Why Fred Phelps should have avoided rousting a slumbering giant
It would be unfair to suggest that the American populace was asleep to the vile and perfidious acts of the Westboro Baptist Church, but where once we rested, now we attack. So many updates to the previous post that it neccesitated a new posting just to keep track of it all. 1) The Albert Snyder Fund: As of this morning, not counting any checks that came in this weekend, we have raised $17,236 from 395 people who would not allow this ignominy to befall a Gold Star Dad. I hope to thank each and every one of you in a personal email or letter when I manage to get my head above water. That during a time of such economic uncertainty you could find it in your heart to donate to this cause at a rate of over $40 per donation is a testament to the power of the American People to address grieveances with grace and class. I can not thank you enough. 2) We just spoke with Sean Summers, the lead lawyer on the Snyder Case, and we are placing the money in an escrow account. The money will be used for various expenses, like hiring experts, writing the briefs etc. 3) We are already at work on preparing a legal brief to accompany Mr. Snyder's claim to the Supreme Court. The American Legion will be submitting this amicus curiea ("Friend of the Court") brief asserting that neither the Free Exercise of Religion, now First Amendment rights to Free Speech are proper defenses to the torts alledged by Mr. Snyder. This isn't solely about First Amendment rights, but rather what role the First Amendment limits recovery for other torts recognized by the States which enact such laws to protect their citizens. It will also deal with "Fighting Words" and other fun jurisprudential stuff. If you are a lawyer, and want to help, send me an email. I have been tasked with putting this document together, and I welcome any help someone might provide. 4) Here's a video, because we all love videos: 5) I want to thank Al Kulas, out of WKBK in New Hampshire for having me on this weekend. If you care to listen to that segment, you can do so by clicking this link. 6) WBC won't be trying this in South Dakota any time soon:
People carrying signs are protesting at military funerals across the country. The largest group is from Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas. They claim God is killing soldiers because Americans tolerate homosexuality. They can't show up with their signs in South Dakota. That's thanks to a push from members of the American Legion. When Westboro Church members came to South Dakota in 2005 to protest the funeral of a fallen soldier, Michael Schmidt and Myron Joneson recruited Legion members to take action. "The terrible signs that they carried and the noise that they made and it was just deplorable," said Joneson. So they went to Pierre hoping for help. And the legislature agreed upon blocking protestors at funerals. "We had just a little controversy, but not very much and before I left Pierre that night that bill was on the Governor's desk and it was already law," said Joneson. It was declared an emergency. That means the bill became law as soon as Governor Mike Rounds signed it.7) FACEBOOK: I support Al Snyder in His fight against Westboro Baptist Church 226,000 members and climbing. Make It Illegal to Protest at Military Funerals 222,000 and climbing as well. 8) Other groups weighing in:
On Monday the American Legion led the charge to raise funds for Al Synder, the father of a fallen Marine who sued the church, after the Fourth Circuit Court ordered him to pay the group's legal fees -- totaling more than $16,000 -- after losing his argument on an appeal. Within 24 hours the group had collected nearly half that total. But they aren't the only ones offering support. Here's at quick look at what some other prominent veterans groups are saying: AMVETS: "I hope the Supreme Court rules that this hateful church cannot impede on the First Amendment rights of the Snyder family and other military families, who have the right to freely practice their religious beliefs, which should include dignified funeral proceedings." VoteVets: "I'm not an attorney, but hopefully one of our readers who is can explain this [situation] to me. Otherwise, this just seems like a complete load of shit." IAVA: "Phelps and his gang make me sick." VFW: “This is a travesty at best and borders on the obscene. The irony in this whole situation is that the blood and sacrifice of our nation’s heroes have enabled this group to spread their message of hate. Yet, they celebrate when one of America’s best pays the ultimate sacrifice preserving that right of free speech." Supporters have also started a Facebook page to support Snyder, and are linking directly to his website in an effort to keep funds flowing towards his defense.