Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 15
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    26

    Default Conducting Business in a Public Park

    My question involves civil rights in the State of: Idaho

    I enjoy taking my telescope to the nearby public park and showing the moon and planets to 60+ people per night. I carry it around, asking if anyone wants to see them. Most say yes and are very thankful. I do not ask for nor accept donations.

    Could that be counted as soliciting?

    If such a law existed, would it be an unconstitutional violation of my freedom of speech?

    Would it be constitutional for them to make me pay a $100 fee and wait 6 weeks for a background check before I may continue showing off the moon? (I could pass the check, but I would object to the inconvenience and to the slippery slope of denying free speech rights to those who can't pass.)

    Thanks.

    Also, if this does happen, how much should I say to the officer so I have the best ability to overturn the law or fight the fine?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Somewhere near Canada
    Posts
    35,894

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    Ah. Bored on a Friday night, are we?

    Bye, Mike.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    17,924

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    We're on to you, Mike.

    Maybe you should just go away and never come back.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    Also, I like to stay in the park well after dark to look for galaxies and star clusters and nebulae. The park closes at sunset but has no dense. If I were cited for being there after curfew, how could I fight that? So far I was questioned by a cop once, and he left me alone once he saw my big telescope. I wonder if I had binoculars, would I be suspected of peeping into apartment windows 1/4 mile away, if found laying on my back with them pointed at the sky.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    24,389

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    Your bridge is lonely, Mike.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    1,172

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    I suggest you find a local amateur astronomy club/observatory where your help would be appreciated. They do exist and can be a group of people who share your interest. http://www.go-astronomy.com/astro-cl...e.php?State=ID

    If the park closes at dark, yes, you would be trespassing. Yes, you can be fined. Yes, "they" assuming the park service can be concerned if you are not with a specific organized event and ask for money and a background check if you want to hold an "event" in the park. And that could be requiring a background check to hold your "events".

    Freedom of speech doesn't mean that laws and rules can't exist..... and that you don't have to follow them.

    You need to go to whoever is over the parks and ask. If you had an astronomy club backing your event, you'd have better luck probably. Maybe even check into a children's museum or boy scout groups as they are often looking for events/speakers.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    7,941

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    Quote Quoting MikeSmith321
    View Post
    My question involves civil rights in the State of: Idaho

    I enjoy taking my telescope to the nearby public park and showing the moon and planets to 60+ people per night. I carry it around, asking if anyone wants to see them. Most say yes and are very thankful. I do not ask for nor accept donations.

    Could that be counted as soliciting?
    That would depend on the local ordinances and exactly what you did.

    Quote Quoting MikeSmith321
    View Post
    If such a law existed, would it be an unconstitutional violation of my freedom of speech?
    That would depend on exactly what the ordinance said and what activity the ordinance restricted. Gazing at the stars is not itself a form of speech so that activity is not protected by the First Amendment. Your interactions with others might involve protected speech, but without details no one can really give you any informed opinion on that.

    A local ordinance that sets reasonable times for access to a city park is not going to violate the First Amendment. Ordinances that require permits for activities in the park generally will not violate the First Amendment unless the basis for determining when to issue the permit is based on the speech that will take place.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    Is this post relevant since this guy is not facing any charges

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    7,941

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    Quote Quoting Bad decisions 2015
    View Post
    Is this post relevant since this guy is not facing any charges
    One does not need to be already facing charges, a lawsuit, etc., to ask about the law. Indeed, it is a good idea to understand the law that applies to something you plan to do before you do it so you can avoid trouble in the first place.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    301

    Default Re: Is Showing the Moon and Planets Protected Free Speech

    As to the last question posed by the OP, I do not recommend saying anything to a police officer who is investigating you for the possible commission of an offense or crime. If he has probable cause to cite or arrest you, you are not going to talk your way out of that. If he does not, then opening your mouth might just inadvertently give him what he needs. So gaze at your stars but only when lawfully allowed to be there) and offer to let people look through your telescope all you like. If a police officer starts questioning you about what you're doing just respectfully smile and tell him "I don't have anything to say". Be prepared to stick to that because he might become quite irritated with you, but those are the breaks...

    1. Sponsored Links
       

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Starting a Business: Do You Hace to Register a LLC With the State Before Conducting Business
    By bluegrass1 in forum Business Law
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-21-2015, 01:56 AM
  2. Trespass: Encroachment on a Public Park
    By Patriot88 in forum Real Estate Ownership and Title
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-06-2013, 09:16 AM
  3. Business Disputes: Revoked LLC Still Conducting Business
    By luckycharmz in forum Business Law
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-19-2011, 07:39 PM
  4. Drunk and Impaired Driving: Arrested for DUI in a Public Park
    By Rail Roaded in forum Drunk and Impaired Driving Charges
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 05-25-2010, 07:26 PM
  5. Business Issues: Using a Pseudonym When Conducting Business
    By needsomeadvice45 in forum Business Law
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-05-2010, 12:38 PM
 
 
Sponsored Links

Legal Help, Information and Resources