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Why is Washington, D.C. Prohibiting Prayer and the First Amendment on the Public Sidewalk, but Protecting Abortion and Planned Parenthood

Contact: Rev. Patrick Mahoney, 540-538-4741, 202-547-1735

WASHINGTON, July 27 /Christian Newswire/ -- Government officials have threatened scores with arrest if they pray and counsel on a public sidewalk leading to Planned Parenthood in Washington, D.C.

Rev. Patrick Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, was arrested June 8 for peacefully praying on the public sidewalk.

Photo: Rev. Mahoney moments before he was arrested.
 
Is this the future of free speech and the First Amendment under President Obama?
 
For years, the pro-life community was allowed to pray, counsel and offer women help on the public sidewalk and property leading up to Planned Parenthood.  View photo here.

The American Center for Law and Justice, after extensive legal research and face to face meetings with D.C. City officials, have determined the sidewalk and property around it still remain public.
 
Pro-life activists plan to go back to the public sidewalk and pray on August 14 during a campaign called "A Time to Stand."
 
For more information go to atimetostand.org.
 
Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, states,

    "On June 8, I was arrested for peacefully praying and reading the  Scriptures on a public sidewalk in Washington, D.C.  It is tragic that federal officials in our nation's capital would crush the First Amendment and prohibit prayer while protecting abortion and Planned Parenthood.

    "For years, members of the faith and pro-life community have been allowed  to pray, counsel and hold peaceful witness on the public sidewalk leading up to Planned Parenthood.  Suddenly, the federal government has now determined that protecting access to abortion is more important than protecting the First Amendment and free speech.

    "It is clear that the sidewalk leading up to Planned Parenthood remains public. Despite their claims, Planned Parenthood has not produced one piece of evidence, documentation, or verification from the city that the nature of that sidewalk has changed.
     
    "On August 14, we are going back to that public sidewalk to peacefully pray and exercise our First Amendment rights.  We want to send a clear and powerful message to the federal government that we will not be bullied, intimidated or pressured into surrendering our free speech rights."

On June 29, the Department of Justice and US Attorneys did not show up at the arraignment of Rev. Mahoney and no charges were filed against him for his June 8 arrest.

For more information or interviews call:
Rev. Patrick Mahoney at  540.538.4741    202.547.1735