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  • Street preacher questions

    Well since you guys were so helpful last time (honestly). I am hoping for the same about another issue i have. Here are a few videos of some street preachers being arrested. I am not here to say look what officers are doing wrong. That is not my mission here as I have a high respect for what you guys do. What i am wondering is what did these guys do wrong to get arrested. And how could these guys best avoid being arrested again.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ggfcS4mqmCs



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3MA3ue7ocE



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtTVq6qa13I



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bK16xxjzXyI


  • #2
    Why do I suspect an agenda here? "Preaching the Gospel" in these instances has to do with venue, public egress, local ordinances and a host of issues. What could the "preachers" have done to avoid arrest? That's simple. Obey the law.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by PhilipCal View Post
      Why do I suspect an agenda here? "Preaching the Gospel" in these instances has to do with venue, public egress, local ordinances and a host of issues. What could the "preachers" have done to avoid arrest? That's simple. Obey the law.
      + 1

      Had an issue about 10 years ago, blocking sidewalk traffic and highway traffic. Warned about the consequences and he took the advice. Good for everyone.
      It's not the will to win that matters...everyone has that. It's the will to prepare to win that matters.
      Paul "Bear" Bryant

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      • #4
        It's impossible to answer your question without reading the arrest report in each instance.

        Generally speaking, under the first amendment the government cannot restrict the content of free speech. However, the courts have ruled for years that under certain circumstances, government agencies may regulate free expression activity in order to prevent conduct which has the potential to disrupt government services, create a health or safety hazard, or interfere with the free movement or free expression rights of others.

        To this end, the courts have also ruled that under certain circumstances, government agencies are authorized to require permits for free expression activity and may regulate the time, location and manner in which the activity is conducted. Failure to comply may result in arrest. There's no police harassment if someone conducts an activity without a required permit, or violate the permit's terms, or if their activity disrupts government services, creates a health or safety hazard, or interferes with the free movement or free expression rights of others.
        Going too far is half the pleasure of not getting anywhere

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        • #5
          Yeah.. I'm sure they didn't post that portion of the video on you tube because it would incriminate them - you know, the part where they said what they actually got arrested for.

          They keep saying they are being arrested for preaching the gospel.. but I haven't heard one Gospel verse in any of these videos. I've heard contempt for the law, contempt for the police, and a rather colorful comparison of Law Enforcement to Hitler.

          All of these events appear to have taken place on private property where they were asked to leave or on public streets where organizations have been given permits to assemble and hold their events. If they had requested the same permits and were holding a street fair and a dozen people came up with "JESUS SUCKS" signs.... you bet your behind they'd be the first one on the phone with 9-1-1 yelling and screaming and carrying on. And like they were removed from other events, those 12 would be removed from their event in the interests of preserving the peace.

          Some of the patrons at these events were clearly ready to get physical with these guys. Their speech, although what they are saying itself is protected, was inviting breaches of the peace. To resolve that... simple requests were made (move 2 blocks down, move to this curb and let them have their event). Instead of respecting the rights of others, though - these guys want to play games and clip video for youtube.

          If this was only about religion.. they wouldn't need the video camera, attorneys on retainer, and they would respect other people.

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          • #6
            There is nothing wrong with preaching on the sidewalk or at a public event. But once you start disturbing the peace and tranquility of the general public then your playing a different game. (key words: disturbing, peace, and tranquility)

            I only watched most of the 3rd video. I agree with the officers arrest based off what the officer was telling the suspects and the earlier reaction of one of the ticked off parents. Police were getting numerous complaints from citizens that the suspects were being to loud, graphic, and agressively approaching people trying to shove religion down their throats. It was disturbing people who were trying to enjoy the festivities. That officer gave the suspects more warnings then they deserved.
            Last edited by DeputySC; 10-02-2010, 04:25 PM.

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            • #7
              These men were not arrested for Preaching the Gospel. They were arrested for breaking a number of laws (tresspassing, disorderly conduct, failure to obey lawful order) Then add resisiting arrest. I have no problem with someone preaching the gospel. I am a Christian and believe in spreading the word. However, there are appropriate ways to go about this. I dont pretend to fully know the mind of God, but I really dont think He wants us to break the law to spread his word. I also noticed the confrontational attitude of one of the men displaying itself loud and clear. I think if the men preaching would have been respectful and obeyed the officers' directions, it would have been more of a positive witness than their attempts to "spread the word" vocally (actions speak louder than words). It's unfortunate that a group trying to do the right thing got mixed up in a situation like this, but they brought it on themselves.
              John 3:16

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              • #8
                The best way to look at things is this:

                Before you do something, understand that you have the right to do anything you want to do, as long as it doesn't infringe upon another person's right. If you think about the foundation of our Country, that one rule makes a lot of sense.

                Your rights do not trump the rights of others.

                -V

                EDIT: Perfect example. You have the right to free speech, but that does not mean that you can stand on a downtown sidewalk at noon and scream over and over again at the top of your lungs, thereby disrupting other people's lives. Common sense is the golden rule.
                Last edited by vincelli; 10-03-2010, 05:19 AM.

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