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Banning Protests At Funerals

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[color=#606060]I would be worried about a precedent if the family [i]didn't[/i] win.

I would hate the thought that people have free reign to protest at funerals, which would have to be one of the most sacred events in the life of any family.[/color]

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[COLOR="RoyalBlue"][FONT="Lucida Sans Unicode"][quote name='Retribution'][font=Arial] However this sets a precedent for banning protest from places like outside a court-house or legsilative building, with no better citation than "for the common welfare" or some such thing. And that is truly frightening.[/font][/QUOTE]They aren't being stopped from protesting altogether, they're being required to do so about 300 feet away from the funeral. Also, funerals have absolutely nothing to do with legislation or new laws or making changes in the government. It's someone who's dead being laid to rest, not some form of government proceedings where your voice has a chance of being heard since you disagree with how the government is doing something. It's like protesting against general motors since you hate their cars. Only instead of going straight to the manufacturer you've choosen to protest in someone's driveway because someone owns one of their vehicles and it's parked there. It changes nothing and makes you look like an idiot.

If this group dislikes homosexuality so much they should be fighting to support legislation like the bans on gay marriage instead of telling people in the military that they are glad their son is dead. I would imagine that is why the lost the lawsuit, it's easy to see that they didn't care if they hurt the family that was simply having their son put to rest. And to make it even worse, most if not all of the funeral's for people they've protested at weren't even gay. It's them attempting to hide behind the freedom of speech to spout their hate messages without repercussions or regards to the damage to those caught in the middle. [/FONT][/COLOR]

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[font=Arial]I was not arguing that the form of protest is intelligent, logical, or effective. I was arguing that protest should be allowed on public grounds. And yes, this could set a startling precedent. Who's to say protest will be banned within x-hundred feet from a federal building after this? Would not this be a logical law to make, if the grounds of this one is "For the common decency"? Certainly you can see the ridiculous loopholes that could be exploited from this.

I understand that it is a protest done in terrible taste, but restricting free speech in this respect doesn't seem right to be. I agree that the protest should be stopped if it's done on private property, but I'm extremely wary of limiting civil liberties after the Bush Administration.[/font]

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[color=#606060]I never really buy the slippery slope argument though. If we applied that logic to everything, we'd never be able to regulate anything effectively.

It's perfectly reasonable to say to a group that yes, they can protest on public property...but that under certain circumstances they must maintain a reasonable distance.

You'll find that this is probably already enforced under various circumstances anyway, just not funerals.

I don't see that this limits free speech, it just makes sure that people have the right to be heard without harming or impeding on the rights of others.

All too often I think we use the monicker of free speech without realising that sometimes one group completely overbears another - or at least, that unregulated access for one group might mean suffering for another.

Ultimately you have to try to maintain that balance. Freedom of speech is not all-encompassing - nobody is telling anyone else what they can or can't say. All they're saying is that [i]where[/i] you make that protest should be at least mildly regulated.

Still doesn't stop you from having a street parade or starting a web site or whatever else.

We have to be very careful when we broadly talk about civil liberties being eroded; I think it's important to make contrasts and to understand the difference between freedom of speech and personal responsibility.[/color]

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[quote name='James'][color=#606060]I never really buy the slippery slope argument though. If we applied that logic to everything, we'd never be able to regulate anything effectively.[/color][/QUOTE]

Wen was the last time you saw a slippery slope argument that wasn't a misleading fallacy, anyway?

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[FONT="Arial"][SIZE="1"]

I agree, in some respects, with Retribution. America most definitely needs to be wary of banning the right to protest on public propery, but I think that protecting the families of deceased soldiers is far more important than WBC's right to bash homosexuality. Also, the argument that they are making has nothing at all to do with the funerals of the soldiers. If they were protesting at any sort of government establishment then I would understand, but all they are trying to do is cause hate, distress, and disorder.

Though this has little to do with the argument, I found some chilling quotes on Wikipedia. It scares me that anyone would be a follower of a lunatic who utters such nonsense.

