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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 01:55 PM
Original message
Quran Burning is not protected speech.
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 01:56 PM by Evasporque
So go ahead crazy pastor. Burn away but don't be surprised when you are arrested and then have to spend tens of thousands of dollars defending the hateful action. Below are some articles and references....seems people have forgotten about the 2003 SCOTUS ruling. The pastor has already said his intent is to intimidate Muslims.

http://writ.news.findlaw.com/commentary/20030417_chemerinsky.html

Thursday, Apr. 17, 2003

On April 7, in the case of Virginia v. Black, the Supreme Court held that cross-burning with intent to intimidate is not protected by the First Amendment. However, such intent cannot be inferred from the act of cross-burning itself; it must be separately proven.

The decision, though controversial, was clearly the right one. The Court's decision struck exactly the right balance in this difficult area. The First Amendment should not protect the right of people to intimidate or threaten others. But the government cannot eliminate any symbol, however offensive. Speech may be made illegal if it threatens, but not because it offends.


Florida Statute 806.13, Section 4(2)

# This statute pertains to criminal mischief. Section 4(2) describes penalties for defacing, injuring or damaging places of worship or religious articles that are housed within any place of worship. Such acts of vandalism, if committed willfully and maliciously, will be judged as felonies of the third degree.

Right now...the Quran documents if stored in a house of worship are housed there. They are a religious article under the definition of this law. Just because another faith's article is housed in another faiths location makes it no less a religious article.

Also at a Federal Level:

Wikipedia:

1964 Federal Civil Rights Law

The 1964 Federal Civil Rights Law, 18 U.S.C. 245(b)(2), permits federal prosecution of anyone who "willingly injures, intimidates or interferes with another person, or attempts to do so, by force because of the other person's race, color, religion or national origin" <1> because of the victim's attempt to engage in one of six types of federally protected activities, such as attending school, patronizing a public place/facility, applying for employment, acting as a juror in a state court or voting.

Persons violating the 1969 Federal Hate Crimes Law face a fine or imprisonment of up to one year, or both. If bodily injury results or if such acts of intimidation involve the use of firearms, explosives or fire, individuals can receive prison terms of up to 10 years, while crimes involving kidnapping, sexual assault, or murder can be punishable by life in prison or the death penalty.<1> U.S. Courts provide for criminal sanctions, but only victims of gender-motivated hate crimes can "seek compensatory and punitive damages as well as injunctive and declaratory relief".<2>

From Humanrightsfirst.org

VI. The Framework of Law
A. Federal Hate Crime Provisions

The Criminal Code of the United States Federal Government treats bias-motivated crimes as specific offenses. Federal hate crimes legislation, 18 USC 245, was first adopted in 1968 and allows federal authorities to investigate and punish crimes motivated by bias towards a persons race, religion, or national origin and because of a persons participation in one of six federally protected activities.

The dual requirement of the federal statute, which obliges federal prosecutors to demonstrate that a hate crime was committed both because of bias and because of the victims participation in a federally protected activity, limits the scope for federal prosecutions of hate crimes. Indeed, most hate crime prosecutions are undertaken under state laws. In more than one instance though, federal prosecutors have been unable to charge bias crime suspects at the federal level because of this statutory requirement. In other cases, prosecutions on federal charges failed because of the double requirements that crimes were both motivated by bias and intended to obstruct the victims exercise of federally protected activities.

Other federal laws concerning hate crimes include the Church Arson Prevention Act of 1996, which prohibits intentional desecration or damage to religious property as well as interference with the enjoyment of any persons exercise of religious beliefs, and the Fair Housing Act of 1968, which prohibits housing-related violence on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status, or national origin, including such crimes as cross burnings, arson, fire bombings, vandalism to property, written and oral threats, and assaults on persons attempting to exercise their fair housing rights.



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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 01:57 PM
Response to Original message
1. At worst he'll be in violation of a burn ban, and pay a minor fine.
Hate speech is protected speech, and this is not a threat to anybody.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 01:59 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. If one person of Muslim faith is present then it is intimidation...
and or it is broadcast far and wide. The pastor has already said IT IS about intimidation of Fundementalist Muslims..

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CBGLuthier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:06 PM
Response to Reply #3
5. Nope. You are wrong about this.
If the klan has a rally and on their property lights a cross, that IS protected. If they go to some guys house and burn a cross, that IS NOT protected.

Just because some muslim shows up on their property, that alone does not change the intent of their act.

Your other examples cite laws. NO law may over ride the first amendment. This is a protest and is protected speech.

If I have the right to burn a flag, and despite your arguments, yes I do have that right, then they have the right to burn a holy book. It would be hypocritical to claim otherwise.



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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:13 PM
Response to Reply #5
12. What about intent...what is the churches intent?
To dispose of some old religious objects? Or to INTIMIDATE people who have a different religion.

I'll say it now...I don;t care what you burn as long as the intent is not malicious as this is.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:18 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. There's a difference between saying "I hate you and everything you stand for."
and a specific threat of "I am going to kill you."

And furthermore, if I had to choose, I'd rather watch some nazi burning a Koran than watch some nazi pissing on the Constitution.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:23 PM
Response to Reply #14
21. I see where you are dragging this.
I think you just called me a nazi in a veiled threat manner.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:25 PM
Response to Reply #21
23. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #23
25. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:06 PM
Response to Reply #3
6. Nope.
OP, your supreme court case protected the right for the defendents to burn crosses. It ruled the anti-cross burning law unconstitutional.
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woo me with science Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:08 PM
Response to Reply #3
7. Nonsense. nt
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:05 PM
Response to Reply #3
69. Its not for intimidation, its for incitement, and they may well be successful
Also your interpretation of the SCOTUS decision would lead to the rule of the most easily offended, a problem I have already seen in schools.
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rpannier Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:41 PM
Response to Reply #3
78. Disagree
Everyone knows they're going to burn the Qurans

It's going to be hard to say you feel intimidated when you chose to show up and be an observer
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #1
9. Your denial that this is not a threat is, to put it mildly,
just plain ignorant.

One the most difficult things to prove in a civil suit, is intent. But since this moron has already stated his intent, this should be an easy case.

Civil rights groups should file a lawsuit against him now and let the courts work it out.

Muslims as a group have been scape-goated by the Government of the U.S. as a means to get support for their illegal wars. And then persecuted and killed and tortured as troops were taught to 'treat them like dogs' and ethnic slurs became common in both the military and on the right in this country. It became okay to call Muslim Americans such vile names as 'ragheads' even in the media. No other group has been subjected to such prejudice in recent times without consequences.

This fool is merely fall-out from that scape-goating. Maybe a class-action suit by Muslims against the Government would be a good start to ending the despicable display of hatred that appears to be spreading throughout the country.

Muslims are protected under the Constitution just like everyone else, and when any group is singled out and targeted, their rights are violated.

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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:12 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. Wanting it to be a threat does not make it so.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:20 PM
Response to Reply #11
17. how does the injured party know that it is not harming them?
When the very act with the intent has harmed them...and indicated to them that they and their religion are not welcome in Florida.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:22 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. lol, wut?
If the injured party doesn't know that it's harmed them, then it probably hasn't harmed them.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:32 PM
Response to Reply #19
27. Ask a Muslim person if they are intimdated by this act...
then let me know.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:36 PM
Response to Reply #27
28. No.
Whether or not they choose to feel "intimidated" is irrelevant.

There is no specific threat here.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:15 PM
Response to Reply #28
87. Not irrelevant at all according to the courts. Your ignorance is showing
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 07:17 PM by sabrina 1
along with your prejudices. Feelings of fear, even if they are just Muslims :eyes: are very relevant to a court case.

When Are Threats Protected Speech?

Virginia v. Black (2003) is perhaps the most relevant Supreme Court case to address the question of whether a targeted threat made over the Internet or radio is protected speech. Black held that a statement is not a criminally punishable threat unless it was made "with the intent of placing the victim in fear of bodily harm or death." The Court's focus was not on the possibility that the threat would actually be carried out, but on whether the target of the threat would be reasonably put in fear of attack.


I'm glad you seem to have taken a break from this thread as your ignorance of the law and the Constitution was embarrassing to watch. Not to mention the lack of interest in even trying to find some way to prevent this bigoted act from taking place.

