelps and his west boroians have little regard for the lives of those who are deceased. Nor thier feelings of the families left behind.

    To me phelps and his unholy band of facists are neither Christian, Nor part of the Christian churches Baptist denomination and thier message is contrary to Jesus teachings.

    Yes phelps has one this round. But the more people he angers the more lawsuits happen against him and worse yet. There will be those who will use crimniality against him. Its only a matter of time…

  4. memaw Says:

    I’m sure if I were holding a sign near a Muslim funeral, of them being pedophiles, wife abusers, murderers, my freedom of speech would not be upheld through the Supreme Court…yet these so called Christians can hold these signs up at funeral services, of our dedicated men and women in the armed forces who are fighting for their freedom to hold up their stupid signs!!!

    • Exactly what I was thinking when the SCOTUS ruling came in at 8 to 1. I figured if I was protesting a bunch of Muzzies, the split would have been more like 5 to 4 as the four America-hating Lefturds on the Supreme Court obviously voted in favor of the Westboros not so much on the uncorruptibility and sacrosanctity of the 1st Amendment but because, like them, the Westboros also hate America. Birds of a feather and all that jazz.

      If Obama has his way and replaces just one more Supreme Court Justice, well… Let’s just say you can kiss the 1st Amendment goodbye when it comes to speaking out against Islam.


  5. Leatherneck Says:

    I’ll bet it will be an evening funeral, and these so called Christians will have protested the wrong funeral. Out of the flank will come someones Father, and head butt the largest protester, followed by kicks to the ribs. It will be a Father that has been in fights before. Perhaps, one that was close to their fallen son or daughter, and very strong.

    I can not see how the rest turns out, but most of the protesters will run for their lives once they look on the face of their attacker.

    It is just my guess.

  6. tgusa Says:

    Why don’t they have to get a permit? Because the guvmint of the USA is the greatest perpetrator of racism classism and unconstitutional practices of all. The average TEA partier can interpret the laws of the land better than those who are supposedly at the top of the law profession. How low can we go is the question?

    The guvmint has no business regulating protests, however, invading private property, inhibiting the flow of traffic, violence or aggression, those things we have laws against, protests on guvmint (public) property must follow the constitution. There are different laws for public/private property, its part of the constitutional package. The USA has become a place where equal protection under the law is no where to be found and that is the root cause of much of the unrest. Go ahead DC, regulate yourselves right out of existence, let the riots begin, but remember the golden rule of leftist change, the more gold you have the more danger you are in.

    It may come to the point where we see our reps fleeing to a deserted isle, which I think, could be a good thing. The fact is Americans are no longer equal, made less equal by DC policies. Some Americans are capable of self rule, self control etc etc, these Americans have little use for the guvmint, now if you want to keep your guvmint job, the status quo, you have to make more of the second group of people, and so they do.

    I am beginning to think that the more educated you are the less chance there is of you being able to reason. I am also beginning to think that this has been done on purpose. Most of us cannot help feeling superior to these people because we are, but they chose the road they have taken, not us.

  7. senor doeboy Says:

    Merchants are allowed to refuse service to people. All merchant should refuse to deal with these freaks, then they will have to grow their own food and make their own clothes, drill for oil on their own land to fuel their cars, you get the picture.

  8. Bob Says:

    I hate idiots that constantly scream about their ‘rights’ but absolve themselves of any personal responsibility.
    In spite of what passes for conventional wisdom these days, there are no rights without responsibility.

    • tgusa Says:

      The Constitution and the laws of our land require great personal responsibility. What follows is civic responsibility which leads to fair treatment that leads to a stable environment in which to seek prosperity. Personal responsibility is not for everyone even though liberals tried to tell us it was. We can all see the result of the lack of personal responsibility, the root of everything American.

      Our greatest problem is the flood of irresponsible immigrants, in the past we could deal with our own irresponsible but with these others it has overwhelmed the system. In some areas we see a devolution of personal responsibility and we have to stand up and say, you are free to do that but don’t blame us for the consequences.

    • Good point!


  9. tgusa Says:

    Fred Phelps ran for public office five times, he ran as a democrat. Yep he’s a leftist and leftism covers a broad strata of society, leftisms most notable feature is the micro group. This is what we get when leftists become religious, so it must be true that leftism is a mental disorder.

    Isn’t it funny how every time the state media attempts to cover people as reich wing extremists they always turn out to be lefty’s in disguise? Well really not disguised as much as just ignored. It becomes really hard to be fair and balanced when you are dealing with the unfair and unbalanced.

  10. Objective Says:

    “Yup, like I learned the hard way when I was younger; you have the right to free speech, but you better be willing to live with the potentially painful consequences if someone doesn’t like what you’re saying:”

    Does that apply to Danish cartoons and Mohammed posters? Hypocrite. Oooooh, burn.

    • tgusa Says:

      So in pastryland cartoons are the same as funerals. Let me see if I have this thing buttered on the right side, cartoons cause the same sorts of emotional reactions as death? A cartoon in a magazine is on the level of laying your child to rest? Are you insane? Do you see alot of us attacking these louts, do you see alot of us attacking cartoonists, after all, I and many others here are regularly insulted by the media, cartoons, magazine articles, movies, books, plays, politicians, Europeans, Muslims, fruitcakes and pastry nuts and on and on ad infinitum.

      There is more than one way to prepare a danish. Feelings get hurt, peoples views of themselves sometimes become dark and brooding. In some cases that may lead to suicide, are we to blame for that too? There is also a certain amount of Heavenly judgment that will be coming down on the heads of these luciferian tools but we won’t speak about that, judgment is mine sayeth the Lord.

      • tgusa Says:

        On the other hand, intentionally causing grief, a complete lack of consideration for your fellow mans suffering, well, who does that remind you of? It could lead to, well, the attacking or killing of people you don’t agree with.

  11. islams not for me Says:

    Well since we dont live under Danish (or pastry) law I dont know.

    However since those moslems in those areas have reacted like low life criminals it seems that they cant stand it when someone criticizes thier false profit.

    Which of course means you use your rights or loose them to the leftists and thier boyfriends the moslems in Europe.

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