My criminal case is now in the appeal process after the judge found me guilty, for a second time, of third degree criminal trespassing while I was preaching at the UA during their annual “Tucson Festival of the Books” while using my small amplification system.
This case in the Pima County Consolidated Justice Court lasted over one year. The appeal process could take another year—even longer.
My criminal defense attorney handling my case, Mark Williman, is experienced and knows the law. Unfortunately, when you had a judge like I did, newly elected with no background as a lawyer and an avowed lesbian, the deck was stacked against me from virtually the get-go.
I could not discuss this judge, Paula Aboud, throughout the over year long trial because I felt that, if she got wind of what I posted on FB or my blog about her, things could have become uglier than what they were.
Just who is my judge, Paula Aboud? First, she was a democratic state senator here in my home state of AZ, born and raised in Tucson. Here are some quotes from a Wikipedia article about Judge Aboud:
“In addition to her professional career Aboud was a long-time activist for the Tucson Democratic Party.” This should give us a glimpse of Aboud’s political leanings and I would suggest they are not conservative. I don’t believe Aboud is a card carrying member of the NRA but probably is for Planned Parenthood.
But the article gets more interesting. Under the heading “Personal Life,” it reveals this:
“She was one of four openly LGBT members of the Arizona State Legislature.”
Aboud proudly identified herself as a lesbian while she was a state senator. Putting a couple of these facts together (and there are more), I would argue that it would be difficult for Judge Aboud to objectively sit as my judge for the “crime” that I was arrested for.
I will explain more in subsequents posts about this judge.
One of the many dangers aging Christians face as we pilgrim through this world is forgetting our Lord.
Though we may have begun strong in Him, full of faith, blessings and wisdom, there is a chance of throwing all of this away and dying in foolishness—even apostasy.
Solomon prominently comes to mind as one such example: a king who was blessed beyond measure in the beginning of his reign, full of godly wisdom and knowledge, who ended in tragedy. His riches, power and influence in the world for righteousness sake were incalculable.
Solomon threw all of this away and appears to have died a fool and an idolater of the worst kind. His rise and fall from greatness is a story I often return to in the hope I might learn not to follow in his disastrous footsteps.
He forgot God, allowing the innumerable blessings showered upon him to come between him and his Lord. The very blessings poured abundantly upon Solomon were the very things that destroyed him. This causes me to tremble in my spirit—if this apostasy and rebellion could happen to the wisest man in the world, it can certainly happen to me.
Jesus warned His disciples of this very thing in Matthew 26:41: “Keep watching and praying that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak” (NIV).
Most of us know people who began strong in the Lord and now, years later, no longer walk with Him. Or, if they still profess to be believers, you would not know this by the lifestyles they now lead and the words that come out of their mouths.
We all need to remember this other warning from Jesus and take heed: “…but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” Matthew 24:13 (NIV)
I filed my federal lawsuit against the University of AZ and their police department for my illegal arrest and incarceration last year at the annual “Tucson Festival of Books,” the third largest outdoor book fair in the United States.
This case, if won, will have far reaching implications for those who use amplification in their outdoor ministries: sidewalk counselors in front of abortion clinics and open-air preachers, to name two.
My case is unique because the case law (Supreme Court rulings, for example) concerning the use of outdoor amplification is not well settled. Some district courts have ruled one way while others have ruled the opposite.
In general, the use of amplification is recognized by the courts as being an essential part of our first amendment rights: one must not only be allowed to speak but also to be heard, and amplification allows this to effectively occur with our target audience.
The problem is that amplification runs into obstacles that cities and universities use to restrict its use. For example, one argument against the use of unrestricted amplified sound is that it can bother and annoy people and others affected by its use. Universities use this argument to their advantage by claiming (and sometimes legitimately so) that preachers using amplification interfere with classroom activity.
Again, my case is unique in that it is asking the 9th Circuit Court to rule on this specific issue: can a university forbid the use of any and all amplification by the general public during the weekend at at public, outdoor event when the vendors, musicians, and other paid participants of the event are allowed to do so, even though the public is freely invited with no cost to attend?
I say “no,” and this is the point of controversy.
