Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 09-19-2019, 12:02 PM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738

When your strongest values collide


Ran across this story in the morning paper. Found it quite curious, because it addresses a direct conflict between 2 of the "values" I hold most dear.

If I were to list the "values" I hold most dear, free speech is likely at the top of my personal list. While it is not quite in the same category of "value", I have little respect for pretty much anything related to organized religion, and I despise evangelicals. Maybe more of a prejudice than a value. So I found interesting my reaction to this story.

Wheaton College is a very religious college 20-some miles west of Chicago. Founded by or strongly associated w/ Billy Graham. The town of Wheaton was dry until a couple of decades ago, and if you walk in their downtown, you are liable to be accosted by young people asking if you have accepted Jesus as your personal savior. I tend to find such behavior obnoxious, but as a strong supporter of free speech, I have to acknowledge that they should be allowed to use the public sidewalks and that my response is through speech.

So apparently these bible-thumpers got into the habit of taking the train into Chicago and harassing people in Millenium Park - one of Chicago's most popular tourist sites. Apparently there are some regulations restricting proselytizing, political speech, etc. to a specific area of the park. My initial reaction was - Great! If I'm in a park, the last thing I want is to be hassled by some zealot. But I quickly acknowledged the other hand, on which public parks are among the most appropriate forums for speech.

Maybe not quite along the lines of the Nazis marching in Skokie, but similar WRT my personal values.

Wondering if anyone had thoughts about this situation, or other instances in which you found yourself conflicted, or where your values had you supporting someone you disfavor.
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #2  
Old 09-19-2019, 12:12 PM
bobot's Avatar
bobot is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Chicago-ish
Posts: 9,127
My understanding is that they're just being asked not to do it so close to the Bean where all the tourist want to hang out and snap pictures. Distribute your stuff, that's cool, but just do it over there, OK? I can live with that.
  #3  
Old 09-19-2019, 12:25 PM
Little Nemo is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,461
People should be free to speak. But other people should be free to ignore them.

Nobody has a right to force other people to listen to their speech. So I feel it's a reasonable regulation to say that people can speak in a public place but limit it so that other people can still use the public place without having to hear your speech.
  #4  
Old 09-19-2019, 12:27 PM
QuickSilver is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2000
Posts: 19,048
I'd be just as annoyed if a fellow atheist decided to lecture everyone in the park on evils of faith and religion.

I guess Public Nuisance Laws are in force which limit that sort of haranguing of the public to a limited area. As long as I can easily avoid it, let 'em rant. Just keep it the fuck down.
__________________
St. QuickSilver: Patron Saint of Thermometers.
  #5  
Old 09-19-2019, 12:29 PM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobot View Post
My understanding is that they're just being asked not to do it so close to the Bean where all the tourist want to hang out and snap pictures. Distribute your stuff, that's cool, but just do it over there, OK? I can live with that.
How do you rationalize that? I can imagine saying don't set up tables or banners, don't touch others, don't solicit donations, no amplified devices, don't aggressively pursue them if told to fuck off... But as annoying as I find it, having someone come up to me in a public park and nonviolently express their view on just about any topic, while offering me literature at no charge? I have a hard time thinking why one area of a particular park ought to be closed off for that purpose.

And I did not look into it deeply, but understood that the park was divided into 11 areas, and proselytizing was allowed in only 1 of them.
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #6  
Old 09-19-2019, 12:53 PM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
Fuck 'em. Throw them in jail for Disturbing the Peace. When they protest said imprisonment, run Chaplinsky v New Hampshire at them. That is, if Illinois has a law like New Hampshire's that prohibits intentionally offensive, derisive, or annoying speech to any person who is lawfully in a street or public area. If Illinois/Chicago doesn't have such a law, they need one.
  #7  
Old 09-19-2019, 01:03 PM
glee is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Obama country
Posts: 15,615
For me, the key point about free speech is that you can criticise the Government. If you can't then you effectively have a dictatorship.

Having the right free speech otherwise should be limited by politeness. You shouldn't be able to tell lies about people, nor harass them, in public.
  #8  
Old 09-19-2019, 01:07 PM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus View Post
... If Illinois/Chicago doesn't have such a law, they need one.
Interesting. I was not aware. I'll have to look into how they define their terms and enforce it.

But I'm pretty sure IL/Chi does not have such a law. If they did, I'm pretty sure I'd be aware.

