A Defeat for Free Speech, a Victory for Property Rights, or Just a Sign That You've Hired Too Many Security Guards?

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Reader James Hannon passes along this story, which he describes as "significantly absurd."

Update: Eugene Volokh notes that there may be more to the case than initial reports suggested. And Todd Morman points out that there may be even more to it than that.

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  1. I have a real problem with “Private” public places.

    I hope this goes all the way to the Supreme Court on the grounds that a
    shopping mall, while privately owned, is *NOT* a private place, and
    therefore must accommodate public rights – even when inconvenient.

    If I want, I can prevent anyone from entering my house, but you can’t keep
    minorities, or handicapped people out of malls.

    The behavior of law enforcement in this case was un-American and
    unconstitutional.

    I have a similar complaint with privately operated chat rooms and bulletin
    boards.

    I once got kicked off of a BBS for voicing my opinion on abortion (nothing
    big, just one sentence) after the SysOp mandated that “Abortion will not be
    discussed on MY board!” Such is the idiocy of Zero Tolerance.

    I would argue that as long as I don’t have to pay to become a member to
    enter, then they have no control over my civil activities protected by the
    constitution.

    By requiring membership, it is no longer a public place, and the person can
    have their membership revoked “for any reason” and removed from the
    premises.

    After all, it works for the Agusta Golf Club.

  2. Let’s see — somebody provided you with a service, a BBS, for personal or advertising reasons, whatever, but they allowed you to access their BBS, and you repaid their kindness by posting something you had been specifically requested not to post. And you’re annoyed because they kicked your butt out?

    I don’t charge people to come into my house when I have a party, but if somebody kicks my dog or pees in the planter I’m going to kick them out, too. Charging admission has NOTHING to do with it.

    Are you such a self-centered jerk that you think others should be forced to provide you with free electronic billboards for your rantings with no conditions whatsoever attached? Or that the proprietors of a shopping center should be forced to allow any mannerless buffon access to rant no matter how many customers are scared off? Freedom of speech does not mean you get to force others to listen or provide you with a venue.

  3. Here is the address of the City Manager. Their web site touts the town as “a wonderful place to reside.” For Fascists and Nazis maybe. Kenneth Runion,Town Supervisor
    runionk@townofguilderland.org

    What is it going to take before the American people rise up and and put a stop to these Nazis running our government. Where is the outrage?

  4. Jesse – GREAT POST

    Neb – I think you go too far in denying property rights (I don’t think you have ANY rights on someone elses BBS e.g.)

    I would very much like to agree with you that the Mall is a public place. And while I am a huge fan of freedom of speech, the constitution only prohibits congress from abridging it (the State of New York is not so constrained by the first amendment, as it is by the fifth). In this case free speech was thwarted on a trespassing pretext. I don’t think it will hold up in court. Could they refuse to allow Muslim women dressed in an abaya or burka in the mall? What about Klansmen in sheets? I would like to live where all of them were allowed. On the other hand, I don’t want the government to tell me how to run my business. If I want to enforce a dress code in order to appeal to a certain customer base isn’t that my right?

  5. I’ve seen this confusion played out on these types of blogs before – there is a distinction between private and public ‘repression’. The problem is that one person’s right is not a abolute, it has to be stopped when it breaches another person’s rights. My right to blather on about whatever opinions I have are limited by other’s rights not to have to listen to it. Private property, since it is owned by many individual actors and everyone has at least the legal opportunity to own some property, is the best way to settle conflicts over where one’s rights begin and the other ends. It is only the concept of ‘public spaces’ (whether owned by the government or by private individuals) that creates this conflict in the first place. When the government intervenes, it removes the option of private individuals seeking their own balances on said issues and creates mandates that violate someone’s rights, no matter what.

    I think that the leftists who usually argue over the necessity of considering privately owned business that in general are open to the public (the public with money to spend, anyway – try sitting in a restaurant for hours only drinking the free water and see how open they are to your presence) is that they feel without this ‘claim’ there would be no venue for political protest, especially if it is unpopular. Well, if it is unpopular do you think you have a right to foist it upon people who do not wish to hear it? You have the right to gain access to whatever private venues will allow you to use them for speech purposes. In any case I have not noticed a significant lack of ability for people to find places to voice their opinions publicly, no matter how unpopular, in news or print, TV, radio, the internet, on the premises of like-minded property owners, etc.

