McDaniel joins court filing in funeral protest case
LITTLE ROCK — State Attorney General Dustin McDaniel said today he has joined with other attorneys general in a court filing in support of protecting grieving families from “offensive” protests at military funerals.
McDaniel and 48 other attorneys general joined in an amicus brief filed today with the U.S. Supreme Court in the case Snyder v. Phelps. The family of Marine Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder of Maryland is appealing a 4th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals decision that protests at Snyder’s funeral by Fred Phelps Sr.’s Westboro Baptist Church were constitutionally protected.
Members of the church have protested at the funerals of a number of American soldiers, claiming that the soldiers’ deaths are the result of God’s wrath over the acceptance of homosexuality. “Thank God for dead soldiers” is a typical message seen on church members’ picket signs.
Okay, so far so good. That makes 48 State AGs who have joined the case.
BUT according to Volokh Conspiracy blog their brief filed w/the Supreme Court makes this claim:
“No decision of [the Supreme] Court has ever exempted a non-media defendant from generally applicable state tort law on First Amendment grounds.
I don’t recall anything in the First Amendment separating citizens into media and non-media classes.