Reminds me of an incident - almost 30 yrs ago - that really drove home to me how much I value free speech rights. I was minding my own business on a nice sunny day, walking to the commuter train with all the other lemmings. Along a downtown street (Randoph, just E of Wacker) those anti-abortion assholes had their posters of (purported) aborted fetuses, with their small children passing out literature. I fel assaulted. And my first reaction was anger. I wanted to kick over the posters, and maybe even confront the idiots. But instead, something in me made me think that if their offensive speech was so powerful that it incited such a strong reaction in me, that confirmed my belief that speech ought be abridged as little as possible.

Just my reaction and values - not necessarily anyone else's.

On edit - wow - I really didn't think my advocacy of minimal constraints on speech would qualify me as an outlier around these parts.
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.

Last edited by Dinsdale; 09-19-2019 at 01:08 PM.
  #9  
Old 09-19-2019, 01:17 PM
manson1972's Avatar
manson1972 is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 12,024
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dinsdale View Post
On edit - wow - I really didn't think my advocacy of minimal constraints on speech would qualify me as an outlier around these parts.
Well, I agree with you. Not sure if that helps or hurts you
  #10  
Old 09-19-2019, 01:20 PM
Velocity is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 15,391
I find myself regularly conflicted on this in Taiwanese politics. I tend to be a socially conservative person, but I am also extremely adamant against the idea of Taiwan becoming part of China. There are two main parties in Taiwan; the KMT (conservative) and DPP (liberal) parties. The conservative party favors becoming part of China; the liberal party favors independence. So I am internally conflicted on such issues.
  #11  
Old 09-19-2019, 01:39 PM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
Quote:
Originally Posted by manson1972 View Post
Well, I agree with you. Not sure if that helps or hurts you
A disturbing occurence that seems to happen all too frequently. And I suspect you may feel the same!
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #12  
Old 09-19-2019, 05:48 PM
EinsteinsHund's Avatar
EinsteinsHund is online now
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: NRW, Germany
Posts: 3,058
Well, isn't this an issue you can easily solve either by a polite "No thanks, not interested" or, if you're so inclined, a hearty "fuck off"?
__________________
And if my thought-dreams could be seen
They’d probably put my head in a guillotine
  #13  
Old 09-19-2019, 05:57 PM
kayT is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: Austin
Posts: 5,205
I don't see why limiting the "free speech" activities to an area is an infringement. We make you go to a specific area to take a leak, right?
  #14  
Old 09-19-2019, 08:18 PM
mjmlabs's Avatar
mjmlabs is online now
A Rather Dubious Fellow Indeed
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: The Last Green Valley
Posts: 445
As the ACLU has to remind folks all too often, IMHO, it's not popular speech that requires protection. (Disclosure: I hate Illinois Nazis as much as Jake Blues ever did, and I carry my ACLU card proudly.) So yeah, even though I'm a pretty committed atheist, I think the evangelical nutjobs should be able to speak their piece anywhere in the park.

I imagine the Chamber of Commerce disagrees.
__________________
Take care of yourselves, and those around you. -- Margo Timmins

Last edited by mjmlabs; 09-19-2019 at 08:19 PM.
  #15  
Old 09-19-2019, 10:02 PM
Little Nemo is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,461
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjmlabs View Post
So yeah, even though I'm a pretty committed atheist, I think the evangelical nutjobs should be able to speak their piece anywhere in the park.
Should they be allowed to speak their piece anywhere they want? If they buy a ticket to a movie, can they get up during the show and begin preaching to the crowd? Presumably with a megaphone so they can be heard over the movie.
  #16  
Old 09-19-2019, 10:24 PM
mjmlabs's Avatar
mjmlabs is online now
A Rather Dubious Fellow Indeed
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: The Last Green Valley
Posts: 445
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Should they be allowed to speak their piece anywhere they want? If they buy a ticket to a movie, can they get up during the show and begin preaching to the crowd? Presumably with a megaphone so they can be heard over the movie.
No. I think you'll find that I wrote "anywhere in the park." See, the park is a public place, open to all, without charge or limitation.

Sorry for any confusion. (I really do feel sorry for anyone who was confused by what I wrote. Lord, it can't be easy for such as them.)

