No Constitutional Right to Harass 

Pin It
Favorite

Whenever the subject of panhandling comes up [“Change in the Air,” Aug. 27, City Weekly], someone starts spouting off about how panhandling is protected by “constitutional rights to free speech.” It is as predictable as night following day.

I’m afraid that I have bad news for the people who keep replaying this broken record: Freedom-of-speech laws do not give any person or group the right to harm another. When panhandlers reside in certain areas, people like myself begin making the choice to avoid these areas. I am not particularly small, frail or easy to intimidate; I am just sick and tired of having to say “no.”

I can easily see how a senior or petite person could be intimidated, and I feel for them. When we all choose to avoid an area, the shopkeepers involved lose real money, the state loses real taxes and any development of these areas becomes instantly pointless. This is measurable, tangible harm. And not protected by the Constitution.

Steve White
Salt Lake City

Pin It
Favorite

Speaking of City Weekly,

  • No Mankinis at Mystic Hot Springs

    I’m a naturist but recently began wearing a two-sided thong that I made using a thick material to appease the prudish people who are present at hot springs.
    • Sep 7, 2010
  • Vote for Your Favorite Restaurant

    The 2010 Dining Guide wants you!
    • Sep 6, 2010
  • Busy Roads Help Businesses

    While I applaud the purpose of the Get Out article by Wina Sturgeon about driving in the Salt Lake valley, I would like you to consider another viewpoint.
    • Jul 6, 2010
  • More »

More by City Weekly Readers

  • Soap Box: Jan. 5-11

    Our readers respond to rents, bud and Biskupski.
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • Soap Box: Dec. 29-Jan. 4

    Our readers respond to brothel legalization, the closing of a neighborhood dive bar and pitfalls of the past year.
    • Jan 11, 2017
  • Soap Box: Dec. 22-28

    Here’s what our readers had to say about Bears Ears designation, new homeless shelters, Temple Square lights and more.
    • Jan 4, 2017
  • More »

Latest in Letters

  • Soap Box: Jan. 5-11

    Our readers respond to rents, bud and Biskupski.
    • Jan 18, 2017
  • Soap Box: Dec. 29-Jan. 4

    Our readers respond to brothel legalization, the closing of a neighborhood dive bar and pitfalls of the past year.
    • Jan 11, 2017
  • Soap Box: Dec. 22-28

    Here’s what our readers had to say about Bears Ears designation, new homeless shelters, Temple Square lights and more.
    • Jan 4, 2017
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Readers also liked…

  • A Strange and Barbaric Practice

    In the well-written City Weekly cover story on circumcision ["Circumcision Decision," Sept. 17], the God of the Jewish, Muslim and Christian religions is credited with beginning this practice: God demands that the 99-year- old Abraham cut off his foreskin in order to prove his loyalty.
    • Sep 23, 2015
  • Trumped Up

    Donald Trump's candidacy is the political equivalent of professional wrestling
    • Jul 15, 2015

© 2017 Salt Lake City Weekly

Website powered by Foundation