Funeral Protests by Westboro Baptist Church are not protected by Constitution

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posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 12:52 PM
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In the context of freedom of speech , where do your rights end and mine begin ? I want you to think about that for a moment .

I normally don't get involved in the sordid mess of political issues , but I feel this latest fiasco by westboro needs to be addressed in a logical manner , from a constitutional standpoint .

Having replied to a poster in another thread on this issue , as an after-thought , I felt this issue deserved a thread of it's own .

I see numerous posters on here who say that westboro is protected by the First Amendment , in regards to protesting at funerals .

Those who are posting these claims could not be further from the truth .

The First Amendment , in the Bill of Rights , states in part : " Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech , ...".

The First Amendment prohibits CONGRESS , and CONGRESS ONLY , from "abridging" the freedom of speech . CONGRESS , and ONLY Congress , "shall make no law" abridging the freedom of speech . This prohibition is directed at Congress only , and applies to no other entity , such as State Government .

So , what does this mean ? It means that Congress does not have the power to make any law(s) that would abridge freedom of speech . It does not state , nor does it imply , that individual states are prohibited from making such laws .

And before any of you decide to challenge this and tell me how wrong I am , let's take a look at the 10th Amendment :

" The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution , nor prohibited by it to the States , are reserved to the States respectively , or the people ."

What this means , in the context of freedom of speech , is that the power to make any law(s) that would abridge freedom of speech , was not delegated to Congress , by the Constitution .

" ... nor prohibited by it to the States ..." . The power to make such a law(s) , by any State , was not and is not , prohibited by the Constitution . Therefore , the individual States are not prohibited from abridging the rights of westboro to protest at funerals . As a matter of fact , several states have already enacted measures that curtail the so-called "rights" of westboro to protest at funerals .

Meaning , the First Amendment protects you from Congress . Nowhere , does it imply that it protects you from laws that may be enacted by any given State .

In further support of my assertion that westboro has no constitutional right to protest at funerals , let's now take a look at the 9th Amendment :

" The enumeration in the Constitution , of certain rights , shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people ."

Meaning , the First Amendment enumerates that it is illegal for Congress to make any law(s) that would curtail your freedom of speech . It thereby implies that you indeed , have freedom of speech . In 1791 , when the Bill Of Rights was ratified , it was commonly accepted that freedom of speech was a " God-given" right , therefore , the framers of this document did not feel it was necessary to explicitly state that you are 'guaranteed' freedom of speech .

The First Amendment does not guarantee you the "right" to freedom of speech . It only guarantees that you are protected from Congress passing laws that would infringe upon your freedom of speech . To them , freedom of speech was a natural right , just as natural as sunshine and breathing . Their intentions were to prevent CONGRESS from encroaching upon this "God-given" right .

With this in mind , it goes without saying that they considered freedom of speech to be your right . In this context , freedom of speech was "enumerated" as a "certain right" , within the framework of the First Amendment .

Now , taking that with us as we look at the 9th Amendment again , the enumeration of freedom of speech as a certain right " shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people ." In other words , just because they considered freedom of speech to be a right , they explicitly state here in the 9th Amendment , that their consideration of such , should not be construed to "deny or disparage others (rights) retained by the people" .

Simply put , your freedom of speech does not guarantee you the right to deny or disparage the rights of other people .

This is where your rights end and mine begin .

Random House Dictionary :

disparage : (1) to speak of or treat slightingly .

(to) slight : (5) to ignore contemptuously . (7) contemptuous discourtesy .

In conclusion , westboro Baptist Church has a right to freedom of speech UNTIL the exercise of that right disparages the rights of others .

westboro Baptist Church , by protesting funerals , is contemptuously ignoring the rights of the families to conduct services for their loved ones without being harASSed and ridiculed by phelps and his minions .

westboro Baptist Church is showing contemptuous discourtesy to the deceased and their families by protesting funerals .

Therefore , westboro's actions are UNCONSTITUTIONAL according to the 9th Amendment , thereby negating their ill-conceived 1st Amendment right to freedom of speech .

So yes , there is a Constitutional line that has been drawn by the 9th Amendment .

westboro's protests ARE NOT protected by the First Amendment . Their First Amendment right is negated by their actions , according to the 9th Amendment .

Let's beat them at their own game . Leave your comments . Stars and flags don't keep a thread on the front page , additional posts do . Let's make others aware of this freedom of speech fallacy .
edit on 12-1-2011 by okbmd because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 12:59 PM
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Ok so Westboro has trolled you so badly, that now you wanna restrict free speech?

I think you have been manipulated through your emotions.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:00 PM
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constitution 1

westbro 0

good job breaking it down . I love how people run to the constituion for protection when its in self intrest . but when it comes down to the interest of the nation its just " a god damn piece of paper " a.k.a patriot act lool



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:02 PM
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Originally posted by muzzleflash
Ok so Westboro has trolled you so badly, that now you wanna restrict free speech?

I think you have been manipulated through your emotions.



Did you miss the memo troll ?

"
In conclusion , westboro Baptist Church has a right to freedom of speech UNTIL the exercise of that right disparages the rights of others "



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:06 PM
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You can't disparage someones rights by talking. Especially when no one listens to anything you say.

You do not have a right to shut someone else up.