Last edited by mjmlabs; 09-19-2019 at 10:25 PM.
  #17  
Old 09-20-2019, 01:12 AM
Rocketeer is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Posts: 7,197
Rather more comically, I dread the day when the only place I can buy model paint is WalMart. Tha values collision will rock the heavens.
  #18  
Old 09-20-2019, 07:41 AM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
A buddy of mine whose views I generally respect addressed this issue today. He proposes allowing proselytizing throughout the park, except for a buffer zone around the cloudgate/bean sculpture (one of the park's most popular features.) I believe he proposes 100'.

At first blush, his proposal sounds like a reasonable compromise. Both sides get something, neither side is completely satisfied.

But I'm not entirely convinced. What compelling government or social interest permits restricting the area around the bean? And what is magical about 100'? Why not 50'? Or 150'?

According to his column, the current rules allow proselytizers in the far NW corner of the park - sort of the formal gateway (which I don't know if I've EVER been to in my several visits of the park), and the sidewalks surrounding the park.

In case anyone is interested, here is a map of the park.
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #19  
Old 09-20-2019, 08:22 AM
Machine Elf is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Challenger Deep
Posts: 12,291
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Should they be allowed to speak their piece anywhere they want? If they buy a ticket to a movie, can they get up during the show and begin preaching to the crowd? Presumably with a megaphone so they can be heard over the movie.
That's entirely up to the theatre owner.
  #20  
Old 09-20-2019, 08:38 AM
John Bredin is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: BuffaloGrove IL (Chicago)
Posts: 2,065
How about preaching on the Metra train to/from Chicago?* Metra is a public entity, but arguably not a public forum because it has one purpose, transportation. And while talking on the train is obviously allowed (yes, even in the quiet car), preaching to random commuters who want to be left alone and effectively can't leave (they can go to another car, but are hardly going to leave the train before their destination) is obnoxious.

*I'm curious if these Wheaton students preached on the trains during these trips. If not, could it be that they realize preaching to a captive audience is obnoxious? Or were they afraid that the conductor would remove them? And if they did preach, what did the conductors do?
  #21  
Old 09-20-2019, 08:58 AM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
I wonder if there is some provision against "soliciting" or engaging in behavior that "annoys/offends" other passengers. At least if other passengers complained.
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #22  
Old 09-20-2019, 09:24 AM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dinsdale View Post
But I'm not entirely convinced. What compelling government or social interest permits restricting the area around the bean?
Tourist dollars. I'm quite sure the city lawyers could craft a law requiring such people to keep 100' from the Cloud, or completely out of that section of the park. That would leave 5/6ths of the park open to the nutballs and keep the tourists from being bothered.
  #23  
Old 09-20-2019, 09:53 AM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus View Post
Tourist dollars. I'm quite sure the city lawyers could craft a law requiring such people to keep 100' from the Cloud, or completely out of that section of the park. That would leave 5/6ths of the park open to the nutballs and keep the tourists from being bothered.
I guess I'm leery about carving out restrictions I agree with, for fear that opens the door to creating restrictions I DON'T.

And I try to avoid most slippery slope arguments, but why just THIS exception? Immediately south of the bean is the Crown Fountain, which I imagine is the 2d most visited portion of the park (at least in warm weather.) Really neat the cross section of people and kids who splash around in it - I've seen TV stars and their kids, next to what appear to be inner city kids. Why not ban the nutballs from there? And just a couple of blocks away is the Buckingham Fountain - another major tourist draw...
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #24  
Old 09-20-2019, 10:21 AM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
Oh, I agree with you. Either you believe in Free Speech for people you hate or you don't believe in it at all. I'm just pointing out the legal and practical ways a city can localize groups that assault and demean people in public.
  #25  
Old 09-20-2019, 10:25 AM
Shodan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Milky Way Galaxy
Posts: 39,990
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dinsdale View Post
A buddy of mine whose views I generally respect addressed this issue today. He proposes allowing proselytizing throughout the park, except for a buffer zone around the cloudgate/bean sculpture (one of the park's most popular features.) I believe he proposes 100'.

At first blush, his proposal sounds like a reasonable compromise. Both sides get something, neither side is completely satisfied.

But I'm not entirely convinced. What compelling government or social interest permits restricting the area around the bean? And what is magical about 100'? Why not 50'? Or 150'?

According to his column, the current rules allow proselytizers in the far NW corner of the park - sort of the formal gateway (which I don't know if I've EVER been to in my several visits of the park), and the sidewalks surrounding the park.

