It's difficult to wrap your mind around some things in this world. Genocide. Slavery. Trafficking. Abortion. While the former three evils are widely despised and hated, the latter is coveted and loved. Because abortion is treasured, fought for, and defended bitterly, I believe it is the evil this generation must fight. Each generation has a foe which needs to be vanquished – whether it was slavery during the Civil War era, or the Nazi's during World War II – we all have our evils to conquer. Here in Colorado, in Denver, Adams, and Douglas County, compassion and free speech have been outlawed. You don't believe me? Let's take a look at a statute which doesn't allow people to exercise compassion or free speech.Each generation has a battle to fight. Today, it is the battle for free speech and compassion.
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Preventing Passage to and from a Health Care Facility
This statute – C.R.S. 18-9-122 (2), makes it a crime to “knowingly obstruct, detain, hinder, impede, or block another person's entry to or exit from a health care facility. This law is written vaguely – you can't talk to someone without detaining, hindering, obstructing, or blocking their path. This law was written vaguely on purpose to allow the court to prosecute people who only want to talk. Unfortunately, this vague law goes on in subsection (3):
“No person shall knowingly approach another person within eight feet of such person, unless such other person consents, for the purpose of passing a leaflet or handbill to, displaying a sign to, or engaging in oral protest, education, or counseling with such other person in the public way or sidewalk area within a radius of 100 feet from any entrance door to a health care facility.”
Law Against Counseling, Education, and Compassion
This law specifically states it is illegal to engage in counseling or education within 100 feet of a health care facility. Since when were education and counseling banned? I'll tell you why: They were banned to protect an industry so bloody and disgusting, they don't even want to allow discussion of the idea near their entrance – or people's consciences might be engaged.
Some States Preserve the First Amendment
Some states realize the unconstitutional implications of laws against education and compassion. Last week, the Supreme Court struck down a similar law in Massachusetts, called the “buffer zone law.” This law prohibited any person within a 35-foot radius of an abortion clinic entrance from passing out leaflets, handbills, holding signs, counseling, or educating. The Supreme Court's reasoning was wise:
“Petitioners wish to converse with their fellow citizens about an important subject on the public streets and sidewalks – sites that have hosted discussions about the issues of the day throughout history. Respondents assert undeniable significant interests in maintaining public safety on those same streets and sidewalks, as well as preserving access to adjacent healthcare facilities. But here the Commonwealth has pursued those interests by the extreme step of closing a substantial portion of a traditional public forum to all speakers. It has done so without seriously addressing the problem through alternatives that leave the forum open for its time-honored purposes. The Commonwealth may not do that consistent with the First Amendment.”
In other words, the Supreme Court recognizes the free speech rights of pro-life supporters as well as pro-abortion supporters. As they should. Any debate about important moral and public policy issues should always be open to willing participants.
Personal Experience with this Unconstitutional Law
I have had personal experience with this Colorado unconstitutional law. I worked with a client – a wonderful woman with a heart and compassion for the unborn and their mothers. She and her friends stand out in the rain and snow in an attempt to educate and inform women about the decision they are about to make. She wants to offer an alternative and provide hope. She was charged with this class 3 misdemeanor for her compassion and wish to The Colorado court actually convicted someone of a crime for attempting to educate and counsel against the taking of a human life.educate. She was charged with multiple other related crimes as well. We fought hard for her in court, and we won them all – except for this misdemeanor offense. The Colorado court actually convicted someone of a crime for attempting to educate and counsel against the taking of a human life. We live in a twisted world indeed. This isn't always the case. Often, we work with good judges who understand the importance of upholding the constitution and right to free speech. We often get cases dismissed in Jefferson, Arapahoe, and El Paso County in these situations. Either way, we will continue the fight for what we know is right so we can conquer the evil of our generation.
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If you or a loved one has been charged with a crime which goes against your right to free speech, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O'Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880 for a free consultation. Together, we can protect your future.Request a Free Consultation