Monday, February 22, 2016

Florida Police Let Abortionists Prohibit Prayer

After a challenge from pro-life lawyers, police in Hollywood, Florida now claim they never told Christians that the government would support attempts by the local abortion clinic to force eviction of praying pro-lifers from the public sidewalk at the clinic.
"It's not loud prayer. It's simply praying for the unborn child and for women."
-- John Hickey, Volunteer, 40 Days for Life Hollywood
For background, read Maine Sues Pastor for Preaching Too Loud on Abortion, but Court Orders Portland, Maine to Pay $56,500 for Muzzling Pro-lifer

Also read U.S. Supreme Court Rules Unanimously that Christians are Free to Speak near Abortion Clinics

Click headlines below to read previous articles:

Christians Arrested for Praying Too Loud Near Chicago Abortion Clinic

Pastor's Wife Fined for Praying Too Loud in North Dakota

California Law Forces Abortion Business on Pro-lifers

Also read Pro-lifers March on Washington, D.C. Amid Government Shutdown

And read how public schools across America muzzle pro-life students and ban pro-life student clubs.

-- From "Antiabortion Protesters Say Hollywood Police Violated Their Constitutional Rights" by Jerry Iannelli, New Times Broward-Palm Beach 2/22/16

Representatives from Hollywood, Florida's 40 Days for Life chapter say that five times over the past three years, the group has, successfully and without incident, held prayer vigils outside A Woman's Center of Hollywood, an abortion provider located on Hollywood Boulevard. During such vigils, group members pray and try to educate women about alternatives to abortion.

But on February 10, three group members claim, a Hollywood Police officer ordered them off a sidewalk, violating their constitutional rights of free speech and assembly. While they are now demanding an apology from the police department, the department claims the protesters had actually been trespassing on private property.

. . . The group provided documentation that shows it applied for a permit to assemble outside the center from February 10 to March 20.

The group says three or four people were praying outside the center for 12 hours a day, each day.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Florida police block pro-life peaceful protest at abortion clinic, Thomas More Society responds" posted at The Global Dispatch 2/19/16

Thomas More Society attorneys have sent a letter to the City of Hollywood, Florida, and the Hollywood Police Department challenging a police officer’s recent order forbidding pro-lifers from standing on a public sidewalk in front of a clinic that performs abortions, apparently at the clinic’s request. On the first day of the Spring 40 Days for Life prayer vigil outside A Woman’s Center of Hollywood abortion facility, Officer Del Castillo of the Hollywood Police Department told pro-life volunteers that they could not stand on the public sidewalk in front of the abortion clinic. Thomas More Society contends that this demand is a blatant violation of the pro-lifers’ First Amendment rights.

This is the third year that volunteers participating in the 40 Days for Life Hollywood prayer vigils have had a peaceful presence on the public property – including both the sidewalk and swale (grassy area between the street and sidewalk) – outside A Woman’s Center. However, last week, on the first day of this years’ campaign, Officer Del Castillo of the Hollywood Police Department told the pro-lifers that they could not stand on the public sidewalk because the clinic had said they did not want the pro-lifers there.  He stated that the abortion clinic has the right to determine who may and may not stand on the sidewalk in front of its building.  He implied that if this order was not obeyed, pro-lifers could be ticketed.

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

From "Thomas More Society Challenges Public Sidewalk Restriction at Abortion Clinic" posted at Christian Newswire 2/17/16

"Forbidding pro-lifers from standing on public property violates 75 years of clear Supreme Court precedent that gives broad protections to those engaging in free speech in public places," said Corrina Konczal, Thomas More Society Associate Counsel. "We are confident that, once the city and Chief of Police are made aware of this officer's unconstitutional ban, that they will reverse this order and assure our clients of their rights to publicly pray and hold signs on any sidewalk in the city."

. . . The attorneys' missive notes specifically that "Officer Del Castillo's order is a clearly unconstitutional restriction of our clients' freedom of speech in a traditional public forum – a public sidewalk." The letter requests a response from the city and police department by this Friday.

"We should not be banned from the public sidewalk just because we're pro-life," said John Hickey, a 40 Days for Life Hollywood volunteer. "We're exercising our First Amendment rights by holding a peaceful prayer vigil to help women and unborn children. Hopefully, Officer Del Castillo's supervisors will reverse his incorrect order so that our free speech will be respected for the rest of the 40 Days vigil."

To read the entire article above, CLICK HERE.

Also read Federal Judge Censors Pro-life Ads on Indiana Buses

And read Oregon Woman Fired for Being Pro-life Leader