The justices, by an 8-1 vote, said Wednesday that members of Westboro Baptist Church had a right to promote what they call a broad-based message on public matters such as wars. The father of a fallen Marine had sued the small church, saying those protests amounted to targeted harassment and an intentional infliction of emotional distress.The father had this response the Supreme Court ruling:
"My first thought was that eight justices don't have the common sense that God gave a goat.... We found out today that we can no longer bury our dead in this county with dignity."Justice Alito, the sole dissenter, wrote that the
"...outrageous conduct caused petitioner great injury, and the court now compounds that injury by depriving petitioner of a judgment that acknowledges the wrong he suffered ....In order to have a society in which public issues can be openly and vigorously debated, it is not necessary to allow the brutalization of innocent victims like petitioner."Alito has been on the wrong side of virtually every issue, since he joined the court, but he certainly got it right this time.