Sometimes, I’m really quite the talented prognosticator. Back in October, I suggested that the Snyder v. Phelps case, involving this so-called religionist protesting at the funerals of American soldiers killed in action would be decided 8-1 or 7-2 in favor of Phelps, and it was 8-1 in Phelps’ favor. Again, I think it was the right decision constitutionally; indeed, if it had gone the other way, one could reasonably complain about the Court making law. Do not, though, confuse my First Amendment backing for the SOBs with any kind of theological support. In fact, that handful of inbreed charlatans, like the Florida pastor/rube last year who threatened to burn the Koran, represent such a small segment of theological thought that it’s painful to come to their defense in any way. Nuance sucks.
Yet, I’m reminded of a just as repugnant SCOTUS case, involving a band of Nazi sympathizers wanting to march in Skokie, Illinois. The Supreme Court refused to review the lower court ruling allowing the assembly; ultimately, the march did take place, albeit not in Skokie.
So where should government draw the line regarding free expression? I’m particularly interested in opinions of those living outside of the United States, and thus without First Amendment traditions.
And sometimes, I’m a lousy prognosticator. My NCAA men’s basketball picks were SO awful that I haven’t even checked them since the first weekend. I had Pitt, who lost in the second round, in the finals, which should give you some idea.