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  1. #1

    NFL fan challenging "code of conduct" policy via First Amendment



    Basically he is a Cardinals fan who says he was being cussed at all game, and finally when physically approached by 2 Chargers fans told them to fuck off and got thrown out.

    http://www.10news.com/news/30365601/detail.html

    SAN DIEGO -- A legal showdown is looming over whether fans have the right to curse at Chargers or Padres games.

    In October 2010, the Chargers were in the midst of blowing out the Arizona Cardinals at Qualcomm Stadium. Eric Holguin, an off-duty Los Angeles police officer who was at the game wearing Cardinals colors, said he was being cursed out the entire game by many fans. He said he did not respond until two fans approached him.

    "Two Chargers fans came down and challenged him to a fight. He said no thank you and said, '[expletive] you' back," said Holguin's attorney, Mary Frances Prevost.

    Prevost said security eventually ejected all three men. But when Holguin headed back to the entrance to meet his wife, he was greeted by several police officers.

    "They expect that he's trying to get back in and literally grab him and a struggle ensues," said Prevost.

    A bruised Holguin was arrested, but a jury later acquitted him for assault and resisting arrest. He was, however, convicted for giving a false name to officers but has vowed to appear in court.

    Prevost said it was a legal nightmare that began with an ejection that was unconstitutional.

    "A fan has a right to say '[expletive] you]' in public. It's a public place," Prevost said.
    Normally I would just laugh off any lawsuit from fan vs league knowing the NFL would smash them like a bug, but this one might have some merit.

    I mean I don't see how this isn't squarely a free speech issue, and how the NFL can get around that. Then again you agree to the NFL "rules" upon entering the stadium, so I don't know.

    You can't just say well it MIGHT lead to violence, until it actually does it means nothing IMO.

    I have seen many incidents at stadiums I disagree with in regards to the security and how they handle issues. In my mind you should be able to say whatever you want, as long as it doesn't get physical. People pay a ton of money to go to these games and you just can't arbitrarily throw them out at the first expletive heard. Or maybe you can...who knows.
    Last edited by 52decleetzu; 02-03-2012 at 05:46 PM.




  2. #2
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    Re: NFL fan challenging "code of conduct" policy via First Amendment

    If you read the disclaimer on the back of the ticket, they can pretty much eject you at any time for any reason including no reason at all. Not saying it's right, but I think legally they have their backside covered.
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  3. #3
    I don't know the specifics surrounding how Qualcomm came to be, but this is an interesting legal question. I'm no lawyer, but to me, regardless of whether public funds were utilized in the construction of the stadium, the sale of tickets turns sporting events into something private wherein freedom of speech is not guaranteed.


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  4. #4
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    Re: NFL fan challenging "code of conduct" policy via First Amendment

    The 1st Amendment is a right that protects the individual from *government* prohibiting free speech.

    Private property, private event = No 1st Amendment Restraint.

    Look at it like someone coming into your house. You can bounce someone from your house for any reason or no reason.

    So too can any team in the league.
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