Free Speech: Court Reverses $5 Million Ruling Against Gay, Jew, and Soldier-Hating Westboro Baptist Church
A federal appeals court reversed a $5 million judgment (originally an $11 million judgment, which was reduced) against Fred Phelps' Westboro Baptist Church, ruling that the church's protest outside the funeral of an Iraq veteran was free speech:
"The ruling from the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va., held that the signs and writings of the Westboro Baptist Church, which included anti-gay and anti-military messages, are protected by the First Amendment. The Topeka-based congregation has protested at military funerals across the country."
The dead Marine's father says he will appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
In related news, the WBC has begun an assault on New York City, targeting Brooklyn Tech because the school says "it’s OK to be gay."
They'll also target Jewish temples:
"The bigots will protest on Saturday in front of Congregation Beth Elohim on Eighth Avenue in Park Slope at 9:45 am, at Union Temple on Eastern Parkway in Prospect Heights at 10 am and the Kane Street Synagogue in Cobble Hill at 12:30 pm on the eve of Yom Kippur, the holiest day on the Jewish calendar. On Wednesday, church spokeswoman Shirley Phelps-Roper said the rallies were not anti-Jewish or anti-gay. 'How about we call it an ‘Obey your God’ rally?' she said. 'You Jews and gays have got to put away your false gods, your idols and your filthy way of life.' She added that 'God hates the disobedient.' ... 'We picked these weekends because these are the high holidays,' she said. 'You Jews broke the covenant with God. The beast is going to bring the nations to march upon Jerusalem. Your houses will be destroyed and your women ravaged. It’s going to make the Holocaust, the Babylonian captivity and the destruction of the Temple look like a tea party.'"
A video of the group outside Jewish Theological Seminary yesterday, singing "Hava Nagila", AFTER THE JUMP...