March 3, 2011

Justice Alito’s Got It Right

At least, he’s the only one who made any sense in this instance.

The Supreme Court ruled decisively Wednesday that a fringe anti-gay group has a constitutionally protected right to stage hateful protests at the funerals of dead servicemen, saying “such speech cannot be restricted simply because it is upsetting or arouses contempt.”

In one of the year’s most closely watched cases, the Supreme Court in an 8-1 decision upheld a lower-court ruling to throw out a multimillion-dollar judgment that the father of a dead U.S. Marine from Maryland had won against the Westboro Baptist Church.

Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., in writing the majority opinion, noted that “speech is powerful” and can “inflict great pain.”

“On the facts before us, we cannot react to that pain by punishing the speaker,” the chief justice wrote. “As a nation, we have chosen a different course — to protect even hurtful speech on public issues to ensure that we do not stifle public debate.”

Public debate? What the slugs from Westboro Baptist Church contribute is nothing more than unconscionable harassment of grieving families to an extent that rather than a friendly ruling by the Supreme Court, they should be hit with a blanket restraining order from going within 100 miles of the funeral of any slain American military hero.

Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. rebuked the majority and wrote in a blistering dissent that “our profound national commitment to free and open debate is not a license for the vicious verbal assault that occurred in this case.”

Justice Alito wrote that Westboro Baptist’s attacks “make no contribution to public debate” and “allowing family members to have a few hours of peace without harassment does not undermine public debate.”

Westboro Baptist’s “outrageous conduct caused the petitioner great injury, and the court now compounds that injury by depriving the petitioner of a judgment that acknowledges the wrong he suffered,” Justice Alito wrote.

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

Those Westboro Baptist Church creatures would best serve our nation by crawling back under their stone.

by @ 12:38 pm. Filed under The Court
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4 Responses to “Justice Alito’s Got It Right”

  1. Always On Watch Says:

    These worms from WBB are likely to get something really drastic happening to their members. I do know several military families who simply will not tolerate the disruption of the funerals of their loved ones.

  2. Mrs. Wolf Says:

    Always On Watch

    My husband spent most of his career gone, if you know what I mean, on our country’s business, and while he could never discuss his work (not only what he was doing, but where he was going or where he’d been), it was understood that he might come home in a coffin or he might not make it home at all. I understood that his was among the most respectable of callings, that of putting his life on the line so that other Americans might continue to enjoy liberty.

    I grew up in Cuba, I know something about enjoying liberty here in America.

    I can’t think of anyone else, even anyone who had been in a much safer line of work and home every night, that I would rather have as a husband or as the father of my children.

    Having said that, had he been, as he called it, “unlucky”, and a troop of Fred Phelps disciples had shown up anywhere near his funeral, the reaction those sick perverts would have experienced would have been majorly injurious to as many of them as weren’t able to disperse and run away very quickly.

  3. Always On Watch Says:

    My young cousin, a Marine, is due to be deployed to Afghanistan on Sunday.

    If the worst happens and these shits from WBC show up, my cousin’s father will do something drastic.

  4. Mrs. Wolf Says:

    Always On Watch

    Good for him!

    It really is time that these satanists in Christians’ clothing find that there is a price to pay for monstrous behavior.

    They may be able to hide behind the Supreme Court for judicial immunity, but when they vindictively, obnoxiously and without reasonable cause provoke the rage of the common man, it is another matter entirely.

    At times, our house is like Grand Central Station for Very Spooky Military Types, and so would a funeral be for any one of these occasional visitors (friends, old friends and old comrades of my hubby). Mr. Phelps would definitely wish he was somewhere else within seconds of disrupting one of their funerals. :-)