Preacher Arrested for Free Speech

After years as a Deputy Sheriff in Los Angeles County, Tony Miano became a full-time preacher. Recently he was arrested for “hate speech” after a sermon preached on the streets of London (Telegraph, July 4, 2013). The sermon cited actions God labels sins, including homosexuality. An offended woman reported Miano’s preaching. Police arrested Miano, held him for six hours, took his fingerprints and DNA, and then released him without charge (ibid.). Miano commented about his experience: “it became apparent that the interrogation was about more than the incident that took place in the street but what I believed and how I think… I was being interrogated about my thoughts… that is the basic definition of thought police.” He noted he “had arrested many people in his career but never over something they believed” (ibid.). Hate speech has become a broad “catch-phrase,” often applied unjustly. God warned that we are not to “pervert justice” or “show partiality” (Deuteronomy 16:19). He warned against “[following] a crowd to do evil” (Exodus 23:2). As the values of society change, increasing numbers of people are experiencing persecution for Bible-based comments, despite “laws on the books” in their nations protecting free speech. God warns about those who put evil in the place of good (Isaiah 5:20). For more on this vital topic, view our Tomorrow’s World telecast on “Modern Morality and the Ten Commandments.