The fact that now both the AG and a U.S. General have informed this idiot that his actions may result in violence, leaves him without the defense that the really didn't think they would. Speech that incites violence has been ruled as not being protected before, and I hope that this will make it to the courts and this guy will have to give up all that ill-gotten money he has been making and maybe go to building a Mosque somewhere in his neighborhood. That would be justice in action.

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PavePusher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:23 AM
Response to Reply #87
122. Please state what the threat is...
either quoted or implied.

'Cause I'm not seeing it.
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Rebubula Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:46 PM
Response to Reply #28
140. Wow..
..it is an amazing day when you are the seemingly lone voice of reason and law.

Thanks HFPS - I am just going to let you say what I could not as well.
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AngryAmish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:07 PM
Response to Reply #27
56. I have.
They said, and I quote "Fuck that asshole." They didn't feel very intimidated.
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Phil The Cat Donating Member (211 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:53 AM
Response to Reply #27
128. They are OFFENDED, even OUTRAGED by this
Not intimidated! Big difference!

Burning a privately owned Koran on their own private property does not represent a direct threat, or even an implied one!

What you want to see here, by legally stifling his free speech, regardless of how abhorrent, would open a big huge slimy stinky can of worms that NONE of us want to see opened!

Such a precedent could come back to bite A LOT of progressives!
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:55 PM
Response to Reply #11
31. You don't get to decide what is a threat or is not.
Muslims view this as a threat in a country that has already harmed so many of them. And that is all that matters.

It's their call, disappointing for you though it may be.

All speech is not free, in fact it can be very expensive. That is why we have civil laws and ask anyone who has lost a libel suit how free their speech was. There IS such a thing as common sense, apparently not only lacking on the right in this country, assuming those on the 'left' really are 'left'.
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HiFructosePronSyrup Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #31
48. "It's their call" No, it's not.
It's not subjective. This isn't a matter of opinion. Burning a Koran is not a threat.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:59 PM
Response to Reply #48
54. No it's not subjective, certainly not to your opinion.
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 04:03 PM by sabrina 1
The subject of a threat makes the call and the authorities respond, not to bystanders with a vested interest in protecting the perpetrator, to the person making the claim.

I hope we will see this resolved in the courts. It wouldn't be the first time that the Constitution has been misinterpreted and needed clarification.

In the end this guy may unintentionally be responsible for restoring the rights of Muslims to live and practice their religion in the U.S. without harrassment. I think I like that idea.

That would be a wonderful thing, to have to THANK him for leading the way to finally get something done about the bigotry that has pervaded this country over the past several years.

I'd love to see his bigoted, ugly face when the tables are turned and he becomes the symbol of Muslim's rights being restored in this country. :rofl:
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Saboburns Donating Member (690 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:50 PM
Response to Reply #9
50. er, um
I would hope that Civil Right's groups would DEFEND this groups Constitutional Right to burn a book.
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Codeine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:54 PM
Response to Reply #50
51. Welcome to Bizarro DU!
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SidDithers Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #51
55. Some days you just have to shake your head...


Sid
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nadinbrzezinski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 01:58 PM
Response to Original message
2. The intent is to stop them
I have wondered why we haven't gotten a very rare injunction yet.
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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #2
60. There is no basis for an injunction, which is why there is none.
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 04:36 PM by TexasObserver
If they have a permit to burn in the jurisdiction, or they don't need a permit to burn in the location where the burn it planned, they're fine under the law.

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Codeine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:05 PM
Response to Original message
4. Their church property and their Qurans.
Yes it is protected speech. That so many on DU are so eager to remove the right of expression from others just because that expression is stupid, ugly, or bigoted does not bode well for our "progressive" future.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #4
10. The burning specific of the object is not against the law...
In conjunction with the intent it is.
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Codeine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:12 PM
Response to Reply #10
42. Your misinterpretation of these cases is breathtaking.
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 03:12 PM by Codeine
It's almost impressive in its own way.
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msanthrope Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:58 PM
Response to Reply #42
52. You nailed it. n/t
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COLGATE4 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:56 AM
Response to Reply #10
118. No, it's not. Your legal analysis is incorrect.
We lawyers have a saying about arguing legal issues with a non-lawyer: It's like trying to teach a pig to sing - it doesn't get you anywhere and just irritates the pig".
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outerSanctum Donating Member (154 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:20 PM
Response to Reply #4
45. I was going to respond to the OP
But I could not sum it up any better than you had.

How is it even possible that so many here on DU are so eager to jump on the bandwagon of the day and yank our basic freedoms?!
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slackmaster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:09 PM
Response to Original message
8. Not protected per se, but in absence of a law specifically banning burning them
It's legal to burn them. An activity has to be a crime before it can be called a hate crime.
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TheKentuckian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:16 PM
Response to Original message
13. I think you are misinterpreting your research due to personal distaste
These people are fools and very likely huge bigots that may well create a helluva backlash but this is free expression.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:18 PM
Response to Reply #13
15. I think it goes a little deeper...now that the Administraion has chimed in on this...
They issued a sort of warning...and it can still be brought into the legal arena...there is enough gray area and on this issue.
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Cid_B Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:22 PM
Response to Reply #15
18. If we can take Fred f'ing Phelps...
... we can take this guy's free speech as well.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:22 PM
Response to Reply #15
73. Shame on them for doing it vaguely...they should have taken it to court or done nothing
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WinkyDink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:20 PM
Response to Original message
16. Will not fly.
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Saboburns Donating Member (690 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:23 PM
Response to Original message
20. They indeed DO have the Right to burn Qurans
And I will fight like hell to protect their right to do so.

You must never let something as trivial as emotions cloud your thinking in a Civil Rights matter.
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Toucano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:07 PM
Response to Reply #20
39. Do you believe all speech is constitutionally protected?
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:57 PM
Response to Reply #20
63. Then you disagree with the civil laws against libel, slander and
defamation? Because it is usually anger that initiate such lawsuits, anger at being wrongfully portrayed eg. Do you oppose those civil laws? Are they trivial when someone's reputation is smeared by speech? Or are they a protection against harm being done to an individual by the use of speech?
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tritsofme Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:47 PM
Response to Reply #63
79. Non sequitur.
Slander and libel have very specific definitions that are not related at all related to the clearly constitutionally protected action of burning a Koran.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:51 AM
Response to Reply #79
108. You need to look up the other forms of speech that are not
protected. 'Fighting words' eg. And this case definitely, in the current atmosphere, could easily be defined as 'fighting words'. This idiot has been told that his actions may result in violence. So he has no excuse, no way to claim he did not intend to cause violence.

It is not a 'non sequitur' to draw attention to the fact that there are actually several forms of speech that are not protected.
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COLGATE4 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:59 AM
Response to Reply #108
119. You don't understand the law. Just trying to cite to some cases
you've seen somewhere doesn't make a legal argument. The 'fighting words doctrine', for example, has absolutely no application here. There is no direct and immediate incitation to violence.
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Brickbat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:24 PM
Response to Original message
22. I do not think these laws and statutes mean what you think they mean.
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Common Sense Party Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #22
36. +1,000,000 for the win
Incontheivable!
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Brickbat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:09 PM
Response to Reply #36
40. Stop it now, I mean it!
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Common Sense Party Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:11 PM
Response to Reply #40
41. Anybody want a peanut?
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Obamanaut Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:25 PM
Response to Original message
24. Re the Fla statute - if these books are in someone's garage, or delivered
directly from a bookstore, they are not housed in a place of worship.

Re the last para of OP - the books are not being confiscated from someone who is currently using them, so no one is being deprived or interfered with.
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Dappleganger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:27 PM
Response to Original message
26. The only law he'll be breaking is a denied burn permit.
Otherwise, it's protected.

BTW, this guy's a sham: http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,,5985291,00.html
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proteus_lives Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:41 PM
Response to Original message
29. Sorry, you're wrong.
It's disgusting but protected.

And it should be.
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Toucano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #29
37. You are mistaken.
The case law is cited in the OP.

All you've given is your opinion that it is protected and "should be".

I would be interested to know if you can provide support for both of your claims.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:51 AM
Response to Reply #37
127. The case law cited is not applicable
The SPLC piece is advocacy not a balanced treatment of the issues.
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CPMaz Donating Member (246 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:43 PM
Response to Original message
30. The First Amendment protects speech that is merely obnoxious
and this is no worse than if someone burns a flag that they legally own.

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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:04 PM
Response to Reply #30
35. The First Amendment does not protect speech that threatens
harm, especially based on religion or ethnicity. What he is doing is exactly the opposite of what the First Amendment intended.

