Can you say 9-0!
The buffer zones serve the Commonwealth’s legitimate interests in maintaining public safety on streets and sidewalks and in preserving access to adjacent reproductive healthcare facilities. See Schenck v. Pro-Choice Network of Western N. Y., 519 U. S. 357, 376.
At the same time, however, they impose serious burdens on petitioners’ speech, depriving them of their two primary methods of communicating with arriving patients: close, personal conversations and distribution of literature. Those forms of expression have historically been closely associated with the transmission of ideas.
While the Act may allow petitioners to “protest” outside the buffer zones, petitioners are not protestors; they seek not merely to express their opposition to abortion, but to engage in personal, caring, consensual conversations with women about various alternatives. It is thus no answer to say that petitioners can still be seen and heard by women within the buffer zones. If all that the women can see and hear are vociferous opponents of abortion, then the buffer zones have effectively sti
fled petitioners’ message.
As for the Commonwealth’s arguments about safety & overcrowding:
The Commonwealth has not shown that it seriously undertook to address these various problems with the less intrusive tools readily available to it. It identifies not a single prosecution or injunction against individuals outside abortion clinics since the 1990s. The Commonwealth responds that the problems are too widespread for individual prosecutions and injunctions to be effective. But again, the record indicates that the problems are limited principally to the Boston clinic on Saturday mornings, and the police there appear perfectly capable of singling out lawbreakers.
But this law was never about lawbreakers, it was about silencing foes of abortion trying to save both the lives of children & the souls of their mothers.
Massachusetts being Massachusetts and the Democrats with a 100+ majority in the house and a 36-4 advantage in the senate I expect a new buffer zone law will be passed in record time.
But for now this three point line is gone!
Now you’ll have to excuse me I going to go to Worcester and exercise my constitutional rights.
Update: I have some videos from my trip to Worcester
and shot this video:
To my surprise there were no other protesters there but I understand there were people there in the morning (as always) but left before 10 (as always)
I’d like to quote one of the most basic common sense lines from the opinion syllabus:
In any event, to determine whether someone intends to block access to a clinic, a police officer need only order him to move; if he refuses, then there is no question that his continued conduct is knowing or intentional.
Just go up and ask? That’s the most exciting new idea I’ve heard in years!
My real fear is that the Problem pregnancy center will get attacked again. They have a better camera system that before so hopefully if anyone tries that they will be nailed.
Update 3: The rage and anger of the “let us kill your baby” left is really something.