Thursday, March 3, 2011

SCOTUS Westboro "Church" Decision

The pace of the unraveling of the world is a bit unsettling.

The SCOTUS Westboro decision really took me by surprise. I really thought there was more sanity on the bench.

I was too disgusted to read the decision in any depth, but I did filter through enough of the maniacal to see Alito was the dissenter.

That's it?

We're down to one SCOTUS judge who hasn't been infected with the eclipse of reason?

I've seen the Westboro antichrists in action. They came to the Cathedral of the Holy Cross several years ago. They are the antithesis of everything that is Christ. On top of being malicious, they bring props that are crude, vulgar, pornographic.

With the malice they display for our soldiers and our country, I should have known better, but watching them proudly show their graphic pornography to children shocked me.

The right to peacefully lay to rest our dead in a religious ceremony is constitutional.

Rabid protesters interfering with the rite of Christian burial of a soldier who laid down their life for our country is an upheaval of our right to religious freedom, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

The decision is a looser.


Kelly said...

Just from my viewing of a news show about this, it seems like the Westboro folks (and probably their lawyer) know how to dance around the edges of the law. Remember when a group lined up in front of them to block them out from funeral -goers? And played music to drown them out? That's what I think needs to happen here. so they can be quite sure their actions aren't going to be tolerated by those of us that don't operate on political edges, but are trying to live true Christian lives.

Louise said...

On the other hand, In Pakistan, a Catholic government official was murdered because he spoke offensive words and everybody cheered and supported the murderous act, including all the government officials. That is the other extreme. Take you pick. Is limiting one worth the risk of inheriting the other?

The Westboro group is another beast (like Charlie Who?) that feeds on the attention paid to it by the media. That's why God made acts of reparation.

(I think only Alito dissented.)

breathnach said...


Alito was the sole dissenter- 8 to 1 in favor of an absolutist interpretation of the First Amendment.

The conservative majority, including the despised Catholics (Scalia,Roberts, Thomas and Kennedy), have bought into the idea that any limits to "speech" will be used to silence all speech.

This, I think is an absurd position, and has never been the "conservative" view of free speech.

These conservatives believe that they will be able to turn the tables and use this reasoning against the Left when they attempt to restrict speech based on their politically correct and multicultural models.

We will see if this "free speech" jurisprudence will be used to protect politically incorrect speech, such as Catholics and Bible Christians who oppose homosexual marriage etc.

I, for one, am skeptical.

Carol McKinley said...

I feel like it's important to take notice and talk about in the public square - because we all learn from each other.

For instance, what was I thinking posting anything like this without some kind of prayer of reparation that we can all say - or remind everyone to do their own? I'll never do THAT again. thanks to Veronica, Louise and others for pointing out that spiritual glitch.

Thanks breathnach - Louise for pointing out it was only Alito. I'll change up the post.

I thought about whether or not they were looking at it from the perspective of protecting our free speech.

The problem with this theory - at least to me - is that the beast in the White House is an anarchist, dictator and a tyrant.

Law and the three branches of government do not mean anything to him or his followers.

Carol McKinley said...

p.s. Maybe what we might want to do is challenge the buffer zones around abortion clinics based on this decision.

Phil Lawler has a great article up I'll link to later which is food for thought.

Louise said...

'that the beast in the White House is an anarchist, dictator and a tyrant.'

and he doesn't care what the Supreme Court says. Challenging the buffer zone around the abortion clinics might be a good strategy, but then how can a buffer zone be imposed on the Westboro group?

Carol McKinley said...

yeah - might want to go the other way with it -- and seek a buffer zone to protect grieving families from these animals.

We'll have to do some thinking on next steps!

Louise said...

"" and seek a buffer zone to protect grieving families from these animals. ""

In the state where this lawsuit took place, there is a buffer zone of 1000 feet and the Westboro group was behind it. On the way to and from the funeral, the family saw only the tops of placards and couldn't read what was on them. The family was not aware of what this group was protesting. They found out, only when they were watching the evening news. That is when they became angry and eventually decided to sue to save other families the pain of encountering them--except that they, themselves, had not actually encountered them. One might ask, how did the media know about their presence there? And knowing, why didn't they just ignore them? I still say that shunning would prevent a lot of this stuff.

Chesterton said something to the effect that when you buy a lot of land and, one day, you are out walking the boundaries and come upon a fence, do not take the fence down until you know why it was put up.

And, of course, there is the old saying, "what's good for the goose is good for the gander." Whenever you propose a solution, you must ask yourself whether that solution can be used against yourself and to what effect? Mr. Breathnach doesn't think that the limits to free speech will ever be imposed against the good guys. He may well be right--let's hope he is, but are we willing to take that chance when we have other solutions at our disposal such as the supernatural Gift of Fortitude, Guardian Angels, prayer, acts of reparation, Holy Water, and crowds of sympathizers who will stand between us and them?

Did you see the Pro-Life flash mob in Chicago the other day counter-demonstrating against a pro-abortion group? The pro-abort. group just stood there in stunned silence. Great fun.

breathnach said...


I questioned the conservatives on the Court, who seem to be moving towards absolute protection of all speech. I believe they see this as a way to insure that unpopular forms of speech, hopefully including Catholic and Christian speech involving life and family issues, will be protected.

I am skeptical. I could easily see future Courts upholding restricted speech laws like those that are now hindering pro-marriage and pro-life groups in Canada.

The original intent analysis gives protection to what the Founders believed was essential to a democracy: unhindered political speech. That does not guarantee that every forum is one where "political speech" will be always protected. An abortion clinic is a place of a demonic but public business, a funeral is a place of sacramental liturgy and private grieving. Political speech should be protected at the former but not at the latter.

Michael said...

I'm disgusted with this opinion.

By the Court's reasoning nothing can prevent the rabid anti-family and culture of death forces from continuous harassment of Catholics and Christians at their churches.

Last week in Chicago, militant homosexual forces, disrupted those attending Mass.

Are we to have buffer zones at all places of worship?

As to breathnach's point: Maryland is now considering a same sex "marriage" law that contains no protections for dissenting Catholics or Christians.

Future courts will likely balance free speech rights against "rights of abortion and homosexuality" and shut done any dissenting speech.

Carol McKinley said...

"An abortion clinic is a place of a demonic but public business, a funeral is a place of sacramental liturgy and private grieving. Political speech should be protected at the former but not at the latter."

These were my thoughts exactly!

We had some nutcase 'protesters' come into the Liturgy at the Cathedral too - so maybe that's why I'm so sensitive to it.

Nobody should have to tell their children, like I did - and others did, to hit the floor if they hear guns.