Muslims believe this is a threat to them, many are afraid to leave their homes. That's what matters.

Same as if your neighbor incites violence against you, he will be arrested. It's a shame to so abuse the First Amendment this way, but I hope this will be dealt with in the courts. It's past time to bring some common sense to this country. People are very likely to get hurt, even killed over this. I doubt very much that was the intention of the first amendment.

I remember not so long ago when cops could not arrest abusive husbands reported for verbally assaulting and threatening their wives. After many women died, that law too changed. Too bad people have to die before people get some common sense. This is a threat, it is not a protest. Those most affected determine whether it is a threat or not.
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Common Sense Party Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:06 PM
Response to Reply #35
38. "many are afraid to leave their homes."
You have some proof of this? That MANY Muslims are afraid to go outside because a nutbag preacher might burn a book in Florida?
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:48 PM
Response to Reply #38
49. It's really sad that you reduce their fears to being about this
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 03:51 PM by sabrina 1
one nutcase. If that is all it was about, no one would even be talking about him. But that's not all he is, he is the natural result of a sustained campaign against Muslims by the U.S. Government and the media. Taken to the extreme when they killed hundreds of thousands of Muslim and tortured others, detaining thousands of innocent Muslims without charge and withou too much protest from the American people. Because when you demonize a group of people so successfully, it tends to diminish any support for them. As history has demonstrated over and over again.

That is the state of affairs in this country towards Muslims today. And yes, many are fearful, many have been attacked since the propaganda began. And it is shameful, at least we thought so when Bush was president.

So this is not just one nutcase preacher. He is the natural vile result of U.S. policies that have labeled all Muslims as suspected terrorists.

I have some Muslim friends and I can assure you they are terrified every time something like this happens.

But that is anecdotal, here is a news report:

Koran-burning planned for 9-11 has Muslim community on edge

GAINESVILLE, Fla. Before she left her Miami home to return to the University of Florida this fall, Wajiha Akhtars parents gave her some unusual advice: Stay indoors as much as possible and, whatever happens, dont go near the Koran burners.

I was fearful, says Akhtar, 24, a graduate student in epidemiology who says she never had any concerns as a Muslim here until recently. Will we get singled out?

Far from ground zero, where debate over a proposed Islamic center is still roiling, a Gainesville church has aroused anger and tension among Floridas growing Muslim community and caught the worlds attention from international headlines to rallies in Indonesia and India because of its pistol-toting pastors plan to ignite a bonfire of Korans on 9-11 to protest what he calls a religion of the devil.

Fearing violence, some Muslims are leaving town on the Sept. 11 weekend to avoid problems


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Common Sense Party Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:58 PM
Response to Reply #49
53. "many are fearful, many have been attacked"
How many?
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:18 PM
Response to Reply #53
58. One is all it would take.
I see you're not really interested in facts, didn't bother to read the information you demanded, did you?

I didn't expect you would. Being accustomed to that tactic, I always supply something to back up my claims. And without fail, the goal posts move immediately after the first tactic, 'I demand proof' is demolished.

Thanks, I always give people the benefit of the doubt even when I'm skeptical of motives. It is no loss to me, as others get to read also. But now I know for sure you are nor arguing in good faith. But that is your problem, not mine.

Only one victim is necessary for a case to go forward, making your latest demand of 'how many' ridiculous.

Here in the U.S. Muslims have been targeted with violence since the crusade against them began. Find the information yourself, I won't waste any more time doing research for you as you are clearly not interested in facts and apparently have your mind made up.

But just a reminder of the crime that started all of this and as everyone knows the U.S. government slaughtered over one million Muslims. So it's no wonder we see the haters exploiting our laws, as our government did, to continue the scape-goating.
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Common Sense Party Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:03 PM
Response to Reply #58
68. I'm interested in facts, yes. Not feelings and anecdotes.
Sorry if that offends you.

And whether you like it or not, one guy burning books in Florida is hardly a threat against ALL Muslims, EVERYWHERE.

It simply isn't.
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Saboburns Donating Member (690 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:30 PM
Response to Reply #35
47. No one here is 'abusing' the First Amendment
Please.

This is a perfect example of Protected Speech. Just because you don't like what they say, you are trying to stretch things, cloudy the waters.

And you need not do so. I will gladly stand up for their Constitutional Right to burn a Quran.

My personal beliefs upon the matter mean nothing.

I would hope that you might join in and fight to keep our Civil Rights intact.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:51 PM
Response to Reply #47
62. Personal beliefs are what gave us the Constitution.
It is not a static document. It was not intended to be. It is a fluid document which is what made is so brilliant. And throughout its history adjustments have been made as they became necessary.

I think it is fair to say that the personal beliefs of those who wrote the Constitution did not include using it as a weapon against American citizens' rights to practice their religion in peace.

When the personal beliefs of a majority of the people lead to a decision that once again, clarification of the intent of the document are necessary, that will happen. This may not be the incident that leads to that clarification, but the more it is abused, the more likely that is to happen.

So, personal beliefs do matter. To completely subjugate one's principles to a document that even the FF's acknowledged was not perfect, is wrong especially if by doing so, it leads to harm.
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WinkyDink Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:19 PM
Response to Reply #35
88. You are being hyperbolic. This is just some dude in a rinky-dink place. Should not even be a story.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:03 AM
Response to Reply #88
109. No, it shouldn't be a story. But since he fully intended to disturb
the peace, HE made sure it was a story. Now if there is violence, he will be responsible as he has been warned that there may be. When you are told by so many people, including the AG and a U.S. General that what you are planning to do may be dangerous, you will have no excuse if you go ahead and do it, should your actions cause harm to anyone.
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Phil The Cat Donating Member (211 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:05 PM
Response to Reply #35
130. Should Muhammed carttons be illegal too?
Some Muslims carried out violence because of them as well!

Sir Ahmed Salman Rushdie and the Satanic Verses - perhaps that should have been banned and Mr Rushdie imprisoned because his book caused outrage and violence!

Theo Van Gogh...we can go on and on! HOW FAR do we have to go to "not offend", to "not incite"?
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:13 PM
Response to Reply #130
150. There is no right not to be offended in the US
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alc Donating Member (649 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 02:56 PM
Response to Original message
32. I think they're idiots
but I hope they have the right to burn books they own on their property.

I think the 1st amendment should be interpreted VERY liberally. Speech should be limited by social norms. Attempts at speech like this should be limited by everyone else making a big deal of how stupid it is so that it becomes not socially acceptable while it is still legal. And people who ignore socially accepted behavior should be treated like outcasts but not criminals.

One of the problems with too many laws is that we stop focusing on what is socially acceptable and instead depend on the government to solve every disagreement. We'd be much better off it if just wasn't acceptable for a CEO to be a greedy jerk, than by trying to pass laws making that a crime. They will find a way to get around the laws as will anyone who wants to burn a book or put a cross in urine or do anything else that offends other people.
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Ruby the Liberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:02 PM
Response to Original message
33. I'm not buying that this is a legit application
Likely, the cross that was burned was on the property of the person aggrieved or public property/grounds.

This 'pastor' in Florida is burning his own possessions on his own (private) property.
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Toucano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:03 PM
Response to Original message
34. Thank you for challenging the conventional wisdom and knee-jerk reactive thinking.
The Constitution DOES NOT protect ALL speech. Nor should it.

This is a dangerous error of thinking that crosses both sides of the political divide in the U.S.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:14 PM
Response to Reply #34
43. Thanks - just trying spur some thoughtful discussion...
A post above...about the the broad interpretation of the 1st amendment is important to a free a society...I agree but somewhere boundaries need to be set. In my mind the ruling on cross burning should indicate that burning a religious symbol with it being broadcast so all can see it is the same as burning it the front yard of someones home.

Houses of Worship are considered as part of the community social infrastructure and as such should be held to a standard of decorum that abides by the "public good". Our government grants these organizations tax exemptions because they are considered a benefit to the greater community.

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Toucano Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:16 PM
Response to Reply #43
57. Boundaries already exist, as you've cited.
But you wouldn't know that from polling Joe Public or (very sadly) even 90% of DU, apparently.


Two principles that have COMPLETELY been forgotten in contemporary America?

  1. Not all speech is constitutionally protected
  2. Not all speech that is protected is protected equally


I am completely at a loss as to how and when the public managed to abandon those principles, but I suspect it has something to do with morons in the media.


