The City of Harrisonburg, Virginia filed criminal charges against The Valley Church of Christ of Harrisonburg for displaying the pro-life sign shown below on the church’s own lawn.
The specific reason cited is that the City of Harrisonburg, Virginia has a law that prevents large signs from being displayed on property.
Since several car washes and businesses had much larger signs on tarps hung up in the same manner on their own private property just as the Church did, but none of those other businesses were targeted by the City with criminal charges, it is clear that the Valley Church of Christ of Harrisonburg was targeted solely because their sign displayed a pro-life message which is a message in direct opposition to United States Law which mandates the right of a woman to murder her unborn child if the child is within a certain age range within the womb.
To protect its members from being charged as criminals and put in jail, the church was forced to incur the assistance of an attorney. The costs of retaining a lawyer can cost as much as $20,000 dollars or more depending on the amount of time the lawyer must spend working on the case.
The Rutherford Institute provided the church with legal assistance and once that happened, the city all of a sudden, mysteriously withdrew the criminal charges.
While the withdrawal of the criminal charges is good, its actually bad because it doesn’t allow the court to hear the case and issue a decision that says the government is not allowed to attack pro-life speech.
The absence of such a court decision means that governments can continue to assault pro-life speech using the exact same method forcing churches to spend thousands of dollars for legal assistance defending against those who are seeking to silence pro-life speech from public sight.
However it also protects the church from a court whose members may believe that the US Law which requires that women be allowed to kill their unborn children if they so desire, is a just law, and stop such a court from issuing a decision that chips away at free speech because the perpetrators of infanticide do not want the fact they are murders to be put in their face, lest they feel guilty.
With free speech under constant assault in America the fact that our nation’s own Constitution guarantees free speech is not a given since liberal groups want to create a new class of speech called “hate speech” as a means of censoring ideas that are offensive to liberals.
We need to keep adding court decision after decision that affirms free speech into our legal arsenal so it becomes more difficult for liberals to eliminate freedom of speech by introducing various forms of hate speech legislation.
Right now, the Left will use any method they can to silence Christian speech. In this case they tried to use a local law about signs. But they don’t enforce the law consistently, they only went after the church.
Calling abortion what it is, which is murdering a child while the child lives in its mothers womb, is viewed as hate speech by these liberal groups and they want to prevent churches from being able to teach the public what abortion really is.