In case anyone is interested, here is a map of the park.
This. What is the compelling public interest for limiting speech at all, in any part of the park? Because (some) people don't want to hear it? It's a public space - freedom of speech applies to all public spaces.

If atheists want to try to convince me that there is no God in a public park, feel free. I will either engage, or not, depending on how I feel. If it crosses the line into harassment, and that is obviously going to be a gray area, that's one thing. Just having four atheists handing out leaflets asking me about the Flying Spaghetti Monster or the Invisible Pink Unicorn is another.

If they are not letting tourists take pictures of the Cloud, that is interfering with other people's use of the park. Not letting Wheaton students proselytize is also interfering, and with a right that is a lot more important than tourism.

Regards,
Shodan
  #26  
Old 09-20-2019, 10:26 AM
Knowed Out's Avatar
Knowed Out is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: North Kakkalakee
Posts: 14,981
I remember reading about a Buddhist temple that had a cockroach problem. They venerate all life, so they were deeply conflicted. After days of prayer and meditation, they decided to call the exterminator. They drew the line at cockroaches.
  #27  
Old 09-20-2019, 10:45 AM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knowed Out View Post
I remember reading about a Buddhist temple that had a cockroach problem. They venerate all life, so they were deeply conflicted. After days of prayer and meditation, they decided to call the exterminator. They drew the line at cockroaches.
As should the city of Chicago.
  #28  
Old 09-20-2019, 11:07 AM
Inigo Montoya's Avatar
Inigo Montoya is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: On the level, if inclined
Posts: 16,147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knowed Out View Post
I remember reading about a Buddhist temple that had a cockroach problem. They venerate all life, so they were deeply conflicted. After days of prayer and meditation, they decided to call the exterminator. They drew the line at cockroaches.
A remarkably apt comparison to the OP's scenario. Listen, everyone in this country has heard about JC and the works perpetrated by his ostensible followers. I'd be willing to bet only one in a hundred proselytizers ever gets a sincere, "Jesus who? What are you on about? Tell me more!" in their entire life. What they do is really no different from publicly encouraging people to force their kids to drink bleach. Free Speech: There is raising the alarm about a corrupt government, which is annoying to hear all the time but vital for actual freedom in our material world; and then there is this evangelical crap, which is trivially different from leaving steaming piles of shit all over the park. It's annoying, unwanted, and leads to all manner of ill health. Yes, they should be shut down.

Last edited by Inigo Montoya; 09-20-2019 at 11:08 AM.
  #29  
Old 09-20-2019, 11:44 AM
Shodan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Milky Way Galaxy
Posts: 39,990
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knowed Out View Post
I remember reading about a Buddhist temple that had a cockroach problem. They venerate all life, so they were deeply conflicted. After days of prayer and meditation, they decided to call the exterminator. They drew the line at cockroaches.
The joke I heard was the Lutheran church which had a mouse problem. One day, they all disappeared. They asked the pastor how he did it.

"I just confirmed those mice, and I never saw them again."

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inigo Montoya View Post
A remarkably apt comparison to the OP's scenario. Listen, everyone in this country has heard about JC and the works perpetrated by his ostensible followers. I'd be willing to bet only one in a hundred proselytizers ever gets a sincere, "Jesus who? What are you on about? Tell me more!" in their entire life. What they do is really no different from publicly encouraging people to force their kids to drink bleach. Free Speech: There is raising the alarm about a corrupt government, which is annoying to hear all the time but vital for actual freedom in our material world; and then there is this evangelical crap, which is trivially different from leaving steaming piles of shit all over the park. It's annoying, unwanted, and leads to all manner of ill health. Yes, they should be shut down.
Emphasis added.

This is content-based censorship, and is outlawed by the Constitution.

It always amazes me - Trump is President, the Supreme Court has lost its liberal majority, and people want the government to decide what is important free speech and what is a public nuisance to be shut down.

"Free speech for me, but not for thee" doesn't work.
Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus
Fuck 'em. Throw them in jail for Disturbing the Peace. When they protest said imprisonment, run Chaplinsky v New Hampshire at them. That is, if Illinois has a law like New Hampshire's that prohibits intentionally offensive, derisive, or annoying speech to any person who is lawfully in a street or public area.
Tell you what, Inigo - get the above law passed, go stand by the Cloud, repeat exactly what you posted above, and then explain to the police why you shouldn't be arrested for annoying people to no purpose.

