Pushback: City in Georgia forced to rescind a law that required permits for any protest

“Terrorist” Jerry Gray holding his terrible sign

Bring a gun to a knife fight: After veteran Jeff Gray was issued a citation and fined for standing in front of the city hall of Blackshear, Georgia, with a sign that said “God Bless the Homeless Vets,” he sued, hiring the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) to represent him.

In Blackshear, Police Chief Chris Wright approached Gray and informed him of a city ordinance requiring citizens to obtain a government permit for a “parade, procession, or demonstration” if they wanted to hold a sign outside city hall. Although Wright said it was “kind of silly,” he explained that the ordinance — nearly identical to one struck down by the Supreme Court in 1969 — meant that Gray would need to send a letter to Blackshear’s mayor and city council explaining the purpose of his one-person demonstration and obtain the council’s approval. Gray was issued a criminal citation, which was later dismissed.

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