We already learned from Dale Mcapline that arresting street preachers for telling passers-by gays are going to hell isn’t just stupid, it gives religious zealots a chance to sue government officials for violating their religious freedoms. And that’s exactly what fellow British street preacher Anthony Rollins did after his June 2008 arrest (and four-hour jail sentence) for quoting the King James Bible’s 1 Corinthians that supposedly lumps in gays with “abusers of themselves with mankind.” He’s now receiving a £4,000 damages payment from the police department that cuffed him — a ruling I completely agree with.
Let these men fill the public square with their vitriol, because they’re actually doing us a favor. Yes, they are bullies, but it’s not as if people walking by are treating these men seriously. They view them as a nuisance and roll their eyes at their hatemongering. It’s a street preacher’s right to believe he is spreading the gospel, the same way it is our right to ignore and condemn what he says.