Bass: SERVE Act Does Not Infringe 1st Amendment

Aug 9, 2012

New Hampshire Congressman Charlie Bass is celebrating the enactment of a law he backed to curb protests at military funerals Thursday.

At a statehouse news conference, Bass, flanked by veteran groups, said the new law strikes the right balance.

“I think that we have a fundamental obligation to ensure that fallen service members receive the honor and respect that they deserve.”

The Sanctity of Eternal Rest for Veterans or SERVE act, among other things, increases the buffer radius around the funeral site from 300 feet to 500. It also increases penalties for violators.

The Westboro Baptist Church held a protest at the funeral of Army Captain Jonathan Grassbaugh from Hampstead after he was killed in an IED explosion in 2007. The ACLU says this new law stifles free speech.