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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 05:08 PM
Response to Reply #57
65. Thank you. The sudden amnesia regarding our civil laws
that cover harmful speech is stunning. As you say, you would think that all speech is protected by the 1st Amendment and that no one ever won a case where speech was used to cause harm. I too would love to know when those principles were abandoned.

The Constitution was written for the Common Good. And whenever it was found to have been lacking in that regard, it was amended. Our civil laws probably suffice for now to deal with the abuse of the 1st Amendment. But when the abuse ends up causing real harm, such as violence against a specific group of people, I would think that a case will end up before the SC to resolve the issue, as it has in the past.
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tritsofme Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 10:26 PM
Response to Reply #34
101. I think the knee-jerk is in the other direction, in searching for creative ways to flout
the First Amendment, and ban speech that is found distasteful. The presumption should always be against speech being banned by the government.

No one argues that the Constitution allows for yelling fire in a crowded room, or slandering/libeling someone. However distasteful, burning a copy of the Koran is clearly protected speech, and looking for loopholes in the First Amendment to ban speech you don't approve of is the really scary thing.

The First Amendment has always been an impediment to authoritarians of all political stripes.
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woo me with science Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:28 PM
Response to Reply #101
134. "looking for loopholes in the 1st Amendment to ban speech you don't approve of is the really scary
thing."

This garbage on DU is really sickening.

+100000000

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Codeine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #101
161. Excellently said. nt
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deaniac21 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:18 PM
Response to Original message
44. stretch
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CanonRay Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 03:22 PM
Response to Original message
46. If these fools go through with this
it's going to piss off the moderate independent voters and give them an eyefull of just how crazy these wingnuts are. Good for holding the house and senate. Bad for the troops, though.
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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:29 PM
Response to Original message
59. Yes, it is protected speech.
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 04:33 PM by TexasObserver
Nothing you cite is controlling of this planned Koran burning.

If it is stopped, it will be for the failure to have a proper permit to burn paper, any paper.
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BlueCheese Donating Member (897 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 04:31 PM
Response to Original message
61. I'd be pretty upset...
... if this were not protected speech. Repugnant expression is still expression, and exactly the kind of expression that is meant to be protected. After all, nobody needs to protect popular expression.

I would also hope that no government tries to punish this group using a side channel, such as selective enforcement of laws that are usually not enforced.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 05:29 PM
Response to Reply #61
67. Not all speech is protected. It's disturbing to see that so many
here believe that it is. I do not know yet, whether this is, but a lawsuit would probably help to decide.

See my post #66 below for what is NOT protected speech. Since this action has the potential to incite violence, it may not be protected. I am sure lawyers are poring over cases right now to see whether or not it is.

Several rulings over the past few years are stated clearly in some cases that, eg, threatening speech is not protected. Since this moron has stated openly that he is doing to intimidate Muslims and since that could lead to violence either against them, or by them, this may very well already have a precedent in the law.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:20 PM
Response to Reply #67
72. If there was a shred of opportunity to stop this in the courts, someone would have tried by now
Its clearly provocative but protected
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:50 PM
Response to Reply #72
81. This is the first instance of this being done so publicly. That is
the main reason why it has not ended up in the courts yet. It most likely will if it continues to happen. Or if a person of standing decides to take it to court, and/or if there is violence against anyone on either side.

And if it did, it would not change anything much regarding the general rules on freedom of speech. But if this case was ruled as not protected, this particular case, it would mean that others planning to engage in the same behavior would have an idea of what might happen to them and take the necessary steps not to make any of the mistakes made in this case.

If he can prove he did not intend to cause violence, he will win. But that will be very difficult now that both the AG and a U.S. General have stated that they fear it could, BEFORE he does it. That may be why they made those statements, who knows? But they would be powerful evidence that he had knowledge that his hateful actions could cause harm.

I could see him losing this case the same way the Abortion case was resolved.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:58 PM
Response to Reply #81
83. Harm in which jurisdiction?
I can see no actionable harm coming out of this in the US. I can easily seem violence coming from this in other countries.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:43 PM
Response to Reply #83
90. You are being willfully blind. Harm has come to Muslims
in this country. Harm has been done to them by the U.S. government by the killing of more than a million of them when they had not done anything to this country.

Not to mention the attacks on them here. I will not do your homework for you, I have found that trying to reason with people who are biased is a lost cause. Your assumption that it is Muslims alone who will react violently, not anyone in the U.S. who would never, ever harm anyone, is laughable. When Muslims catch up to the U.S. on the number of bodies they can produce, then you might have a point.

WE HAVE KILLED over one million Muslims. Has this fact escaped you? Or do you think being killed by Americans is less of a crime than being killed by a Muslim?

As for what you can see regarding a court case, your opinion couldn't be less relevant or less informed.

The harm doesn't have to happen, as was already pointed out to you. Muslims simply have to have a 'reasonable fear' that it could. And based on our slaughter of them and the propaganda against them here, they certainly do have a reasonable fear of violence even without this incitement.

Once again just for you, a ruling in a U.S. court that doesn't 'see' things the way you do.

When Are Threats Protected Speech?

Virginia v. Black (2003) is perhaps the most relevant Supreme Court case to address the question of whether a targeted threat made over the Internet or radio is protected speech. Black held that a statement is not a criminally punishable threat unless it was made "with the intent of placing the victim in fear of bodily harm or death." The Court's focus was not on the possibility that the threat would actually be carried out, but on whether the target of the threat would be reasonably put in fear of attack.


And no other group in this country today has more of a reason to fear violence from Americans than Muslims. Torture, wholesale killing of their people. Gee, why would they fear us?

Clearly you have been influenced by the propaganda from the Bush years. WE are far more of threat to THEM than they could ever dream of being to us. And I really did naively think that at least Democrats fully understood that. How sad to see that I was wrong.




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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 08:19 PM
Response to Reply #90
92. Again, if your legal theory had value, it would have been in court by now
The argument of causing fear has a much higher burden than you seem to understand. Talk with knowledgeable lawyers or law professors. I did the latter over the last few days and asked about the same decisions you are so resolutely quoting (your position if far from unique or novel). Their opinions looks a lot like mine. There is no substantive case to be had in a US court over this.

Your descent into WE/THEM is telling as well. You are attempting to escalate the actions of less than 100 nut cases, and equate it to impact of an international war. That just does not hold up to rational scrutiny. By your logic if some one wore a t-shirt with a slogan and someone claimed it made them fearful, it should be treated as a crime. Its an extreme position that I have seen right wingers use in schools, and am surprised to see a progressive/liberal try to use it. It clearly does not pass legal nor rational scrutiny.

The vast majority of progressives understand that we need to allow the offensive and stupid. That is not buying into Bush propaganda, it is standing behind principle and the law, even if we think what is being said and done is stupid at best.

What you fail to understand is that this event is provocative not in terms of causing fear, but because it is an intentional sacrilege against muslim beliefs. It is being done to provoke a violent reaction, a reaction that will not come in the US, but internationally. It is intentionally trying to do what a book by a British author and later some cartoons did. I, like many, fear they will be successful.
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BlueCheese Donating Member (897 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:25 PM
Response to Reply #67
74. No, not all speech is protected.
But the very large majority of it is, and I think this qualifies.

I don't think anyone really thinks burning Qurans is a good idea. I find it personally repulsive myself. But given what I've heard about it, this should be protected. I'd be more afraid of a society in which this was illegal than one in which it is legal.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:57 PM
Response to Reply #74
82. There is no chance it will ever be illegal, nor should it be.
If you read throught the cases where speech was ruled not to be protected, the decisions were narrowly confined to individual cases. While they set precedents in some cases, each case will be judged on its own merits and will not in any way change the 1st Amendment just as none of the others have.

But people are always going to test the limits of the law and that is why the civil courts are the best recourse for this kind of thing. If someone is harmed as a result of his actions, then I can see this ending up in court. All it needs is someone who has standing to bring the case. Right now that could be an individual Muslim American who believes this is a threat to their safety and freedom to practice their religion in peace, or if there is violence, the family or individuals who are the victims.

And even if this moron lost his case, it would have no more effect on the right to free speech than the rulings on Abortion cases have had. You cannot incite violence the courts have said, but they need to know that was the known result of the actions. In his case, now that both the AG and a General have expressed fear that it could, he has no excuse that he 'never intended harm'.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 05:06 PM
Response to Original message
64. I wonder if it'd be protected speech if these people advocated
Killing Muslims. I'd hope we'd draw the line at that.

