Ah, Reverend Don Wildmon. Once known for picketing TV shows and comic strips, now turning his attention to hate crime legislation. The latest American Family Association newsletter hysterically claims that new anti-hate-crime legislation in front of the House (HR 1592) and Senate (S 1105) would make it illegal to preach against homosexuality.
The actual text of the bill, in fact, says that that’s not what the bill trying to do. Section 8 says that nothing in the bill “shall be construed to prohibit any expressive conduct protected from legal prohibition by, or any activities protected by the free speech or free exercise clauses of, the First Amendment to the Constitution.” The whole bill targets violent felonies causing bodily injury that are motivated by prejudice. If the Reverend Wildmon would spend more time reading and less time picketing, he might have picked up on the distinction.