    Granted all voices do not get equal play, with some of the more popular views (or more heavily financed views) gaining the better opportunities. This is perhaps the other motivation for some to label private spaces as ‘public’ – a genuine egalitarianism or just the feeling that if the right messages just got enough exposure, they’d catch on. Truth is most of the population is aware of what they consider to be undesirable opinions and just doesn’t want to hear them. The right to speech does not have a corresponding right to a sufficient quantity of listeners.

    Private property is truly the only practical and principled way to settle an inherent conflict between the rights of people to express themselves and the rights of others not to be bothered with it. Speakers and their audiences are responsible for seeking each other out.

  6. “Humans can be just as tyrannized by corporations as they can by government.”

    Sigh. And humans can be tyrannized by grizzly bears too, what of it?

    Libertarians make a distinction between coercive action and cooperative action. When the government says do X or go to jail, that’s coercive. It’s coercive because force will be used if you disagree. Disagree enough and they’ll put a bullet in your head.

    When a corporation says do X, it’s within the context of their cooperative relationship with you to fire you if you say no. Now, you may not like their decision, but it was your own decision to go to work for them in the first place. You had no choice but to take the job because you’d starve to death otherwise? Well, there was likely SOME other way you can feed yourself, whereas when the government puts a bullet through your head, that it’s, no choices allowed.

    Now, if your corporate boss puts a gun to your head and says do X? Well, that’s a different story! (Unless he’s saying put your own gun down.) If someone in the corporation puts poison in your lunchbox? That’s a different story! The first principle of libertarianism is the non-initiation of force, whether that comes from government or from anyone else.

    As for the claim someone made that Lefterians would react differently if the trespasser had been wearing a KKK t-shirt, I would say that would depend on the Lefterian. Too bad our own dear Lefty hasn’t weighed in!

  7. In response to fyodor’s question… I’m the owner of a store, and I spoke with my local police aobut this the other day. All you have to do, as the owner or an agent of the owner of the property is to tell the police that “this person is not allowed on my property” in that person’s presence. You do that, the police put them on a list, and if that person shows up again, you acll the police and they’re carted off in handcuffs. That’s it. You don’t have to provide any sort of reason whatsoever, since it’s, well, private property.

  8. The Bill of Rights constrains government, not you and I. A government should never discriminate between one of it’s citizens and another – not by race (pro or con) or sex or religion or wealth or by any other criteria. But a private individual – or a private business – should have the right to discriminate on any basis they see fit.

  9. FYI — ” After all, poor old Joe has a right to a job and 7 kids to feed!”

    This part was sarcasm. I agree with fyodor for the most part.

  10. “A corporation can dump strichnine in the water or loot their shareholders with no personal liability of any kind. The worst that can happen is they get a civil penalty larger than the check the corporation can write. The actual people behind the corporate deed (say, Kenny Lay), though, go unpunished”

    As I’m fond of pointing out, it’s interesting what you have to believe to be a lefty. This is completely false. Anyone who ordered this action or who carried out such orders would be criminally liable. Incorporation protects individuals from civil liability, and not in all cases.

    As far as the lawyer & son, if they were interfering with other customers they deserve to be thrown out.

  11. Corporations had no rights under the constitution as it was written. The 14th amendment refers to “persons”. Over time the financial influence of the railroads won some court decisions affording them the rights of being a “person” even though they are only an idea, just like government. This, despite their numerous sovereign and corporate immunities that us ordinary schmucks don’t get.

    As for KKK t-shirts and other right wing speech, I say go for it. Everybody’s entitled to peacefully say or do anything they want. There is a social market place of taboos, mores and manners that takes care of all that if we’ll let it.

    Governments and corporations are not people, though, and should be watched and regulated like crazy or they will suck you dry.

  12. Spork:

    Don’t go waving your red flag of discrimination at me, I know what I said and anyone can read it above. (Or is your raising of the spectre of bigotry and/or ignorance as an argument merely “unknowing”?)

    Would you please direct me to anywhere within that passage where I mentioned anything but objectional BEHAVIOR – not race, not creed, not religion.

    And, BTW, if you did walk into a resturant, say a steakhouse, and started shouting “Meat Is Murder” and disrupting diners you should be thrown out — but note that that’s not a matter of being pitched for your creed, but for your actions. A Vegan who simply walked in, noted the lack of meatless entrees, and then quietly ordered a salad or left and took their business elsewhere wouldn’t get thrown out although they held the same creed. There would be no reason to throw them out.

    And I don’t know how race could enter into it, unless you think members of some racial groups are genetically unable to get along with others — which I don’t.