You do have a right to IGNORE them though.

The only rights here in jeopardy are everyone's right to free speech and protest.

Just because you don't agree with them doesn't mean you can ban them.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:07 PM
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Originally posted by muzzleflash
Ok so Westboro has trolled you so badly, that now you wanna restrict free speech?

I think you have been manipulated through your emotions.


What he is saying is that you can't just say or do whatever if it infringes upon the rights of others. If they want to hold a rally or a protest they can. The problem is that by doing so at someone's funeral they are infringing on that families rights. Are you going to say that the family has no right to a peaceful ceremony for their 9 year old daughter?



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:10 PM
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Which amendment says that you have a protected right to have no protesters at a funeral?

I can however point to amendments that protect freedom of assembly.

You people just hate Westboro so much you will sink to any low to get them "punished" and "out of the way".

You will even sacrifice your own rights to get rid of them.

I just usually ignore/dont care what they do. Problem solved.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:10 PM
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Originally posted by muzzleflash
You can't disparage someones rights by talking.


Whether you like it or not, you can't actually say whatever you want. You can't threaten to kill someone. Why? Because it infringes upon their rights.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:11 PM
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I think you guys are missing the point......... Just because someone has the right to do something, doesn't mean it's ok to do something....

With greater freedoms comes greater responsibilities. Maybe our fore fathers thought that these rights would help people to become greater people and greater moral people and back then, they didn't have to worry about sick immoral people like the Westboro type.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:12 PM
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Originally posted by muzzleflash
Which amendment says that you have a protected right to have no protesters at a funeral?

I can however point to amendments that protect freedom of assembly.

You people just hate Westboro so much you will sink to any low to get them "punished" and "out of the way".

You will even sacrifice your own rights to get rid of them.

I just usually ignore/dont care what they do. Problem solved.


Maybe you should read the OP again. It says the states have rights that Congress doesn't. Which is what they put to use Arizona. They banned protests at funerals.

Are you really going to argue that someone has the right to protest a person's funeral? Why would they have the right to do that?



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:12 PM
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Originally posted by muzzleflash

I just usually ignore/dont care what they do. Problem solved.



It's the indifference of good men that has let this country go to crap.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:13 PM
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The truly immoral act here is using Westboro as leverage and justification for burning up Constitutionally protected rights to protest, assemble, and voice your opinion.

They just hate their opinion SO MUCH, that they are willing to pass laws to shut them up.

It's actually more twisted than anything Westboro has done so far.

So I consider Westboro the lesser threat, and these law-pushing freedom haters the biggest threat of all.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:15 PM
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Originally posted by 11PB11

Originally posted by muzzleflash

I just usually ignore/dont care what they do. Problem solved.



It's the indifference of good men that has let this country go to crap.


Right so let's be GOOD MEN and Burn the Constitution?

What the heck kind of double think is Westboro creating ???



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:19 PM
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reply to post by muzzleflash
 


Youre still missing the big picture here.... it's about the morality, not the constitution. This is a result of a society that has come to protesting funerals for their religious beliefs, and so many other sick immoral things. The problem is not the constitution, its the people, the society, the degradation of a country that used to be great. All others things are a result/reaction to sick people.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:20 PM
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reply to post by muzzleflash
 


What part of the 9th Amendment do you fail to understand ?

You can't hide behind the First Amendment , while disregarding the Ninth Amendment .

Their First Amendment right ends as soon as they violate the Ninth Amendment .

Period .



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:22 PM
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Morality? Not the Constitution?

Morality is something we all disagree on.

You think it's moral to suppress someone's rights because you DONT LIKE WHAT THEY SAY.

I think it's IMMORAL.

The Constitution is here to protect me and others, from the likes of you folks who want to change the rules so you don't get criticized anymore.

Thank God the Constitution protects me from this type of draconian tyranny.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:27 PM
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reply to post by muzzleflash
 


Your comments remind me of the liberals protesting a speech and making so much noise the speaker couldn't be heard..... then saying it's your right to protest but forgetting the fact that the person has a right to be heard. Liberals... "the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they are ignorant, but that they know so much that isn’t so."



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:28 PM
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Originally posted by okbmd
reply to post by muzzleflash
 


What part of the 9th Amendment do you fail to understand ?



The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.


The 9th Amendment clearly limits the government from denying the rights of Westboro...

Westboro has not harmed the liberty of a single person through their protests.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:31 PM
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reply to post by okbmd
 


I don't think they should be allowed, here is another group of people I don't understand, how can they be so cruel?

I hear they will not protest the little girls funeral now, instead they are going after the judge.



posted on Jan, 12 2011 @ 01:31 PM
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Originally posted by 11PB11
reply to post by muzzleflash
 


Your comments remind me of the liberals protesting a speech and making so much noise the speaker couldn't be heard..... then saying it's your right to protest but forgetting the fact that the person has a right to be heard. Liberals... "the trouble with our liberal friends is not that they are ignorant, but that they know so much that isn’t so."


Wrong.

Liberals are authoritarians. (I would call all anti-Westboro folks rabid anti-freedom liberals).

I am a Libertarian - Constitutionalist. So I am here to defend the right of Westboro to say their vile opinions until the death.

You will not shut them up by passing new laws to reverse the Constitution's protections.





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