[Quote=Wikipedia][FONT="Arial"][SIZE="1"]

"America is doomed and cursed by God irreversibly".

"It's too late to pray for America. It's a sin to pray for America".

"Hurricane Rita is an answer to the prayers of the suffering saints of Westboro Baptist Church".

"The Lord God Almighty killed [the people who died on 9/11], looked at them in the face, laughed and mocked at each one of them as he cast each one of them into hell".

"Nobody that's intelligent and that fears God will fly the American flag any way but upside-down, the international symbol of distress".

"All ye having business before this honorable [Supreme] Court draw nigh, give your attention and ye shall be heard. No, no. Draw nigh and bend over. They're gonna rape you up the butt".

"The President of the United States gets his jollies masturbating horses". (This was a reference to a joke told by Laura Bush about her husband's attempt to milk a male horse).

"The hell with your flag. The hell with your *** army, your *** courts, your ***-run government".

"This is the hypocritical, ***-infested, ***-run United States of America and we're supposed to respect that *** rag flag?"

"The red on that flag stands for *** rectal blood".

"On Pope John Paul II's watch, the Roman Catholic Church became the church of the holy pedophiles. And sodomite feces replaced the wafer for their communion service. And Sodomite semen replaced the wine that the Pope drinks".

"1.07 billion members of that monstrous machine called the Roman Catholic Church. Every last one of them going to hell".

"You tweaked His nose, you jackass!" (Referring to George W. Bush.)

"You're gonna eat your babies!" (In reference to Deuteronomy 28:53.)

[/SIZE][/FONT][/quote]

He also believes that the members of his church are the majority of the only few 'elected by God' to be allowed into heaven, and that anyone who does not agree with them and aid the protests claiming "God Hates America and God Hates Fags" is going to hell. They are obviously choosing to ignore that lovely bit in the Bible that states that "God hates sin, not the sinner." These sort of wacked-out morons are the reason that most people see Christians in a bad light.

Back on subject. I, essentially, agree with the banning of protests at funerals. I also think that Phelps getting sued for all he's worth isn't a bad idea.

[/SIZE][/FONT]

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[color=#9933ff][font=lucida calligraphy]Okay again I'm going to skim through the first four pages and just reply.

Westburo (spe) Baptist church, they were on 20/20 last week going on about how 'God Hates Soldiers' and telling people that they're children are burning in hell. Joy.

I heard about this suit in Maryland. Apperantly the Maryland Supreme court decided that this church's (and I use the term loosely) signs and language was too vulgar to be protected by the first ammendment.

Honestly I think the government should go a step further and remove the children of that congretion from their homes and place them in families to be re-programed as productive members of society. Yeah, taking kids from a family is usually done as a last resort, but this is boarderline child abuse and endangerment.

And for my final thought, I wonder if they know those 'wonderful' little girls from Prussian Blue.[/color][/font]

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Yeah this is the first time that i have heard of this .... so called church.
As in only because of the protest at the funeral's of the dead soldiers.

Any ways, I live in Canada, I do not believe in ANY god because its all too judge mental for my likings, if i go to hell for being as good of a person i can be then i do so knowing i lived as best i could.

As for what they are doing, disrespecting the dead like that, i would have thrown them ALL in jail, every one of them that protested and waves one of the banners, should not be allowed to do that.

Look at Waco (sp?) how it started off, just a small church or what ever you want to call it, then it turned into that.

As Yoda would say *Anger leads to hate, Hate leads to the Dark side* now just replace Dark side with Violence.

Do i agree with the war? no, but am i going to protest the dead? OH HELL NO!

I don't know what you all feel about it one way or another, but this is what i think of.

IN FLANDERS FIELDS the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

Meaning that no matter what side your on, you have some one that once loved you in one way or another, and that person that is on the other side of you does too.

show respect to the ones that have, will and are going to die, be it yesterday, today or tomorrow, they all had lives that they lived. :bow:

OH and about your American amendments, you used to have slavery as one of your rights, it took a war to have that one removed, so just because you say its in your amendment, does not mean it will stay that way.