Regards,
Shodan
  #30  
Old 09-20-2019, 12:10 PM
HurricaneDitka is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 14,571
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shodan View Post
... It always amazes me - Trump is President, the Supreme Court has lost its liberal majority, and people want the government to decide what is important free speech and what is a public nuisance to be shut down. ...
This, exactly. WTF are you guys (looking specifically at Inigo and silenus) thinking? Are you really so short-sighted that you can't see the myriad ways your attitude, if adopted more broadly, is going to backfire spectacularly on you?
  #31  
Old 09-20-2019, 12:58 PM
Little Nemo is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Western New York
Posts: 82,461
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjmlabs View Post
No. I think you'll find that I wrote "anywhere in the park." See, the park is a public place, open to all, without charge or limitation.
Movie theaters are open to anyone who wishes to enter them. And I specifically said the speaker bought a ticket. So I don't see the relevance of your exception.
  #32  
Old 09-20-2019, 01:01 PM
Velocity is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Posts: 15,391
Quote:
Originally Posted by Knowed Out View Post
I remember reading about a Buddhist temple that had a cockroach problem. They venerate all life, so they were deeply conflicted. After days of prayer and meditation, they decided to call the exterminator. They drew the line at cockroaches.
Not to derail the thread, but do they slap mosquitoes?

Use antibiotics to kill off bacterial infections? Chemotherapy to kill cancer cells?

Not being snarky, genuinely inquiring.
  #33  
Old 09-20-2019, 01:08 PM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Movie theaters are open to anyone who wishes to enter them. And I specifically said the speaker bought a ticket. So I don't see the relevance of your exception.
No they aren't. Movie theaters are private property. The right to be there is conditional upon buying a ticket, and that comes with a bunch of conditions attached. Two completely different examples. See here for some applicable court cases.
  #34  
Old 09-20-2019, 01:09 PM
Slow Moving Vehicle's Avatar
Slow Moving Vehicle is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Posts: 4,029
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shodan View Post
This. What is the compelling public interest for limiting speech at all, in any part of the park? Because (some) people don't want to hear it? It's a public space - freedom of speech applies to all public spaces.

If atheists want to try to convince me that there is no God in a public park, feel free. I will either engage, or not, depending on how I feel. If it crosses the line into harassment, and that is obviously going to be a gray area, that's one thing. Just having four atheists handing out leaflets asking me about the Flying Spaghetti Monster or the Invisible Pink Unicorn is another.

If they are not letting tourists take pictures of the Cloud, that is interfering with other people's use of the park. Not letting Wheaton students proselytize is also interfering, and with a right that is a lot more important than tourism.

Regards,
Shodan
Agreed. Their right to proselytize is just as sacrosanct as my right to tell ‘em to fuck off.
__________________
“It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people.”
― Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Good Omens
  #35  
Old 09-20-2019, 01:14 PM
Inigo Montoya's Avatar
Inigo Montoya is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: On the level, if inclined
Posts: 16,147
Quote:
Originally Posted by HurricaneDitka View Post
This, exactly. WTF are you guys (looking specifically at Inigo and silenus) thinking? Are you really so short-sighted that you can't see the myriad ways your attitude, if adopted more broadly, is going to backfire spectacularly on you?
Discouraging people from soliciting for cults that seek to scam and control their minds and bodies is a bad thing? Nope. Not seeing the downside at all. We can be all fluffy and philosophical and pretend to draw comparisons, but it is a time-proven fact that a religion that has to be sold is no religion. Maybe we need a different thread for this.
  #36  
Old 09-20-2019, 01:39 PM
Shodan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Milky Way Galaxy
Posts: 39,990
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inigo Montoya View Post
Discouraging people from soliciting for cults that seek to scam and control their minds and bodies is a bad thing? Nope. Not seeing the downside at all. We can be all fluffy and philosophical and pretend to draw comparisons, but it is a time-proven fact that a religion that has to be sold is no religion. Maybe we need a different thread for this.
Maybe I didn't make the point clearly.

There is that law finding it illegal to make speech that is deliberately annoying. You mention that pointing out the flaws of the Trump administration is annoying. Therefore, someone pointing out the flaws of the Trump administration in that park would be breaking the law, just as much as the Wheaton students. Do you see a downside there?