    Similarly, if a Baptist walked into a Mosque, or Moslem into a Jewish Temple, or a Hindu into a Baptist Church, and they started hassling and arguing with people about religion I would expect them to be thrown out. That isn’t religious discrimination, it’s just common sense — there’s a time and a place and that’s not it.

    Peace T-shirt guy may have been acosting shoppers by some reports and not just innocently walking around in a T-shirt. If he was — throw him out.

    Hey, it’s called manners. Civilized behavior. Nebs seems to think that other people (be they BBS sysops or mall stores) must provide a forum to all who want it, rules be damned. I say, if you don’t like the rules, you are free to go somewhere else or start your own.

    And if you go to the trouble of opening a store or mall or BBS or other business, you have a right to control access to your property so as to maintain a civilized atmosphere and do the business you’re there to do.

    Note that it might not be the best business decision to go around alienating people — bad PR — but that’s another matter.

  13. Lefty, thanks for the answer on the KKK. Good to know (finally) you have the right one!! I would remind skeptics on this thread that the ACLU, often identified with leftist views, is known for defending the free speech rights of the KKK!

    As for these “rights” of corporations, Lefty can you please specify what specific “rights” corporations have that you object to them having? I’m no expert, but I believe the rights granted by those court decisions you refer to are contractual rights. Do you object to that? Corporations don’t have the right to vote–*as* a corporation, that is. What is the actual problem here?? I have a lefty friend who bitched and moaned about this very same issue a few years ago, but I never hear him do it anymore since I asked him this same question. WHAT rights do corporations have that you object to?? Specificity, PLEASE!!

  14. >>This, despite their numerous sovereign and corporate immunities that us ordinary schmucks don’t get.>Everybody’s entitled to peacefully say or do anything they want>Governments and corporations are not people, though, and should be watched and regulated like crazy or they will suck you dry.

  15. In places like Albany, the only quasi-public gathering places left, where there are lots of people mingling within earshot of one another, are malls. So it’s not surprising that this lawyer chose to do his politicking there. I happen to agree that the mall owners have the right to decide who to allow into their premises or not, but I think it is a sad commentary on the built environment that Americans have chosen for themselves since the advent of the automobile obviated the need for traditional cities.

  16. fyodor, if I may. It’s not the rights of Corporations I object to. It is the fact that they have all the rights I have but none of the responsibilities of citizenship such as voting, or being subject to the draft or running for mayor or serving on a jury. Or paying taxes where they live or keeping the same set of books for the IRS I have to keep. They are amoral, have no conscience and no “being”.

    The one prime responsibility they have is a fiduciary one to there shareholders with absolutely no conflict in that area or they get in deep trouble.

    They can talk all that “good corporate citizen” shit they want but in the end their loyalty is to the shareholder, not to their community or their country.

  17. Lefty,

    Yow, so what you want is for corporations to be able to run for mayor???

    Look, corporations are organizations of PEOPLE, yes, real people do make up corporations. They’re only as responsible or irresponsible as the people who jointly own and run them.

    Having said that, I do have a hyopothesis that the more individuals who own a business, the more likely the goals of that business will be reduced to the one common denominator of maximizing profits. Of course, making money is a primary goal for most any individual and is usually a significant if not THE primary reason any individual starts a business. But all people have a variety of interests, and these are manifested in all of our lives, including in our money-making activities. But the more people that own a business, the more the varying interests of the various owners get canceled out in favor of the one goal that all the owners have in common, making money.

    Well, at least that’s my hypothesis. If I were a professor maybe I’d do research or experimentation to test it.

    But because of view on that, and because of corporations’ limited third party civil liability, I have little problem with corporate profits facing a higher tax rate through so-called double taxation. At least on ethical grounds.

    But as for “regulate them or they’ll suck you dry,” sheesh, look, describe a particular problem and we can discuss how to address it. Sure, the folks who frequent this blog have a particular POV on such matters, one which I largely share myself, but who knows, they/we may actually listen to you if you do something other than rail hysterically in generalities!!

    Regulations have their costs, and I’d say we’d best have damn good reasons for them if we’re to have them at all!!

  18. I count 43 Comments! (Thus far.) Wow! This must be a very, VERY IMPORTANT issue to Americans, n’est pas?

  19. WAY TO GO, SYSOP! You said it all! So often (much too often) the morons flash the “race card” when the offensiveness obviously has to do with BEHAVIOR, with an individual’s ACTIONS — not his skin color (as in “Hey, is this a black thing?”)

