U.S. Court rightly nixes Missouri ban on ‘profane, rude, indecent’ speech outside houses of worship

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Photo by Rebecca Barray via Flickr

Photo by Rebecca Barray via Flickr

Photo by Rebecca Barray via Flickr

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On Monday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit declared Missouri’s 2012 House of Worship Protection Act unconstitutional on First Amendment grounds for its subjective ban on “profane discourse,” and “rude or indecent behavior.” Good call.

  • EJD

    I do not concur with everything you say.
    I agree there should be no law against what you call free speech but is actually unprovoked, targeted, “in your face” hate speech outside a house of worship. There should also not be a law against it outside of atheists’ homes. It may be a legal “right” but it is not socially right or morally right. It is neither a human right nor a legal right for roving gangs of narcissistic thugs to inflict pain upon other human beings for sport.
    This particular discussion is not about difference of opinion; it’s about senseless attack on the sensibilities of others. If what you dismiss as “rudeness” took place in the town square it would constitute free speech. When it’s done to disrupt the rights of others right outside their front door and cause them to fear for their safety then it is hate speech. There still shouldn’t be a law against it but that doesn’t make it right or defensible.
    There’s a saying, “Don’t be so open-minded your brain falls out.” That may have happened here.

  • “it’s about senseless attack on the sensibilities of others.”

    There is nothing wrong with attacking “sensibilities”.
    Sensibilities are not people.

  • Judy Jones

    Thankfully the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on the side of exposing the truth and protecting kids today.
    Judy Jones, SNAP Midwest Associate Director, USA, 636-433-2511. snapjudy@gmail.com,
    SNAP (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests)

  • Mark

    It’s called private property rights.