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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Community Comment

Free speech in Brigham City, Utah…


Good evening, Netizens...


Suffice it to say I have lived a portion of my life among various cults, including the Moonies and I include members of the Mormon religion among these groups. I would probably keep my opinion of their religion to myself were it not for Mitt Romney, a Mormon, who is dangerously close to becoming the next President of the United States, an event that I am diametrically opposed to. In the meantime we have the following news story from Brigham City, Utah on the Associated Press wire that bears some considerable thought:


BRIGHAM CITY, Utah (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union of Utah is suing the town of Brigham City, claiming it is squelching a non-denominational Christian church's free speech by limiting flier distribution near a Mormon temple.

Leaders of Main Street Church say they got a city permit to pass out literature during the temple's open house Aug. 18 to Sept. 15, but have been barred from staking out the two busiest sides of the building.

 "The overbreadth of Brigham City's 'Free Speech Zone' Ordinance is breathtaking," said John Mejia, legal director of the ACLU of Utah. "Under this ordinance, you would arguably have to apply for a permit to engage in nearly any speech in the city. The ordinance could be used to silence anyone, from two friends debating politics on the sidewalk to a missionary handing out fliers."

A court hearing on the suit is set for Friday morning.

I can hardly wait to see who the Spokesman-Review recommends during the run-up to the Presidential election. As I have stated earlier, this upcoming election is both fascinating and frightening, depending upon which way the citizenry vote. From what I have read about the rules in Brigham City, Utah, it does seem as if you need a city-issued permit to hold a public gathering anywhere in their town, not just in front of the Mormon Temple. Of course your opinion(s) of such an ordinance may differ. Can they even do that? It depends, I guess, upon how well you are connected to the Mormon Church.


Spokesman-Review readers blog about news and issues in Spokane written by Dave Laird.