    No, you idiot, it’s a BEHAVIOR thing! I don’t care if you’re orange (or a lawyer.)

    Notice also that the initial report that everyone responded to came from CNN (!) And Reuters reported it the exactly same way — by OMITTING the most salient aspects, reducing the complaint to a mere T-shirt. Those leftist sources are Masters of Omission.

    HERE’S WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED: “The arrestees weren’t just wearing the T-shirts but were stopping passersby to express their views; that’s what led someone to complain to mall security, led mall security to tell the T-shirt-wearers to stop or leave, and then led the police to eventually tell them the same and arrest one of them when he didn’t leave.” — Quoted from another blogger.

  20. THERE’S A VERY EASY WAY TO SOLVE THESE PROBLEMS: Just gather a mob, go out and DEMONSTRATE. (Justice by screaming.)

    GUILDERLAND, N.Y. ? Officials at a mall where a man was arrested for refusing to remove an anti-war T-shirt asked Wednesday that trespassing charges against him be dropped.

    Police said managers from Crossgates Mall called and asked that the complaint against Stephen Downs be withdrawn. Police Chief James Murley said he would support the mall’s decision.

    Earlier Wednesday, about 100 anti-war demonstrators marched through the mall to protest the arrest. They told a mall manager they would stop only when charges against the shopper were dropped and when the mall outlined its policy.”

    SOURCE: Associated Press, Thursday, March 06, 2003

  21. For the first 100 years of the Republic, corporations could not participate (give money) in politics. I suggest we return to that. One corporation’s influence can be way beyond my single vote.

  22. Freedom of speech issues aside, why single out corporations? Why not limit all other forms of collective political participation? Like labor unions and environmental groups?

  23. SysOp Dude,
    Wow, sorry I torqued you off like that!! Actually I went back and re-read what you posted and yer right, you did write exclusively about cases involving disruptive behavior. I guess I must have assumed that you meant a business owner has a right to ban anyone for any reason based on the fact that the business takes place on private property. Upon re-reading I see you were apparently addressing only neb’s complaint of being kicked from a chat room for mentioning abortion. I expected a defense of private property rights of the owner trumping civil rights of the customer and, as I see I posted at 12:37 AM, that must be what I thought I was reading. Sorry, Dude.

  24. fyodor – actually, Nike is testing the free speech rights of corporations at the apellate level as we speak.

    Non-profits are, by definition, different than corporations. But now that you mention it, I think they can fall into the same “conjured entity” territory as corporations when it comes to influencing legislation that would affect them.

    You have cherry picked and distorted my arguments, most notably in the running for mayor thing. I would submit that if you think a corporation equals the dignity of man or woman, you would bestow those same qualities on a pet dog.

  25. As a resident of Minnesota, best known for its Mall of America (and a bald, professional rassler), there have been plenty of tests for the freedom of speech, assembly, etc. issues that this gigantic, city-within-a-city present. The courts have basically ruled that it’s private property and PETA can’t set up shop in front of Wilson’s Leather to talk about animal rights. The Mall is kind of a gated corporate community with its own rules of conduct, security force, surveillance procedures, fire department, medical services, etc. It even has its own zip code. No controversy allowed as it upsets the customers. Sort of a capitalist nirvana; one that real cities seemingly try to copy.

    The idea of a “commons” where you can set your soapbox up and talk about issues of the day is dead. You must go to City Hall, get a permit, jump through hoops and be blessed. The tyranny of regulation is never more evident than in political discourse. TV and blogs provide the medium now. We can hide behind our keyboards and screens from any fallout we may create from our views.

    Human contact, looking a person in the eye when you present a view, is over.

  26. Wasn’t a pet dog elected mayor in some town in Texas? Maybe he could appoint a corporation to be his sheriff.

    Fyi, I wrote a bit about the whole corporations-as-persons question in Reason a couple years ago. (Is there no issue we don’t cover?) The article’s here:

    https://reason.com/0107/co.jw.killing.shtml

  27. If we are truely Libertarians, then this is a no-brainer. Private property rights. No one can come in your home without your permission. Why should anyone be allowed in a PRIVATELY OWNED shopping mall without consent of the owner. Then you add in the terribly boorish behavior by the TRESSPASSERS and you have the deal. Pretty simple, I’d say.

  28. Lefty is right. Capitalism is censorship.

  29. Capitalism is censorship? That’s hilarious, coming from someone with the handle “Commie.”

    Want to talk about the shipment of books that the Cuban government just seized because they might have been given to “dissidents” (http://www.cnn.com/2003/WORLD/americas/02/28/cuba.books.ap/)?

