Over to you | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Over to you

Posted By on Thu, Oct 7, 2010 at 4:33 PM

The Thursday night line is open.

NEWS NOTE: The U.S. attorney in Little Rock has announced the indictment of Forrest City attorney Michael Easley and an employee, Marie Douglas, for Social Security fraud for his payment of a $100,000 bonus to her in a way that wouldn't prevent her from drawing Social Security disability payments. She was paid the money for her work in assisting with significant settlements in lawsuits over ill effects of the diet drug Fen-Phen. U.S. Attorney Jane Duke said a practicing attorney should have known that it was wrong to hide her income.

ALSO: Richard Land, the so-called "ethicist" for the Southern Baptist Convention, has never before in my memory made an utterance I agreed with. Today, he did. His news release:

Dr. Richard Land, president of the Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, commented today on the current U.S. Supreme Court case between Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan. and family members of the deceased Marine Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder (Snyder v. Phelps). Westboro Baptist Church is not affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention.

“This is a terrible case; bad cases make for bad law and bad precedent. What the Westboro Baptist Church does is odious and despicable. In exercising their free-speech right to insult the memory and bring further emotional harm to loved ones of fallen heroes, they are engaging in disgraceful behavior. I cannot imagine how I would feel if I were a father grieving a son who was killed defending our freedoms and I had to listen to the taunts and see the insulting signs and placards of Westboro Baptist Church; it would be rubbing salt in a raw wound.

“My heart tells me they should be outlawed from doing this; however, my head tells me that anytime we allow the government to restrict religious speech and activity for any reason, we are setting a very dangerous precedent and we are embarking on a steep and slippery slope to dark and dangerous places. What government is allowed to do to Westboro Baptist Church today, they could be allowed to do to other religious groups tomorrow or the day after. We should all pray God will give his divine wisdom to the Supreme Court justices as they wrestle with this difficult and thorny issue.”

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