And I don't think it helps to say "they wouldn't do that because I am right". Trump is in the White House, the GOP controls the Senate, and liberals do not control the Supreme Court. What makes you think that they are going to go along with what you think is right?

Regards,
Shodan
  #37  
Old 09-20-2019, 01:47 PM
Inigo Montoya's Avatar
Inigo Montoya is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: On the level, if inclined
Posts: 16,147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shodan View Post
You mention that pointing out the flaws of the Trump administration is annoying. Therefore, someone pointing out the flaws of the Trump administration in that park would be breaking the law, just as much as the Wheaton students.
Read what I wrote again for comprehension, or at least drop your word-twisting schtick. I have no problem with being annoyed (although I find it annoying). I have a problem with allowing conmen to operate freely, disingenuously claiming 1st amendment protection.
  #38  
Old 09-20-2019, 02:07 PM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
There is also a substantive difference between publicly declaiming from a street corner and personally assaulting and insulting someone.
  #39  
Old 09-20-2019, 03:19 PM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
I don't know why someone felt the need to make this thread about Trump, but - well, folk can post what they want.

I'm wondering about government rights to restrict all manner of speech in public spaces. I'm not sure as to the specific status of Arlington Nat'l Cemetery- I seem to recall driving right in, but I can imagine there are some rules about "showing respect" or somesuch. But why SHOULDN'T someone be able to loudly proclaim that the Tomb of the Unknown glorifies the military?

I wonder what kinds of restrictions apply in national parks.

I'm trying to come up with other public spaces in which all manner of peaceful speech ought not be allowed - subject to reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions.

Yeah, the Bean is pretty neat, and is a major photo opportunity - but this far lefty is having a hard time thinking why bible-thumpers, war protesters, political advocates, or anyone else ought not be allowed to annoy people - ahem, spread their message - where the people are. Doesn't make much sense to allow the speech only where it won't be heard (thinking of the protest corrals at the political conventions.)
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #40  
Old 09-20-2019, 03:24 PM
enalzi is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 8,183
Just for clarification, because I had a hard time actually finding it, here are the new rules (bolding mine):
Quote:
3. Millennium Park is divided into several outdoor “rooms,” each with its own
purpose or art. These rooms are: the Jay Pritzker Pavilion and the Great
Lawn; the Lurie Garden; Cloud Gate Plaza; Chase Promenade North; Chase
Promenade Central; Chase Promenade South; Boeing Gallery North; Boeing
Gallery South; Wrigley Square and Millennium Park Monument; McCormick
Tribune Plaza and Ice Rink; and Crown Fountain. Sidewalks surround
Millennium Park and connect to sidewalks within the Park, which connect the
rooms but are not part of the rooms. The making of speeches and the passing
out of written communications
shall be restricted to Wrigley Square and
Millennium Park Monument and the sidewalks in and around the Park, though
closed sidewalks, whether for an event or another reason. shall not be
available for this purpose.
By my calculation, the "free speech zone" on the sidewalk is a whole 40 feet away form the Bean.
  #41  
Old 09-20-2019, 03:32 PM
mjmlabs's Avatar
mjmlabs is online now
A Rather Dubious Fellow Indeed
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: The Last Green Valley
Posts: 445
Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Nemo View Post
Movie theaters are open to anyone who wishes to enter them. And I specifically said the speaker bought a ticket. So I don't see the relevance of your exception.
How unfortunate. Bless your heart, it can't be easy. Perhaps if you set and think fer a while, some pertinent differences between a public park and a movie theater will present themselves.

In any event, without regard to the sincerity of your remark, I find this dialogue less than promising. Good day, Madam or Sir or otherwise, as the case may be.
  #42  
Old 09-20-2019, 03:41 PM
eschrodinger's Avatar
eschrodinger is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 190
I'm generally not in agreement with creating "free speech spaces" with the intention of all other areas then not permitting free speech, in public spaces like parks, sidewalks, etc. I'm not sure it works to say, here is where you may speak freely, away from where all the people tend to go.

I don't like being accosted either, but I value free speech more. There may be exceptions when opposing groups need to be kept apart, but that is not what is described in the OP.
  #43  
Old 09-20-2019, 03:43 PM
Shodan is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Milky Way Galaxy
Posts: 39,990
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inigo Montoya View Post
Read what I wrote again for comprehension, or at least drop your word-twisting schtick. I have no problem with being annoyed (although I find it annoying). I have a problem with allowing conmen to operate freely, disingenuously claiming 1st amendment protection.
The problem being in your apparent confidence that the Supreme Court will agree with your definition of who is a con man.

