Deb Shaughnessy http://michiganradio.org en Bill protecting Michigan worship services from disruption nears approval http://michiganradio.org/post/bill-protecting-michigan-worship-services-disruption-nears-approval <p>Those who disrupt religious services in Michigan could soon face much harsher penalties.</p><p><a href="http://www.legislature.mi.gov/documents/2011-2012/billconcurred/House/pdf/2012-HCB-5560.pdf">A bill</a> sponsored by state Rep. Deb <span>Shaughnessy, R-Charlotte, intended to prevent disruptions during worship events, cleared the state Senate last week. </span></p><p><span>From the Associated Press</span>:</p><blockquote><p>The fine for disorderly conduct at a religious service could go as high as $1,000, which is more than the maximum fine for many misdemeanors. A second offense could cost as much as $5,000. A judge could also order at least 100 days of community service.</p></blockquote><p>According to <a href="http://www.gophouse.com/readarticle.asp?id=8993&amp;District=71">a press release from Shaughnessy&#39;s office</a>, the legislation was inspired by a 2008 protest at the Mount Hope Church in Delta Township. As part of the protest, members of a gay-rights anarchist group interrupted a service at the megachurch by throwing flyers, pulling fire alarms and shouting slogans.</p><p>The press release quotes Rep. Shaughnessy:</p><blockquote><p><span>&quot;The right of Michigan residents to gather and worship is not only guaranteed by the Bill of Rights, it is a right that must be respected by those with other beliefs...Nobody should fear disruption of their worship services by political opponents, and this legislation should shield them from such chaos.&quot;</span></p></blockquote><p><span>The bill is now on Gov. Rick Snyder&#39;s desk awaiting approval</span>.</p><p><em>-John Klein Wilson, Michigan Radio Newsroom</em> Fri, 22 Jun 2012 16:15:00 +0000 Michigan Radio Newsroom 7981 at http://michiganradio.org Bill protecting Michigan worship services from disruption nears approval