April 29, 2011
Man Arrested for Reading Bible
Posted by Dave Blount at April 29, 2011 6:40 AM
Since this didn't happen in Saudi Arabia or Iran, it could only have been in moonbattery-ravaged California — a man was actually hauled off in handcuffs for reading a Bible aloud:
When Mark Mackey, a member of the local Calvary Chapel, showed up to the DMV office in Hemet, CA on February 2, he had a goal: read the Bible and introduce those waiting in line to the "gospel of Jesus Christ." And for about 15 minutes he was successful. That is until a California Highway Patrolman took the Bible from his hands, arrested him, and told him he was guilty of preaching to a "captive audience."
With crimes this serious, it's important to incarcerate accomplices too:
According to reports, Mackey wasn't the only one arrested. Pastor Brett Coronado and Edmond Flores, Jr., who were accompanying him, were also taken into custody.
They were charged with "impeding an open business," despite being at least 50 feet away from the entrance. Observes Jennifer Monk of Advocates for Faith and Freedom, which is representing the alleged criminals in a lawsuit,
"The purpose of the arrests appears to have been to censor them."
Too bad they weren't members of a union. That would have exempted them from Penal Code Section 602.1(b), under which they were charged. I'm guessing being Muslim instead of Christian would have exempted them too.
Not to worry; Lt. Michael Soubirous of the California Highway Patrol reassures the public that "We don't inhibit people's right to free speech — we regulate it."
Although the DA isn't pushing criminal charges, Advocates for Faith and Freedom are going through with the lawsuit anyway, "to preserve the liberty to read the Bible aloud on public property without fear of criminal prosecution," according to General Counsel Robert Tyler.
Someone's got to draw a line somewhere.
On a tip from Oiao.