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[quote name='spy46']
As Yoda would say *Anger leads to hate, Hate leads to the Dark side* now just replace Dark side with Violence.[/QUOTE]

Yeah, about that... The quote is: "Fear leads to Anger, Anger leads to Hate, Hate... leads to Suffering."

Not once did he actually mention the Dark Side.[/fanboyrant]

I don't think Yoda would approve of any of this, though.

[quote name='spy46']
As for what they are doing, disrespecting the dead like that, i would have thrown them ALL in jail, every one of them that protested and waves one of the banners, should not be allowed to do that.[/quote]

That's funny, I would have thrown them in the nearest volcano, myself.

Much Nerdiness Yoda senses in me,
-Ace

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[FONT="Arial"][SIZE="1"]

[quote name='spy46']
Do i agree with the war? no, but am i going to protest the dead? OH HELL NO!
[/QUOTE]

The Westboro Baptist Church is not concerned with war, nor is war the root of the protests. Allow me to reiterate?

Westboro Baptist Church believes that they are God's 'Chosen People', and that noone who is not predestined by God for heaven can be saved. Thier only motive is to spread the word that "God hates Fags" and that America, by allowing rights to homosexuals in certain states and degrees, is going against God's word. Therefore, by association, we can assume that God hates America because God hates homosexuals, and America condones homosexuality.

WBC thinks that God is killing soldiers to punish America for the actions of homosexuals and the view of homosexuals by Americans.



[B]*The above is not the beliefs of the poster, but is a paraphrase of the ideals of Westboro Baptist Church and its members, led by Fred Phelps*[/B]



And don't even get me started on Prussian Blue.[/SIZE][/FONT]

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[quote name='sakurasuka'][FONT="Arial"][SIZE="1"]Westboro Baptist Church believes that they are God's 'Chosen People', and that noone who is not predestined by God for heaven can be saved. [/SIZE][/FONT][/QUOTE]

[SIZE="1"]I'm guessing they all believe God gave them the thumbs-up before conception ? I can't wait to see the look on their face when they get to the Gates and realise the Catholics are right and predestination is a crock. :animesmil

No offense intended to any Protestants here who believe in predestination of course. :animeswea[/SIZE]

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[FONT=Arial]The funny thing about predestination is that, if it is true, no one can know that they are actually preordained. To me, religious discrimination in this light makes no sense.

I know the verse(s) this doctrine is based upon, but the truth of the matter is a temporal issue, and not many laymen think about temporal issues all that much. Paul, the guy who wrote the letter, was a scriptural genius, and getting to his level of "mental-ness" is a feat in itself.[/FONT]

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Groups like that church and to be frank any declaration of being right and the other's view is wrong... That always brings out the stubborn side of me that would love nothing better than for all of us to get to heaven and find out that everyone was wrong. Including the religion I belong to. Why? I don't know, It's just a side of religion that I find distasteful in the extreme. Having the arrogance to think you are correct when no one really knows, no matter how much they might argue otherwise. Though that group protesting at the funerals take that attitude to the extreme and I hardly consider them Christians in any sense of the word.

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Based on what i had seen about them protesting at the funerals of dead soldiers, i figured that they were in some way related to the war its self.

I think some of the banners said things like.
*thank god for dead soldiers* *soldiers in Iraq deserve death* and other things like that

As for the Yoda thing, not only has it been a while, but i was trying to shorten it up ... but I'm sure he said some thing about the dark side .... unless it was later on and he commented on it.

Oh and i think it would be worse to have them in jail, put them in a nice cell with a big man named bubba that will make them realize just what they lost on the out side :p

A quick death for them, even if it was to burn, would be more than they deserve.

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[quote name='spy46']As for the Yoda thing, not only has it been a while, but i was trying to shorten it up ... but I'm sure he said some thing about the dark side .... unless it was later on and he commented on it.[/QUOTE]

Actually, right before that quote, if I remember correctly, he said that "Fear is the path to the dark side," so you're kind of right.