I honestly don't think these idiots burning the Quaran draw the line at this...they aren't going to stop at this.

I'm not advocating govt. stopping this I just know the people doing have no clue or maybe they do know, that this act will encourage nutcases to take it further and commit hate crimes.

Does anyone really think these people are the typical non-violent protesters....
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 05:23 PM
Response to Reply #64
66. No, it is not always protected, although court rulings
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 05:24 PM by sabrina 1
are generally made on individual cases. For example, there have been many rulings lately against people online who have issued threats against others, based on each case.

When Are Threats Protected Speech?

The First Amendment to the Constitution declares that "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech." But not all speech is protected by the Constitution. Exceptions exist for speech that is obscene, that presents a clear and present danger, for "fighting words," or for speech intended to incite "imminent lawless action."

Another kind of speech that is not protected is a "true threat" something that a reasonable listener would understand as an actual threat of violence.

......

Virginia v. Black (2003) is perhaps the most relevant Supreme Court case to address the question of whether a targeted threat made over the Internet or radio is protected speech. Black held that a statement is not a criminally punishable threat unless it was made "with the intent of placing the victim in fear of bodily harm or death." The Court's focus was not on the possibility that the threat would actually be carried out, but on whether the target of the threat would be reasonably put in fear of attack.

A case from the Ninth Circuit makes it clear that there are limits to the constitutional protection of Internet-based speech that calls for others to commit acts of violence. Planned Parenthood of Columbia/Willamette, Inc. v. American Coalition of Life Activists (2002) involved two types of threats by a radical anti-abortion group. First, the defendants had distributed "Wanted"-style posters with abortion doctors' names on them (there has been a pattern of such posters being distributed before the murder of several abortion providers). Second, the defendants created a "Nuremberg Files" website, which collected personal information about abortion providers, made that information publicly available, grayed the names of providers who had been injured, and struck out the names of providers who had been killed. The website did not explicitly threaten the doctors, but clearly encouraged and celebrated their deaths.

In a 6-to-5 decision by the entire ("en banc") Court of Appeals that was denied review by the Supreme Court, the court found that the "wanted posters," along with the personal information about clinic workers that was posted to the website, were "true threats" that were not protected by the First Amendment. The threatening nature of the posters "was reinforced by the scorecard in The Nuremberg Files." The effect of the Planned Parenthood ruling was to prohibit the publication of personal information about particular persons "with the specific intent to threaten them."


I love the absolutists here who think that all speech is protected and are 'willing to die to protect that right'. They need to learn a little more about our civil laws to find out that sometimes speech rather than being 'free' can be very expensive.








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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:15 PM
Response to Reply #66
71. The analogy to flag burning is going to be hard to get past
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:39 PM
Response to Reply #71
77. Not in the least. The 1st Amendment was written with
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 06:40 PM by sabrina 1
political speech in mind. The freedom to let the government know the opinions of citizens without fear of retaliation by the government. It is not singling out any particular group, it is directed at the government.

The flag is a political symbol of THIS government and while people may be offended by it being desecrated, it is a perfect example of what is protected by the 1st Amendment.

Burning a religious symbol with the intention of targeting a particular group and possibly inciting violence against them BECAUSE of their beliefs, is entirely different. I see no relationship at all. In fact if anything, the 1st Amendment is being violated by this action as it threatens the right of a religious group to believe what they believe in peace.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #77
80. Not at all
There is no realistic expectation of violence against muslims coming from this stupidity. There is a realistic expectation of violence by muslims not in the US due to it.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:06 PM
Response to Reply #80
84. Again, here you are attempting to speak for Muslims. If they
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 07:08 PM by sabrina 1
believe they are threatened, the courts have recognized that fear as a legitimate cause of action.

Virginia v. Black (2003) is perhaps the most relevant Supreme Court case to address the question of whether a targeted threat made over the Internet or radio is protected speech. Black held that a statement is not a criminally punishable threat unless it was made "with the intent of placing the victim in fear of bodily harm or death." The Court's focus was not on the possibility that the threat would actually be carried out, but on whether the target of the threat would be reasonably put in fear of attack.


And since we know that Muslims are leaving town in fear of what might happen, we know that they have been 'reasonably put in fear of attack'.

We also have the burning of the Mosque in Tennessee recently and other instances of harrassment and threats against Mosques.

Your prejudices are showing sadly, you jump to the prejudiced condlusion that only Muslims are capable of violence. Despite the fact the U.S. has killed over one million of them it still hasn't sunk in just how threatened Muslims feel by this country's bigotry towards them.

Now I completely understand where you are coming from and it makes me very sad to see it on a progressive board.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 09:50 PM
Response to Reply #84
98. You need to completely read and understand your citation, since you misapplication is massive
SCOTUS in the case in question overturned the law banning cross burning. They also ruled that since cross burning was historically a sign of imminent violence and that a state could pass a law banning cross burning with the intent to "inspire fear of bodily harm." If that were to happen, the state has to prove intent. Since there is no law banning Koran burning, its is not a crime and your citation is not applicable. Talk to some legal pros about it, you are dead wrong in your interpretation.

Yes there has been harassment and violence against muslims and their buildings in the US. Every civilized person should deplore it. I do not disagree that many muslims feel threatened by the US. Its just not relevant to the legality of what the less than 100 nut jobs are planning over the weekend.

To state that muslims in foreign nations have in recent history reacted violently to what they consider sacrileges happening western nations is a fact. Do "The Satanic Verses" and the Danish cartoons ring a bell? Its also the reason that many members of the current administration, General Petraeus, and even Sarah Palin have called for these nut cases not to go forward with their stupid plans. That is not the same as claiming that only Muslims are capable of violence.

You clearly have no idea where I, and for that matter, and most of the members of DU are coming from on this. We all deplore the actions (at minimum) but believe they have the right to do it under current law. That is far from prejudice...its support for the civil liberties all of us should hold dear and you seem willing to discard.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:40 AM
Response to Reply #98
107. First of all, I have not said anything about banning the burning of
Edited on Thu Sep-09-10 01:47 AM by sabrina 1
books. I don't know where you came up with this. In fact I stated that should a person of standing IN THIS CASE file a lawsuit and even should they win, it would not have any effect on the 1st Amendment. I also pointed out that the civil cases that were filed, were dealt with as individual cases NOT as cases that would set any precedent for the banning of free speech.

You are claiming that there is no basis for a civil suit because Muslims have nothing to fear from this. I demonstrated to you that Muslims have stated that they are fearful. It would require only one person who had reasonable fear, to file a lawsuit.

In the abortion case eg, the free speech argument was made. It was rejected IN THAT CASE. Did that decision eliminate the right to free speech? It did not, but it made clear that in that case there was reason for the targets of the posters to feel fearful.

I also pointed out that not all speech is protected. Since so many in this thread had claimed that anything goes when it comes to free speech I posted examples of why that is a false. Here it is again:

When Are Threats Protected Speech?

The First Amendment to the Constitution declares that "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech." But not all speech is protected by the Constitution. Exceptions exist for speech that is obscene, that presents a clear and present danger, for "fighting words," or for speech intended to incite "imminent lawless action."

Another kind of speech that is not protected is a "true threat" something that a reasonable listener would understand as an actual threat of violence.


And if anything constitutes 'fighting words' under the legal definition, it is this case especially since this moron has admitted his intent and he has been asked not to do it because of the potential for violence of his actions. Additionally both the AG and a U.S. General have warned that what he intends to do 'could be dangerous'.


The Phelpsians Picketing and Fighting Words

Under the fighting words exception, speech is unprotected if tends to incite an immediate breach of the peace by provoking a fight, Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire (1942), so long as the speech consists of a personally abusive epithet[] which, when addressed to the ordinary citizen, , as a matter of common knowledge, inherently likely to provoke violent reaction, Cohen v. California (1971), and is directed to the person of the hearer, and is thus likely to be seen as a direct personal insult. See Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire (1942); Cohen v. California (1971).


So I stand by what I said. That this book-burning while this moron may have the right to do it, is actionable since it poses a threat of violence and of disturbing the peace and it causes individuals to have reasonable fear for their safety.

We have the right to walk under a moving train also.