That's much of the other point I was trying to make above - you would like to allow the government to impose content-based censorship. I do not believe they should be allowed to do so, because I don't think they should get to decide.

You don't like religion - that's your right. The Wheaton students do like it - that's their right. The current make up of the Senate, White House, and Supreme Court do not suggest that they are likely to decide your way, if they get to pick.

Regards,
Shodan
  #44  
Old 09-20-2019, 05:43 PM
Hari Seldon is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Trantor
Posts: 13,067
There have to be limits. Suppose someone set up a loudspeaker outside your house (but on the public sidewalk) blaring some cause at 100Db. Clearly you have to draw a line somewhere and the question is where. If all they do is pass out pamphlets I see no harm. That's what wastebaskets are for. But if they assault you (no battery) that is a no-no. Obviously, shouting fire in a theater is another. So where to draw the line. What about advocating violent overthrow of the government? I just don't know, but I think I have a right to a peaceful day in a public park.

Very interesting thread.
  #45  
Old 09-20-2019, 06:19 PM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
Advocating violent overthrow would come under Schenk v US. That's the whole "clear and present danger" thing.
  #46  
Old 09-20-2019, 06:25 PM
eschrodinger's Avatar
eschrodinger is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 190
Quote:
Originally Posted by silenus View Post
Advocating violent overthrow would come under Schenk v US. That's the whole "clear and present danger" thing.
Which was replaced in 1969 by the "imminent lawless action" standard in Brandenburg v. Ohio, right?
  #47  
Old 09-20-2019, 06:43 PM
silenus's Avatar
silenus is offline
Isaiah 1:15/Screw the NRA
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: SoCal
Posts: 51,649
Correct. Since Hari wasn't specific on the advocating, it will remain a nebulous question. Although one could assume that any speech made to a general audience would meet the standard of "Likely to incite or produce a lawless action."

Last edited by silenus; 09-20-2019 at 06:44 PM.
  #48  
Old 09-20-2019, 07:47 PM
Dinsdale is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 18,738
Quote:
Originally Posted by eschrodinger View Post
...
I don't like being accosted either, but I value free speech more. ...
Yeah - that brings up another of my highest personal values - privacy - in all its forms. Which includes not being hassled. Which probably comes to bear in this specific situation.

Yeah - I know, if I don't want to encounter other people, don't leave my home. Just explaining some of my personal conflict here. I'm happy to nod, smile, and exchange greetings with passersby, but I generally don't try to inform strangers of my political/religious views, and my preference would be that they not do the same.

I can imagine all manner of restrictions in this park that I would support. No amplified devices. No posters/banners exceeding a certain size. No staying in one place for longer than a certain time (which would apply to plain-old tourists as well.) No static installations - platforms, lecterns, chairs, etc.

But someone simply expressing their views in a conversational tone and offering pieces of paper in a public park, not in a manner that interferes with a performance or event? As much as I detest such people and their actions (which anyone can certainly consider irrational on my part), I'm having a hard time differentiating that from someone asking the time, or for directions.
__________________
I used to be disgusted.
Now I try to be amused.
  #49  
Old 09-20-2019, 09:02 PM
CelticKnot is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: BackHome again in Indiana
Posts: 1,077
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inigo Montoya View Post
Read what I wrote again for comprehension, or at least drop your word-twisting schtick. I have no problem with being annoyed (although I find it annoying). I have a problem with allowing conmen to operate freely, disingenuously claiming 1st amendment protection.

Is everyone you disagree with a con man, or do you reserve that only for Evangelicals? If you have ever been conned by someone claiming to be a Christian did you press charges?
You are entitled to your opinion, but you have no right to impose your opinion on others by demanding their silence in a public place because you don't like the message.
  #50  
Old 09-21-2019, 08:50 AM
Annie-Xmas is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: New Jersey
Posts: 56,516
I've seen and heard the things the radical religious people say and do to the people going into the Women's Health Center. I've seen the women tell them "No, leave me alone" only to have them continue to get in their faces and even chase them down the sidewalk.

Yes, you have the right to your ideas and free speech, but when people say NO, leave them alone.
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:09 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright © 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017