Thursday, January 30, 2014

Free to post court official pics

The Wash. Post reports:
A D.C. Superior Court judge ruled Tuesday that a convicted sex offender can distribute and post photos of court employees online to protest the city’s sex offender registry

Dennis Sobin, a former pornographer who served more than a decade in prison for a sexual performance using a minor, posted the photos of employees from D.C.’s Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency (CSOSA) on saying that sex-offender registries are unfair. A court employee filed for a civil protection order, accused him of stalking and asked the court to have Sobin to remove her photo.

But Judge Todd E. Edelman said that Sobin’s actions were protected by the First Amendment.
Dan Brewington went to prison for posting gripes about the court officials who had unfairly taken his kids away.

I don't have any opinion about this guy being on the sex offender registry, but I do think that he has a free speech right to make fun of the govt officials who are harassing him.

Meanwhile the federal appeals court for California and other western states ruled against free speech about gays. In Pickup v. Brown and Welch v. Brown upheld a California law requiring psychotherapists to give pro-LGBT messages to minors. The court said:
Dissenting from the denial of rehearing en banc, Judge O’Scannlain, joined by Judges Bea and Ikuta stated that by defining disfavored speech as “conduct,” the panel’s opinion entirely exempted California’s regulation from the First Amendment. Judge O’Scannlain stated that in so doing, the panel contravened recent Supreme Court precedent, ignored established free speech doctrine, misread Ninth Circuit cases, and thus insulated from First Amendment scrutiny California’s prohibition — in the guise of a professional regulation — of politically unpopular expression.
So you could naively take your kid to a psychotherapist who might encourage him to become gay out of fear that telling the truth could jeopardize the shrink's license. Our lawmakers and courts have decided that promoting an LGBTQIA agenda is more important than preserving free speech in a professional setting.

The majority opinion cited their 2005 opinion saying:
In sum, we affirm that the Meyer-Pierce right does not extend beyond the threshold of the school door.   The parents' asserted right “to control the upbringing of their children by introducing them to matters of and relating to sex in accordance with their personal and religious values and beliefs,” by which they mean the right to limit what public schools or other state actors may tell their children regarding sexual matters, is not encompassed within the Meyer-Pierce right to control their children's upbringing and education.   Accordingly, Meyer-Pierce provides no basis for finding a substantive due process right that could have been violated by the defendants' authorization and administration of the survey.
After some criticism of such a narrow view of parental constitutional right, the judges amended their opinion in 2006, but I guess they still like the emphatic denial of parental rights in the 2005 opinion.

1 comment:

Dan Brewington said...

Thanks for bringing this to my attention. Going on five months for the IN Supreme Court to figure out if calling a judge a child abuser is against the law.