Monday, March 29, 2010

Sometimes bad cases make good law

Most of you are well acquainted with the antics of professional scumbag Fred Phelps, whose mantra "God Hates Fags" now extends to anyone who dies in defense of our Constitution that defends the right of homosexuals to exist.

Now, adding insult to injury, the father of a fallen Marine, whose funeral Phelps' "church" picketed, has been ordered by the Fourth Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals to pay court costs for that cockroach Phelps.

If there is a God, I am certain that Phelps will be writhing in the next life in some serious pain (of his own making) for being so loathsome in this life. But under the U.S. Constitution, it was Phelps who was wronged. His First Amendment freedom was infringed upon by a grieving father, and the most conservative Court of Appeals in the country upheld Phelps' right to speak evil.

I applaud the court for its principled stand. Freedom of speech is far too precious to deny even to a hate-filled homophobe whose own self-promoting celebrity status now makes him fair game for satirists and bloggers.

There is a well-known legal maxim that "bad cases make for bad law". No judge wants to have Fred Phelps for a poster child. But our Constitution is not a fair-weather friend, and a country that might censor a devil today would silence an angel tomorrow. Even in death, that Marine served in defense of our country and the values we hold dear, first among which is the right to speak freely. I salute both father and son for their sacrifice.

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