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Court backs SNAP, overturns Missouri law against disrupting church services

March 11, 2015

Overturning a lower court decision and siding with the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, the US 8th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that Missouri’s House of Worship Protection Act violates the constitutional right to free speech.

The 2012 law states that “a person commits the crime of disrupting a house of worship if such person intentionally and unreasonably disturbs, interrupts, or disquiets any house of worship by using profane discourse, rude or indecent behavior, or making noise either within the house of worship or so near it as to disturb the order and solemnity of the worship services.”


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  • Posted by: Chestertonian - Mar. 12, 2015 12:17 AM ET USA

    What illogic! If this is free speech, then I should be able to traipse into the 8th Circuit Court and disrupt their session in the very same manner. What are the chances they'd allow it? This is also akin to saying that we may now be allowed to yell "Fire!" in a theater. Obviously, we've seated inmates on the bench of the asylum.

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Mar. 11, 2015 10:54 PM ET USA

    This gives SNAP and all the other leftist, anti-Catholic groups carte blanche to raise cain whenever they want. Their ultimate goal is to destroy the Church. God forgive and heal them.

  • Posted by: Savanarola - Mar. 11, 2015 8:58 PM ET USA

    So, I have a right to go onto someone else's property and say whatever I like. Good to know. Watch for this to be overturned.

  • Posted by: [email protected] - Mar. 11, 2015 6:47 PM ET USA

    Wow! 8th Circuit puts a hierarchy of rights. SNAP's rights are more important than everyone else in a particular Church. Perhaps when they are thrown out they will get the point there are other ways to get their point across.

  • Posted by: rjbennett1294 - Mar. 11, 2015 5:56 PM ET USA

    "(T)he US 8th Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled that Missouri’s House of Worship Protection Act violates the constitutional right to free speech." Dear Lord, surely the court isn't serious. Is it?

  • Posted by: bernie4871 - Mar. 11, 2015 2:56 PM ET USA

    A house of worship is an extension of your own home!!! Wonder who appointed the Judge.

  • Posted by: garedawg - Mar. 11, 2015 10:26 AM ET USA

    So, if I were at a concert, and during a quiet part I stood up and started yelling, then those in charge could not call security and have me escorted out?

  • Posted by: Hennepin - Mar. 11, 2015 9:49 AM ET USA

    Do you think the ruling would have been the same if the disruption had happened in a mosque?