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Quote of the Day - Intolerance has been the curse of every age and state. - Samuel Davies
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Yes, Goddammit, You Can Curse In A Public Meeting

Can you take the Lord's name in vain in a township meeting?  According to the Sixth Circuit, yes you can.  The court categorized one upset citizen's statement to the town's board, "That's why you're in a goddamn lawsuit,"  as mild profanity.  If you've seen Chris Rock, that's a certainty.  If you've been to church, perhaps not. 

But this statement didn't arise in either of those venues.  It arose during the portion of a public hearing where Thomas Leonard made the statement.  He is the husband of Sarah Leonard, who was in a suit with the City of Montrose, Michigan, over the loss of her towing company's contract, and was addressing the town's board.  He was taken outside and arrested for disorderly conduct, held in jail for an hour and released.  The charges were later dropped. 

As you'll see from reading the exchange between the participants in the meeting, one of the town board's members took issue with Leonard's "using the Lord's name in vain."  Free speech rights, however, allow this type of exchange, and preclude the police from arresting people for expressing their opinions as long as they're not otherwise disorderly.

Thank God.

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Wednesday, January 31, 2007 at 14:10 Comments Closed (1) |
 
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