Photo: Michelle M via Flickr
Westboro Baptist Church has pushed back against a new law that prohibits protesting at military funerals.The “honouring America’s Veterans and Caring for Camp Lejeune Families Act of 2012” act, which was signed by President Obama Monday, prohibits protests two hours before or after a funeral service, and requires that they occur at least 300 feet from the service itself, the Huffington Post reported.
“We have a moral sacred duty to our men and women in uniform,” Obama said before signing the bill, KMAS News reported. “The graves of our veterans are hallowed grounds.”
The law could result in fines of up to $50,000 as well as civil lawsuits, according to the Huffington Post.
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Westboro Baptist Church is notorious for its anti-gay protests outside veteran’s funerals, and Tweeted defiantly at Obama on Tuesday that “there’s usually prime real estate at 301 feet.”
The organisation told CNN last week that it does not plan to stop its protests in light of the new law.
“That’s really not going to change our plans at all,” said Westboro Baptist Church spokesman Steve Drain. “We’re going to continue to do that. We’re also going to continue to obey all laws.”
The Veterans Act goes against a 2011 Supreme Court ruling which said that such protests as those conducted by the church were protected by the First Amendment, the Examiner reported.
Here, Twitter reacts to the new law and Westboro Baptist’s response:
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