As far as your making a distinction between the Muslims killed in Iraq and the Fatwas issued by Extremist Muslim clerics and the ensuing violence, there is simply no comparison. The invasion of Iraq was not an 'International War', it was a crime of great magnitude. It was an illegal invasion based on lies and it violated our own domestic laws and International law. Hateful propaganda aimed at Muslims was used to get support for it. Jones is fallout from that crime.

Currently the U.S. is holding Muslims in detention at Gitmo without charges. Hundreds that were illegally held for years without charge then released, were innocent people greatly wronged. While you may be able to dismiss all of these injustices against Muslims, their loved ones, friends, families and fellow citizens do not share your opinion and view all of this as a war on their people and on their religion. That, as I said before, gives this book-burning a whole other dimension than if it were a simple act of protest. And Jones knows it.

As for Muslim extremists being likely to commit violent acts as a result, all extremists will use any excuse to commit violent acts, Timothy McVeigh for instance, the abortion doctor murderers etc. none of whom are Muslims.

It is the very knowledge of the fact that there ARE extremists waiting for an excuse like this, that makes this more than just a protest. And right here we have our own extremists more than willing to do the same thing.

Even if a lawsuit is filed and is successful, it will deal only with this case and will not result in the banning of burning books. I don't know where you got that idea.





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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:44 AM
Response to Reply #107
124. You continue to attempt to confuse the constitutional issues with things that are not relevant
legally. An action that causes fear in another is not by itself actionable. That is the bottom line. Talk to some law pros on this, I did, as recently as this AM. Your position is unsupportable legally in the US.

Since I did not bring up fatwas I could have made no disticntion or comparisions. Not sure why you did since they are not relevant.

I have been saying for some time that this is not a simple book burning but a deliverate and provacative sacriledge designed to inflame international muslims. That is clear as day. To compare mass demonstrations and riots where people have died to single terrorists is specious at best.

The ME wars may well be crimes but their status is not relevant to the Constitutional protections afforded these nut cases.

I have never claimed this was about burning books. Its about Constitutional rights of nut cases to be intentionally provocative by committing a public sacrilege against islam. Whether any of us like it or not, it is clearly Constitutionally protected.
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COLGATE4 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:18 PM
Response to Reply #98
131. You can't win. No point in discussing legal issues with a non-lawyer.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:08 PM
Response to Reply #131
147. I took this to some of my law school colleagues...they were amused
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Sep-11-10 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #131
169. People file suits, lawyers are hired to deal with them.
Lawyers have as many opinions as anyone else. But those believe they are being harmed, they are the ones who make these decisions. Sometimes they win, sometimes they don't.

Your condescension was noted. But it seems you were wrong. The moron backed down. I know a few lawyers also, most agreed that once he was told this was dangerous by three members of the U.S. government he definitely could be held liable if anyone was killed.

Looks like he thought better of it after all.

A lot of lawyers took your position on the abortion posters on the internet also. And a lot of 'non-lawyers' disagreed. Lawyers' opinions are as varied as those of non-lawyers. Looks like in the abortion case the non-lawyers got it right.

I'm glad HE realized the legal jeopardy he was in. Too bad instead of supporting this fool, he didn't get that message sooner.
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BlueCheese Donating Member (897 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:34 PM
Response to Reply #64
75. Frankly...
... I think the First Amendment might protect that, depending on the circumstances. If said as a direct attempt to incite immediate violence against Muslims, it would be prohibited. However, if simply discussed as an opinion without the intent of "imminent lawless action", the Supreme Court has ruled that it is protected.

At some point society has to have confidence in itself. My guess is that the people planning this stunt are widely regarded as fringe elements not to be taken seriously. The bar for censorship must be extremely high.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:12 PM
Response to Original message
70. You would need to establish that Koran burning has historically lead to persecution
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 06:14 PM by ProgressiveProfessor
Something what was well established in the SCOTUS decision, but has little precedent with regards to the Koran.

In this case its analogous to flag burning, which historically has been a provocative act. I expect it will be successful in inciting violence somewhere, but not in the US.

At Obama's high school every year for homecoming etc they had a flaming "P". I am sure it intimidated at least one member of the other teams at one point. Should that be illegal too?

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Drale Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 06:37 PM
Response to Original message
76. I think
he has more to worry about from the people in his town and the surounding area then from the government, unless of course there is a large scale attack then you better beleave all the blame will fall on these fools (as it should)
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AnArmyVeteran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:13 PM
Response to Original message
85. It's worse than yelling fire in a theater!!!
This insane right wing fanatic knows his actions will lead to the deaths of our soldiers and Americans but he is so evil he doesn't care. Not one republican leader is condemning him republicans love hate, violence and killing. They are all hypocritical cowards.
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SnakeEyes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:22 AM
Response to Reply #85
105. This is bullshit
Death/injury can occur from yelling fire solely based on the actions of the person yelling fire causing a panic. It's all his fault.

These assholes burning Korans requires the violent actions of other assholes in order for any death/injury to occur. The fault lies with those that choose to respond to free speech with violence.

This is the same bullshit argument that was made against us when protesting the war... that our actions would only encourage the terrorists.
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AnArmyVeteran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 03:57 PM
Response to Reply #105
168. I understand your point, but both are using free speech & both can lead to violence & death.
Edited on Thu Sep-09-10 04:00 PM by AnArmyVeteran
There are a lot of similarities. But the difference is one of the affected groups is motivated by fear to possibly kill and the other uses hatred to possibly kill. The acts of the Koran burner and the person yelling fire are knowingly being reckless and each knows their recklessness can lead to the deaths of others. In either case I would consider them criminals and due fly responsible for any deaths they cause, either directly or indirectly.

If your child was killed by being trampled by terrified people fleeing a supposedly burning building would you excuse the actions of the person ultimately responsible for your child's death (the person yelling "fire")? Or if you were the parent of a soldier who was killed by a rage-filled Muslim who just witnessed his holy book being defiled by a person who provoked his deadly reaction? In each case the instigator of the violence shares in the guilt and should be held accountable. If it was my child who was killed I would primarily blame the person who set the crime in motion for at least reckless endangerment and manslaughter.

I don't see much of a difference...

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Jeff In Milwaukee Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:14 PM
Response to Original message
86. Nope. Nothing here....
Let's start with the concept of Hate Crimes. These are enhancements to any underlying crime -- burning down a house to collect insurance is arson. Burning down a house because the people in it are black is arson with additional penalties. Burning your own personal property on a parcel of land that you own is not a crime (other than violating some local ordinances) and so federal hate crimes laws simply don't apply. One could also easily argue that the actions of 50 members of a nutjob church hardly constitutes a realistic "threat" to the world's 1.5 billion Muslims.

These people are ignorant asshats, but as of this writing, that's not a crime.
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Bragi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:35 PM
Response to Original message
89. Not a strong case made here
Sorry, but I agree with the general sentiment expressed here that there is world of difference between burning crosses on someone's lawn to frighten them, and burning a book as an expression of religious opinion. Jones is an asshat, but his planned burning is protected free speech.

And a question to commenter Sabrina and others who find free speech to be inconvenient:

Are you advocating that limitations be placed on First Amendment rights so as to protect Islam and/or the Koran from being ridiculed, insulted, etc? Are there other groups that should be protected from criticism, ridicule, etc?
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:09 AM
Response to Reply #89
111. you do realize we put restrictions on free speech to protect women...
Sexual harassment laws prohibit sexual based comments which create a hostile workplace for women.

I think the burning of the Koran is protected but if it leads to harassment of Muslims I hope this pastor is sued for every penny he has.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:49 AM
Response to Reply #111
116. The law is gender neutral
Unless the nut cases are doing the harassment, there is not case against them
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:16 AM
Response to Reply #116
121. even if there's no case agaist the church they can be sued..
And be forced to hire a lawyer which will cost them money. This could cost them in the end.

Even if the plaintiffs didn't win a dime the church could be bankrupted.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:48 AM
Response to Reply #121
126. So you support SLAPP suits then?
or only against those we disagree with? They are nut cases, let them do their thing while the rest of us condemn them. If overseas violence occurs, it does. Civil rights and principles matter.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:05 PM
Response to Reply #126
145. I'm not sure about it honestly...
In the case like this where the intent is to incite hatred against an entire group of people I'm just not sure if it enhances civil rights and democratic principles.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:11 PM
Response to Reply #145
148. It about inciting muslims, not hatred against them
Every one in the western world understands that these are nut cases.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:17 PM
Response to Reply #148
151. It's probably both to incite Muslims and incite hatred of them..
No I don't think everyone here thinks they're nutcases. Most conservative Evangelicals share this sentiment against Muslims.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:24 PM
Response to Reply #151
154. I really do not believe it will change this domesitically
Those who hate, already do. Its such a minor event I do not see it encouraging those who already hate into action.
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Puregonzo1188 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 07:54 PM
Response to Original message
91. Are you aware that in the case in question the Supreme Court
overturned the law banning cross burning? They did also rule, that because of cross burning's history as a sign of imminent violence that a state could pass a law banning cross burning with the intent to "inspire fear of bodily harm." The state has to prove intent.

