On Saturday I wrote about the episode having to do with our group of five people, out at Blanchard Park, giving tracts away and talking to people. I am still amazed at what happened that day, and as I continue to think about it, I realize that we need to be praying for our country. I know people today are ignorant about true historical events and even what the Constitution says. I have to try to not take it so personally, I know.
My son had some insight into something that happened while the security guard was trying to make us leave. Remember I said that 'Ed' accused us of 'solicitation', and he then ordered us off the park property. When asked, Ed did not know what to say to the question, 'Do you believe we have freedom of speech here?'. You could tell that Ed was not experienced with people like us. He had no category for us. He threatened to call the police, but then didn't go through with his threat.
The man Ed was conversing with, got a business card from Ed, with his supervisor's name on it. With that, he called the supervisor. When he got a hold of the supervisor and explained the situation to him, the supervisor definitely said that Ed was in the wrong, and that we had the right to be in the park and giving out tracts and Bibles. He also sent an apology to all of us.
But here is what is most interesting; My son pointed this out tonight as we were talking about this event; while we were having the discussion with the security guard, and he was explaining to us that we were 'soliciting' (which we weren't because we weren't selling anything), an ice cream truck was coming though the park. You could hear the unique sound of the ice cream truck. They play that music to let people know they are coming through. If they see people on the side of the road, they will stop and people will buy their goods. Isn't it amazing that there were no security guards going after the ice cream truck? Wouldn't that be considered 'soliciting'? People can sell ice cream in a park, but they can't give out beach balls that have Scripture on them because that is soliciting? What is wrong with this picture? I think we have an idea what it wrong with it. And I think that it is common knowledge (although wrong knowledge) for people who work at parks, to believe that it is wrong for people to be at a park, and using their freedom of speech rights, to communicate the Gospel in any way. They put a label on it, even though it is a wrong label. If the people in our group were ignorant, we probably would have assumed that the security guard was right, and we would probably never go back again. And every time we go to a new place and get kicked out, we probably would think that we were caught doing something we weren't supposed to be doing, when in reality, we were doing the right thing, in the right place, all along. Ignorance is a very wicked enemy. But we know better. And I know enough to become familiar with the law and carry the Constitution with me from now on (Hey I didn't realize, but I have the Constitution on my I-Phone!). Also will print out the page from ACLJ and have it with me.