    How about all the authors under Soviet control whose works were suppressed and who were sent to gulags or executed? Want to ask Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn who was responsible for more censorhip of his work?

    It even extends beyond fiction and politics to the sciences? Lysenkoism, anyone? The suppression of the idea of evolution via natural selection because it was counterrevolutionary?

    The entire concept of Communism is predicated on the control of information and the destruction and suppression of “retrograde” or “counterrevolutionary” material. In fact, I’d bet that if you asked any 100 people on the street the concepts most associated with Communism, “censorship” would be among the first three listed every single time.

    Jeebus, I don’t know how some people look at themselves in the mirror every day.

    As for the moron calling himself “Donnie Wilson,” when you can point to mass graves full of undesirable races, and full state control of all industries, you can talk to me about Nazis. Until then, get some perspective and grow the hell up.

  30. Places of public accomodation are subject to a different legal standard than private homes, churches, offices, and stores. A mall is a place of public accomodation for merchants and shoppers.

    True Libertarians don’t recognize this distinction. This is why True Libertarians oppose the Civil Rights Act and Fair Housing Act, and why they are utterly marginal in America’s political discourse. Moderate libertarians, on the other hand, recognize that when rights conflict, it is best to err on the side that promotes free dialogue.

  31. So did the guards actually ask them to remove their T-shirts? Or just to stop interfering with other patrons?
    What REALLY happened?

  32. The real problem we have is that corporations and governments are not humans yet we want to give them human qualities and attendant rights.

    One of the main reasons for incorporating is to shield humans from the liabilities of any corporate action. A corporation can dump strichnine in the water or loot their shareholders with no personal liability of any kind. The worst that can happen is they get a civil penalty larger than the check the corporation can write. The actual people behind the corporate deed (say, Kenny Lay), though, go unpunished.

    That’s very different than you or I. If we choose to conduct a rally without proper approval, or drive drunk or spank or child at the grocery store we go to jail, the ultimate freedom restriction.

    So don’t tell me that a mall is like my home. It walks and quacks just like any other public duck.

  33. Lefty, I think you’ll find libertarians are open to the notion that protections for corporations from *third party* liability (as opposed to the party with whom they’re doing business, who has a choice in the matter) are not right, though sometimes I wish they’d make a little more noise about it.

    One thing I wonder about reading all these posts is what do the police have to ask or determine before agreeing to kick someone out. Can a security guard say we want ’em out and the police comply? Or do the guards have to give an acceptable reason, ie it’s because of their behavior, not their screed. And if it’s the latter, do they have to witness the bad behavior themselves, or can they just take the guard’s word for it? I concur with Sam G’s confusion about what really happened, cause the police were quoted as saying that they don’t care who’s wearing what, the issue was trespass, so I wonder if this other stuff was added later to protect the mall’s ass. We’ll see how that shakes out, but still I wonder about the “what ifs” I raised.

    Regarding the mall replacing the mythical “commons”, nice of the mall owners to pay for a roof over our heads so we can all be comfortable exercising whatever rights we claim to have in this “public” place….

  34. Ha, I was a comedian and didn’t know it!! Meant to say “creed” in that last post, not “screed!!” The point being, that if you can kick someone out for their behavior but not for the creed, as some have suggested in this thread, to what degree do the cops have to know that this is the case to enforce the eviction?

  35. I can honestly say that, of all the libertarians I know, not a single one of them favors the concept of the limited-liability corporation.

  36. >>A corporation can dump strichnine in the water or loot their shareholders with no personal liability of any kind.

  37. I wonder what these Leftarians would say if the guy was thrown out for a KKK shirt. They would probably protest the mall for NOT kicking the guy out.

  38. SysOp-

    In revision to my earlier post where I incorrectly stated that I had expressed my views on abortion, what I meant to say is that I got kicked off for using the *word* abortion.

    I was actually expressing my views on free speech on private property. 🙂

    The context was in defense of a friend who had been kicked off after debating abortion issues with other users. Everyone seemed to be enjoying a rather intellectual debate. This offended the SysOp though, so he kicked my friend.

    In objecting to my friend bieng kicked, I merely used the word “abortion” in my comment on the matter – and in the SysOp’s view, this was to be taken as “discussing abortion” which was prohibited (not in the BBS rules/charter – but in a post a few days before that I may or may not have read).

    By all accounts, it was an absurd application of the BBS rules and the SysOp reinstated me once he cooled down.