I was just letting my inner nerd get the better of me.

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It's a sad thing, that's for sure...

I hate to claim Kansas as my home state because of the Westboro Baptist Church... The really sad thing is knowing one of the soldiers that they protested at in Norman, OK about two years ago, which is what led Oklahoma to ban the protests. I don't even want to imagine what I would have done had I been at that funeral... Or for that matter, if they had been at one of the funerals I had attended. (Because I know that if they had found out about it, they would have been there) Yes, I realize that wouldn't be smart on my part, but what they're doing is wrong.

What really gets me is how they can be so self-absorbed... How can the Westboro Church actually say that God cares about them SO much, that he would punish others for it!?!? I've read a bit on their official site. They claim that predestination has determined who goes to hell and who doesn't, and that God is only good to those whom he already knows will be attending heaven. They claim that they have the right to pass judgement on God's behalf as long as they are not guilty of the sin themselves.

I don't beleive in either God or Lucifer, but it sounds to me they've got the two mixed up. They sound more like the Calvinists of the Old World than the baptists. "God hates fags," No, you hate. The God they preach about, the same one I grew up with as a child, is not capable of such deep hatred over the violence President Bush has caused... Violence is all over the world (I mean look at the church; they're inspiring some) but they want to point fingers at Bush... They completely ignore the issues as to why we're at war right now. They talk about the wrath and vengence of God upon America, but what about our wrath and vengance? We don't have a right to stand up to what we think is right. (Not that most American's still stand behind Bush's decisions anymore, but that's beside the point. And don't give me the whole "Do not kill," bull. Remember the crusades)

They're obsessed with themselves... I only suppose it's going to take a huge tornado that tears apart the Westboro Baptist Church to make them see the error of their ways.

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[quote name='spy46']
I think some of the banners said things like.
*thank god for dead soldiers* *soldiers in Iraq deserve death* and other things like that
[/QUOTE]

[FONT="Arial"][SIZE="1"]
Yes, and it would not be illogical to come to that conclusion at all, but war doesn't have anything to do with it. I honestly don't understand how WBC connected soldiers dying to the fact that 'God hates fags' in the first place, because it doesn't even make the slightest bit of sense.

It also bothers me that they are using hateful language in thier protests. If they were merely protesting to 'get the word out', then I would just call them crazies. But the way they are de-humanizing people is nothing short of painful psychological attacks on another person's character.

So this makes them not only nutters, but also terrorists. I wonder how long this will be allowed to continue.

[/SIZE][/FONT]

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[FONT="Trebuchet MS"][COLOR="Green"]One of the guys in my class in high school had a brother die over in Iraq and some people (I'm assuming these Westboro guys) wanted to protest, but they ended up not doing so. That was because some hardcore biker gang was following the funeral procession, intimidating any protesters. Good call on their part too. They were really effective, and patriotic. The protesters ended up going home.[/COLOR][/FONT]

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Being a soldier myself, this story fills me with a great deal of anger at the very thought of it. Protesting a soldiers funeral for gods sake! These people oughta be castrated so they can't spread their diseased seed through out the country.

And even if it wasn't a soldier, or even prostesting the funeral itself, Protesting at a grave yard during a funeral, no matter what the cause, just reeks of bad taste. I can't even imagine the ind of audacity it takes to even consider that kind of idea. And now they make a matter of freedom of speech, and the right to protest like the cowards they are. They wanna picket a soldiers funeral, a man who died so they could have the right to do this crap, and then want to shield themselves with the consitution.

Have you ever noticed how cowards like these always hide behind freedom. Using it as an excuse to spread messages of hate and build contempt for there fellow man, but they'll never to an honorable thing like stand in it's defence like that brave man, who's funeral they protested. They should all burn in hell for that crap!

Sorry. Got a little distracted. I just find the whole idea repulsive and there [B]SHOULD[/B] be laws to stop this kind of thing.

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