Even if this ruling is applicable, which it isn't, all the court ruled was a state could pass said law and no one has passed a law against Quran burning, so it's not a crime.
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Saboburns Donating Member (690 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 08:23 PM
Response to Original message
93. This is a cut and dry Free Speech case.
And it is protected by the Constitution. There is no wiggle room here.

It's disappointing to see others think differently.

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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:19 AM
Response to Reply #93
112. it's disappointing to me that people seem to believe that this
Pastor and his followers will just burn these Korans and be done with it. Once this is unleashed it's not going to stop with this book burning. This is sure to embolden others to go a step further and commit hate crimes.

I'm not saying it should be banned, I'm simply saying this isn't some show of democratic discourse...it's lighting a stick of dynamite.
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McCamy Taylor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 08:25 PM
Response to Original message
94. Actually, it is. And when US troops die because of this, blame cast upon the "church" will also be
protected free speech.

The interesting part comes when the families of the dead file civil suits against the "church." Any lawyers want to speculate?
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #94
97. Be and interesting case...the foreseeable consequences link would be very political
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 09:29 PM by ProgressiveProfessor
It would in essence state that it was readily foreseeable that muslims due to the destruction of an inanimate objects they did not own turned to violence against innocent strangers. I am not sure that is the kind of statement US courts want to make about islam.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 03:56 AM
Response to Reply #97
110. Again, there is just as much likelihood that Muslims will
be harmed in this country, and in Afghanistan, but then that is nothing new there, we are killing Muslims, pregnant women, children in schools, ordinary citizens, every day.

Your unwillingness to acknowledge the daily slaughter of Muslims by the U.S. is very odd. It's as if they don't count. Those little chidren blown apart by drones, or cluster bombs. The burning of civilians by White Phospherous in Fallujah, all inconsequential to you.

You assume that U.S. courts would not want to highlight Muslim violence? Are you serious? They do not want to highlight U.S. violence, which is why no one has been prosecuted for the war crimes still be committed on a daily basis.

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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:33 AM
Response to Reply #110
114. that's not true..
US troops have been prosecuted and convicted for crimes against Iraqis.

Do you think civilians weren't killed during WW2? Do you think that was war crimes?

Do you acknowledge all the children and the Taliban and Al Qaeda have killed?
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:27 AM
Response to Reply #114
123. A very few soldiers have been convicted but only when there
was a crime so egregious, like the gang-rape and murder and the burning of the body of the little Iraqi girl when someone's conscience finally made them talk and there was no way to cover it up anymore.

From the beginning of the war there were soldiers trying to report crimes, but not being heard. Kevin Benderman was one of them. He refused to return after he saw what he saw and was given orders to shoot at children, which he refused to do. Rather than being awarded a medal for his bravery and honesty, he ended up in jail. So, yes, a few prosecutions when they cannot hide the crime, but literally thousands of crimes that will go unpunished.

Why do your bring up WW2 in the context of Iraq? It is simply not relevant. That was a neocon tactic to try to compare the two.

What the Taliban and the War Lords do is not our business. Afghanistan is their country not ours. We are the invaders and however many died in their conflicts, far, far more have been killed by the NATO Forces since they got there, which is why the people of Afghanistan want them to leave. And have regular protests against the drone killings of their women and children.

Sorry, I opposed both these wars, I have not changed my mind. They were crimes of huge proportions and while Americans can dismiss the deaths of these people, their loved ones never will. Nor would we.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:28 PM
Response to Reply #123
135. I wasn't comparing Iraq to WW2....
You implied that killing civilians even unintentionally is war crime. So now you're saying it's acceptable if it's a war you agree with.

Reminding you that civilians are Killed in all wars is certainly relevant when you define war crime by civilians being killed.

Wow so you only care about Muslims being killed when it can be politicized against a war you oppose...ok.

As far as Kevin Bederman...you can't join the military and be a deserter when you disagree with orders. I highly doubt his commander ordered him to execute children. By this standard any soldier could desert and claim they were ordered to murder civilians.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:48 PM
Response to Reply #135
141. The judge in the Benderman case dismissed all charges
against him except for the refusal to return to Iraq, so it looks like the judge did not doubt his claims. He was facing far more jailtime than he got. He was a ten year veteran of the military and a brave soldier. Why would you doubt him when as far as I know, his claims were never denied officially?

When a war is illegal, every death is murder. That is not my opinion, it is International law and people have been prosecuted under that law. I suppose Taylor from Liberia believes his war was legitimate also, but he is currently on trial at the Hague for war crimes. As should Bush et al be.

Wow so you only care about Muslims being killed when it can be politicized against a war you oppose...ok.

Did you mistake me for someone else you are responding to?

Point taken regarding your comment on WW11. Apparently I misunderstood you, my apologies.

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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:58 PM
Response to Reply #141
143. I agreed with your basic point....
The worry isn't just Muslims getting mad at killing people over the Koran burning but we really need to worry that this will incite bigots to attack Muslims.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:38 PM
Response to Reply #143
156. Yes, I couldn't agree more. In fact I have been trying to make that
point from the beginning to those who appear to believe that only Muslims are likely to become violent. In fact that has been the basis of my argument throughout this thread, that Muslims may have a cause of action because they have been placed in a situation that has caused them to fear for their safety. I posted a link when asked to prove it, to an article which reports that many Muslims from the Gainesville area are planning to leave before this event takes place.

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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:03 PM
Response to Reply #156
160. I read that as well..
Muslims leaving that area.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:53 AM
Response to Reply #110
117. You continue to attempt to confuse the constitutional issues with things that are not relevant
legally. An action that causes fear in another is not by itself actionable. That is the bottom line.

Yes lots of people have died in the ME, and the vast majority of them are muslim. Yes it is going on daily. Its not relevant legally to the nut jobs and their constitutional rights.

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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #97
113. even if a lawsuit is thrown out it costs money to hire lawyers..
So I'd be happy with bankrupting the church. Not if Muslims attack our troops but if some idiot commits a hate crime against Muslims because of this.

Just because a lawsuit has little merit it can still do damage to the defendant.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:46 AM
Response to Reply #113
125. So you support SLAPP suits?
These guys are nut cases, who may well end up causing a great deal of trouble. However, we should not be willing to toss away basic protections just because of what they are saying.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:31 PM
Response to Reply #125
136. 1st amendment doesn't shield people from being sued if their
Actions result in damaging effects.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:05 PM
Response to Reply #136
146. Are you aware of what a SLAPP suit is and why some states have laws against it?
Your position of suing them just to stop them under threat of legal bills is one of the classic definitions of a SLAPP suit. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strategic_lawsuit_against_public_participation. Florida does have anti SLAPP laws in place
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:13 PM
Response to Reply #146
149. I'm not a lawyer...I'm just hoping Jones faces some negative
Consequence. Karma is a bitch.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:22 PM
Response to Reply #149
152. I don't expect he will, zealots of any strip never really do
I did see a CNN video where a CAIR leader declared that he has been assured by the Gainesville authorities that the bonfire will never start ('You will not see a bonfire of Qurans'). Its worth a look, though I can not seem to get a direct link to it. That leaves the city wide open for a civil rights suit.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #152
155. it'd be ironic and funny if they accidentally burn the church down...
God sending a message....
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #155
158. I would settle for a heavy rain
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:05 PM
Response to Reply #158
162. I wish the media would stop paying attention to right wing
nuts
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:45 PM
Response to Reply #162
166. Saw in another thread that AP will not publish pictures of the event
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Zanzobar Donating Member (276 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 08:39 PM
Response to Original message
95. Here is my opinion
Edited on Wed Sep-08-10 08:42 PM by Zanzobar
1) "However, such intent cannot be inferred from the act of cross-burning itself; it must be separately proven."

Your own evidence contradicts your supposition. It must be separately proven.