    The point is that any person that offers a public forum to discuss a topic should accept they may be exposed to views other than their own. Forum owners who wish to avoid this can require membership fees and restrict access as required.

  39. On college campuses, it has become fashionable to designate “free speech zones”, areas where you can have your rally/revival/whatever. I guess the idea is to allow free expression (sort of) without disrupting the business of the university.

    My direct experience with this is limited to state schools, the entirety of which could arguably be designated as “public” spaces. However, the problems with allowing demonstations in say, the library or a lecture hall are obvious. The free speech zones appear to be an attempt to compromise between the obligation(?) to provide a forum and the need to conduct university business without disruption.

    To me, this raises two issues: does public funding of universities make them “public” spaces, and thus, places where freedom of speech cannot be abridged; and second, if so, does this mean that public funding of anything make it such a place? Would “malls” or similar developments that recieve public money as part of “urban renewal” initiatives therefore be obliged to provide “free speech zones”? What about taxpayer-subsidized sports arenas? I’m still trying to sort this out…anyone want to weigh in?

  40. Brian makes a great point of the corruption of public money on private propert. Leftists would probably hail this as “increased democracy” but it should be obvious that this a slippery slope for freedom.

    I maintain the corruption of private property INCREASES the spector of censorship, as decision making is taken away from individual citizens and placed in the hands of the legistlators, courts and other agents of the State, all of whom decide for “all of us” where speech is “free” or not.

  41. “And while I am a huge fan of freedom of speech, the constitution only prohibits congress from abridging it”

    This would be true if not for the doctrine of incorporation under the fourteenth amendment. The rights which the federal government must not abridge, must not be abridged by the states or local government either.

  42. Hey, lefty…tell me where you hang out in Minne-sota der, hey and I’ll come by that “Public Accomodation” and see how long you’re willing to let me talk to people about Jesus or “right wing” politics or rail against the left and the commies. Please! You don’t believe in private property for others and certainly not for EVIL corporations. Your intellectually dishonest on this one at best.

  43. Well, the minute I saw in the article that the man involved was a lawyer, I took it for granted there was a lot more involved than just being booted out for being a peacenik.

  44. Some of you guys don’t get it. Freedom (liberty) has nothing to do with Left or Right. Humans can be just as tyrannized by corporations as they can by government.

  45. Governments and corporations are abstractions Lefty. Try not to think in terms of collectives but instead of individual human beings.

  46. Warren, the state of New York is as constrained by the 1st amendment as the federal Congress is. The Bill Of Rights empowers the National govt to protect those rights against infringement by the States–lest they might not exist at all. (search for the USSC decision as I don’t recall it off-hand)

    SysOP, you are (perhaps unknowingly) arguing for the right of diners, restaraunts and hotels to discriminate as they please against race, religeon or creed. I have NO right to ask someone who’s entered my print-shop to leave based on such privacies. I DO have a right to ask them to leave if they are bothering my other customers.

    INDIVIDUAL business (para-public)property Rights are subject to the same oversight as States’ Rights. Paying admission is irrelevent. I am one of, and among, my fellow citizens; none of whom were extended a specific invitation–only a general one for business’ sake. In every case; commerce Property rights are trumped by the Bill of Rights; and I applaud neb okla for making that case…and despise him for stealing my thunder.

  47. there are several issues afloat here, but going back to the actual removal of this lawyer from this mall, was he involved in political acts — that is approaching other patrons and getting them to take a pin, take a flyer, sign a petition or something?
    you could see how mall owners wouldn’t like that spontaneously happening. however, if said fellow were simply wearing this t-shirt and eating and minding his business, then i would have a problem with having him removed. (oh, volokh.blogspot.com/2003_03_02_volokh_archive.html#90411868 claims that the t-shirt people were out on the prowel — that’s probably a no-no)

    hi “commie”. and lefty, so…from minnesota. i didn’t know walter mondale shaved his head and became a rassler. heh heh heh. go bears.

    cheers,
    drf (chicago)

  48. I think it was a goat.

    Thanks, Jesse, for the reference. My reasoning isn’t based on limiting free speech at all, though. It’s more of a populist, level playing field argument that, of course, you covered as well.

    I respect your and fyodor’s views on the matter and sure enjoy a good give and take.

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  51. EMAIL: pamela_woodlake@yahoo.com
    IP: 68.173.7.113
    URL: http://online-prescription-drug.drugsexperts.com
    DATE: 01/09/2004 07:27:32
    No cause is so right that one cannot find a fool following it.

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