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Protest law found unconstitutional by 8th Circuit.

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posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 02:46 AM
Score one for the good guys and this is the city I was with Occupy in almost a year ago. This one is personally meaningful for the pains and pain in the butt we all had to take for being carefully on the sidewalk and yadda yadda to avoid having everyone arrested at once. Down she goes and a bad law bites the dust!

Let me first share what started it though:

Headline: 9-11 Conspiracy Theorists Sue St. Louis - Tuesday, May 12, 2009

ST. LOUIS (CN) - Two 9-11 conspiracy theorists say St. Louis used an unconstitutional ordinance to violate their right to free speech. Donald Stahl and William Demsar say city police arrested them on Feb. 6 for carrying a banner that stated, "911 Was An Inside Job!"

In their federal claim, the men say it was a peaceful protest calling for a new, independent investigation into the federal government's involvement into the events of September 11, 2001. The men say they were not blocking pedestrian or vehicular traffic.

That's where it started back in 2009. Now, flash forward to the current day. We have an outcome and I can bring good news!

Protest Law Quashed in Conspiracy Monger's Friday, August 10, 2012

ST. LOUIS (CN) - The 8th Circuit struck down a St. Louis ban against demonstrations that impede street and pedestrian traffic, siding with a Sept. 11 conspiracy theorist who was arrested under the law.

After St. Louis police received a complaint about the "offensive sign," the men were arrested for violation of an ordinance that states: "No person shall sell or offer for sale any goods or merchandise, display any sign or pictures, participate in or conduct an exhibition or demonstration, talk, sing or play music on any street or abutting premises, or alley in consequences of which there is such a gathering of persons or stopping of vehicles as to impede either pedestrians or vehicular traffic."

A federal judge sided with the city at summary judgment, finding the ordinance to be a content-neutral time, place and manner restriction. But a three-judge panel of the 8th Circuit reversed Monday, finding the ordinance to be unconstitutional on its face because its does not provide fair notice of what conduct is prohibited and it excessively chills protected speech.

By the way, the court documents relating to each case are linked at the bottom of the source articles if anyone wants to view the details at that level.

The topic of the protest in this case is interesting, but certainly not the focus. I believe this represents a victory for the public and American citizens as a whole for the right to protest. Regardless of what that protest is about, whether it's Occupy STL or The Tea Party Movement. Either side are citizens and in this ruling the 8th Circuit did the people a great service. As a Circuit Court of Appeals their ruling is heard and felt over a wide area. I'm not sure how this case may directly effect other laws or situations, if at all, but the words and meaning of the ruling will certainly be noticed.

The 8th Circuit covers:

* Arkansas
* Iowa
* Minnesota
* Missouri
* Nebraska
* North Dakota
* South Dakota

It's getting fewer and farther between it seems for actually seeing the system work and help us rather than injure us. It does work occasionally though and it's a shame to let those events slip by unnoticed. So, I bring some up to the moment (in Business day terms, as it was Fridays Court schedule) delivery of this little Ray of Sunshine.

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 03:26 AM
Thanks for posting this. Too many times we miss the good news and only focus on the bad. Though understandable, it can be counterproductive to focus on the negative. Every now and then we need to see that others out there are fighting and everything may not be as bleak as it seems.

That being said, I wonder how this will play out. Will it be turned over by a higher court, ignored completely or will it hold. Should be interesting to watch none the less.
edit on 13-8-2012 by Forgoten_Whisper because: (no reason given)

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 04:03 AM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

I'm not sure how it works down there, but does this mean that other groups in other circuit court jurisdictions could sue other city's and/or states for similar laws based on precedent?
And if, why don't they do so, immediately?
Nothing brings a smile to my face quicker than some control freaks getting their comeuppance.
To bad your corrupt supreme court ruled that free speech zones are lawful.
Even someone from outside your country can see that as a swine state move if ever there was one...

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 06:46 AM
Rabbit, I know we have these laws here in VA and I guess we will have to test them too. Here in the Roanoke, VA area the city often takes over the city parks for local festivals and prohibits any kinds of protests on city grounds while the festival is underway.

I will have to look these up. I wonder what impact this might have on any state laws restricting free speech.

These kinds of "rights" is what I mean when I tell people that our right overlap and not just start where your end. The problem with many people is that they want the right but then want to deny other that right because they don't like what that person is saying.

I wonder if the new anti-protest law around "public officials" will hold water or if their can is full of free speech holes!
edit on 13-8-2012 by fnpmitchreturns because: too early too spell HA HA HA

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 08:13 AM
Wow another unlawful "law" stricken down. I try not to get too excited when it happens, there are thousands of other unlawful "laws" to go, and even more made all the time. When it does happen, I do feel like maybe not all hope is gone just yet. Keep baling out the water until the ship is sunk I guess

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 08:20 AM
really nice to hear good news for a change!

sometimes we win eh.

makes me wonder how those protest site's with fair, with a higher court?

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 01:58 PM
"When the ball goes flat, the DA has no toy to play with"

Mr. Alexander, Fresno County

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 02:16 PM
Wow, so I guess this means 9/11 really WAS an inside job!



/darn that felt good

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 03:00 PM
Should go VIRAL......good eye wrabbit

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 03:06 PM
As most know, I'm no fan of Occupy or anything like that.

That being said, I'm glad some courts still abide by the Constitution and it was a righteous win.

posted on Aug, 13 2012 @ 04:50 PM
the right to protest is a cornerstone of democracy and is written into the very fabric on which our government is based / end of discussion.

posted on Aug, 14 2012 @ 03:43 AM
clap clap clap

Thanks for posting this wrabbit

This has restored my hope and faith that the little guys can get justice

posted on Aug, 14 2012 @ 09:54 AM
free speech en America? this is good. It seems like we have small victories every once in a while. muy bien.

posted on Aug, 14 2012 @ 01:27 PM
The terrible part about all of this is that we have to have a court uphold a decision that should be granted without question by our constitution. I understand being happy because the ruling came through, but I still do not find solace in that fact.

In fact it is quite the opposite, I find it extremely disheartening to see a ruling like this because it goes to confirm everything about this country taking gigantic leaps backwards in regards to civil liberties.

posted on Aug, 14 2012 @ 02:36 PM
reply to post by cd123456

I'd certainly agree that it's a shame the things are happening which bring this case about in the first place. If our elected leadership were as clear and serious about values as some of the court decisions have been then the atmosphere to encourage the abuses wouldn't exist, IMO.

I do see this all as a good sign though because the Judicial Branch is exactly who the Founding Fathers intended to be the check and final balance when the Congress and White House inevitably tried pushing the limits beyond reasonable.

I don't always agree with the Courts but that's largely because the laws they are handed to Judge with are stupid on steroids in so many cases. Often enough to matter, it does seem the Courts are starting to assert their place in opposition of some of whats happening, IMO. At least in terms of the High Courts.

posted on Aug, 14 2012 @ 04:11 PM
reply to post by Wrabbit2000

I can see your point and agree with it completely. Now will this translate into more court rulings in other districts to bring this issue to light across the whole country? That I hope for, but sadly cannot see happening.

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