2) Florida Statute 806.13, Section 4(2)

You're taking the meaning well beyond its intent. You're arguing that because there might be one religious artifact in a place of worship, that all identical privately owned artifacts are given the same consideration. That is clearly a misrepresentation.

3) "willingly injures, intimidates or interferes with another person, or attempts to do so, by force because of the other person's race, color, religion or national origin"

Without the subordinate clause, the passage reads "willingly injures, intimidates or interferes with another person by force"

There is no force.

4) A. Federal Hate Crime Provisions

There must be a crime for there to be a hate crime. In my opinion, there is no crime.
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TexasObserver Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:24 AM
Response to Reply #95
106. Accurate point by point rebuttal to the OP.
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totodeinhere Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 08:40 PM
Response to Original message
96. I still don't understand how this is different than flag burning.
If burning the Quran is illegal because it is threatening, then why isn't flag burning illegal for the same reason? Using your same logic you could make a case that burning an American flag is tantamount to threatening America.

I think you are grasping at straws here. IMO it is always better to ere on the side of free speech. Plus I don't get how burning the Quran threatens anyone. That nutcase in Florida is not threatening physical harm to any Muslim. If he did that he'd be in jail already. He intends to burn a book, not people who are Muslims.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #96
99. Its not
The citation being used is massively out of context and not applicable.
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depakid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 10:02 PM
Response to Reply #99
100. It's applicable alright- but would require evidence beyond the mere act of burning
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 11:27 PM
Response to Reply #100
102. I do not see how it could be without an ordinance....which does not exist at this time
The SCOTUS ruling was that a state could make cross burning with intent to intimidate etc illegal, but would have to prove the intent. The mere act of cross burning could not be prima facie illegal.

Since there is no Federal or Florida ordinance about Koran burning and associated intent to intimidate, the ruling is not directly applicable. Furthermore since it is not a crime, hate crime enhancements do not apply.

The SPLC citation being used is weak and is more of an advocacy piece than a balanced legal discussion. People need to read up on the decisions themselves.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 10:40 AM
Response to Reply #96
115. my issue is and difference between this and flagburning....
Is that the burning of a Koran or Jewish books or some symbol of a minority group is intended to provoke hate and animosity towards a minority. Once that happens it's hard to imagine the line will be drawn at burning books.

Did the Nazis stop at burning books by Jewish authors?
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:53 AM
Response to Reply #115
129. Its not about engendering hate, its about deliberately committing sacrilege against islam
Nazi book burnings were done by the state, this is a private action by a bunch of nut cases.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:43 PM
Response to Reply #129
139. no Nazi book burning wasn't done by the state....
Much of it was by the German student association and other private citizens.

This Koran burning isn't about just protesting Islam but attacking Muslim people. It's intent is to incite hatred against a minority group just as the Nazis did.
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totodeinhere Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:42 PM
Response to Reply #115
138. And the burning of the American flag was intended to provoke hate against America.
I still don't see the difference. Now if someone takes this beyond burning the Quran and breaks a law, it will be dealt with accordingly by the authorities. That's why your analogy with the Nazis is off base. Then, the burners were the authorities. In this case, the burner is a lone nut case and the authorities are there to intervene if it goes beyond this symbolic act.
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Green_Lantern Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:53 PM
Response to Reply #138
142. the burning of the American flag by Americans was not about
Trying to incite hatred of Americans but to show a disdain for the govt. The people burning it were Americans so it makes no sense to say they wanted to provoke hate against themselves.

No...the Nazi book burning didn't involve police or military burning books. The German student association organized it. You do realize the Nazis were basically a private militia that took over the state.
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Confusious Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-08-10 11:59 PM
Response to Original message
103. As someone said above, nonsense.

They can burn to their hearts desire, just as long as it's on their property, and the fire marshall says they can.

If what you said is true, burning the american flag would be illegal, which it is not.
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sabrina 1 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:21 AM
Response to Reply #103
104. The Fire Dept has already said they cannot.
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COLGATE4 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:21 PM
Response to Reply #104
132. That's fine, but it's not a Constitutional issue. They can't burn
because they don't have a burn permit. (And, if they were denied a burn permit in order to shut down their right to express their beliefs THEY would have a great Constitutional suit against the City of Gainesville).
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:51 PM
Response to Reply #132
159. There is a CAIR rep on CNN video declaring that the city has assured them there will be no bonfire
The city has also stated it will bill the church for security costs. I am not the only one seeing an opportunity for a civil rights suit here and I have no doubt some conservative group will do it pro bono
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Bragi Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 11:01 AM
Response to Original message
120. This isn't about combustion
Edited on Thu Sep-09-10 11:01 AM by Bragi
It occurs to me that the only thing common between the KKK cross-burnings and what Jones plans to do is that they both involve combustion. Combustion isn't the issue.
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Realityhack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:25 PM
Response to Original message
133. I see that you are not a lawyer. n/t
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woo me with science Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:33 PM
Response to Original message
137. Most ignorant post on DU. nt
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Rage for Order Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 12:59 PM
Response to Original message
144. You've got a serious hard-on at the prospect of undermining the First Amendment
You're chomping at the bit to censor someone you don't agree with. What a wonderful road that will turn out to be once we start down that path.
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Codeine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:23 PM
Response to Reply #144
153. Now, now -- I'm sure our DU Commissariat will only censor
the right people.
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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #153
157. The mods have been good about letting this continue
Minor name calling is about all I have seen
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:18 PM
Response to Reply #157
163. I think people have been pretty civil...when discussion ensues...
some good points about the act being protected and not protected under the first amendment.

I still see it as a gray area leaning toward some legal action being taken and ultimately found that in this instance...the burning of the Quran was not protected speech but ultimately the intent was to intimidate Muslims.

I think there is ample opportunity for legal action on this matter after the event occurs.

Some curious observations about some of the response by Obama Admin.

1. Admin has issued a statement.
2. Military has issued a statement.
3. Attorney General issued a statement.

I don't think these entities would of done so without first consulting council.

My guess is they sure as hell don't want this to be an example of free speech and have
people lining up to burn Quran's in every city and the "hallowed ground" of the WTC site.

Nope. If they burn them...there will be some sort of legal action.

We are not at war with Islam. We are at war with radical terrorists. Someone is confusing that distinction and it will be dealt with.

Even if ultimately it fails in the courts. But somewhere right now people are already making plans to make sure that the U.S. Government sends the message that Islam is not our enemy.





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ProgressiveProfessor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:37 PM
Response to Reply #163
165. There is always opportunity for legal action, but FL has some stiff SLAPP penalties
Edited on Thu Sep-09-10 02:38 PM by ProgressiveProfessor
I agree that the administration must have consulted council (most of them are lawyers anyway) and that is the reason they have made statements and not gone to court. There is no effective means to prevent the nut cases from going forward, and post facto legal action by the Federal government is also very unlikely due to no chance of success, counter suits, and politics.

A video on CNN has a CAIR rep saying that the city of Gainesville will not allow a bonfire of Korans. Another media report is that the city is going to bill the church for security related costs. I do not believe either will be successful and attempting to do so will result in civil rights suits against the any agency that tries. Its a sure bet that there are RW legal groups salivating at the prospect.

I can not see how the reasonable person standard can be met in this case with less than 100 nutcases doing this and the massive protest and rejections of it from all levels of government and society in the US, not to mention the world.

Sacrilege is not a crime in the US, nor should it be. Others have burned the Koran and done other sacrileges against islam without penalty. Other than being slammed and shunned, this group will not be legally punished either.

As repugnant as it is, its Constitutionally protected activity and it can not be legally stopped, in Gainesville or elsewhere.
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Evasporque Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 02:32 PM
Response to Original message
164. Burning religious objects...with the intent to intimidate
Edited on Thu Sep-09-10 02:33 PM by Evasporque
is that really free speech...?

The burning of a cross was created to strike terror into the hearts of African Americans. It showed people who was in power and who was determining the fate of others. To willfully destroy an object of reverence with the intent to strike fear and intimidation is not protected speech.

Proving the intent is required. The actual act of burning the religious text is not in itself a crime. But I honestly feel that doing so to marginalize, demonize, intimidate or otherwise deny a group their right of freedom of worship trumps the right to free speech. The latter is the part that must be proven in any legal action. I think it could be. I think others do too.

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Codeine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-09-10 03:13 PM
Response to Reply #164
167. Yes, that really is free speech.
Deal with it.
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