As of yet, I cannot find a Christian law firm to take my case “pro bono” (for free). This case might literally take years to work its way through the courts. Can I afford hundreds of thousands of dollars in attorney fees to litigate this? Of course not.
The difficulty in finding an experienced first amendment law firm to take my case on a pro bono basis is because of the above mentioned unknowns. I’ve worked with first amendment lawyers long enough to understand they only want to take cases where they are assured of victory; then, the losing side pays all the bills incurred because of the litigation.
This case is certainly no shoe-in for victory. The attorney I hired at first to take this case (paying him almost $2,000 for next to nothing; I let him go) gave best odds at 60/40 in my favor. As he delved more closely into the case law, he lowered the odds to even.
These are some of the reasons I decided to file this action myself with no attorney representing me. I have a fair amount of experience in fighting my own legal battles and am familiar with much of the court requirements for filing a lawsuit.
But District Court is an animal of a different color. This is Federal Court and not your local justice court or even Superior Court. This will require, and I have already dedicated well over 100 hours into this battle, extensive amounts of time, paperwork, research, and a fair amount of money.
I may lose. If I hired a law firm and lost, I’m out all of their fees; plus, I may have to pay the costs and attorney fees for the State if I lose. This is always an additional risk of these lawsuits.
The kingdom benefits, of course, are huge. A favorable ruling should help open up all public universities for amplified sound, with certain conditions. No longer should God hating, university bureaucrats and police officers be able to bully preachers for using amplified sound unless they can make a strong showing that such sound truly disrupts indoor classroom activity.
I plan of keeping everyone posted on future updates.
I filed my First Amendment lawsuit against the University of AZ today in the United States District Court here in Tucson.
I did this because of my false arrest last year during the annual Tucson Festival of Books while sharing a message about the Bible being the #1 selling book in the world.
The reason I was arrested was because I was using my small amplification system to speak to the crowds of people. And all around me, literally, were many other people amplifying their sound at the exact same moment.
In reality, I was arrested because of WHAT I was saying. As we all know, the only speech not welcomed on college and university campuses across the USA is “bible speech.”
This lawsuit is complicated and technical. Few lawyers specialize in First Amendment law and I could not find one that would represent me “pro bono” (for free). Many law firms do represent Christians like myself pro bono who are illegally arrested like I was, but they want to make sure they win the case so they can have the opposing side pay their attorney fees.
My case is unique: there is no case law that directly addresses my particular set of circumstances. And the cases that address similar issues like mine have had mixed rulings in different districts around the country.
This is one reason why law firms specializing in First Amendment law would be hesitant to take my case; too much ambiguity in the case law.
This is a true “David v. Goliath” situation. I am going up against the power of the State of AZ by myself. They have all the power, all the money, and all the lawyers one could hope for at their disposal. I only have the little bit of brains the Lord gave me and His presence.
If I win, this will set a precedent that will help all open air preachers who wish to use amplification on university and college campuses to do so.
And I want to fight evil and injustice, exactly what has happened to me in this arrest. Don’t you grow weary of Christians who refuse to stand up and fight against the evil that is sweeping across our nation? I certainly do, which is another reason I put this particular stone in my slingshot as I’m approaching Goliath.
In the audio below, Zack tells his story of his involvement with the “Elohim Academy,” another name for the “World Mission Society Church of God.”
Religious cults abound in the world today, but their dangers to a person’s soul is usually overlooked.
Consider, for example, cults like the Hare Krishna’s or the World Mission Society Church of God (WMSCOG). Both of these groups worship as God man made religious objects (the Hare Krishna’s do this) or people (the WMSCOG does this).
The WMSCOG worships two people as God: a south Korean woman known as “Zang Gil-ja” and her dead husband, “Ahn Sahng-hong.”
I want to stop here and let this sink into your spirit for a moment: they literally worship two human beings as “God.” And one of these two people, Zang Gil-ja, is alive today. For people living in the United States or another western European nation, this is unheard of, so bizarre that it cannot possibly be true.
Unfortunately, it is true, and there is nothing more soul-damming and eternally disastrous than to lead someone into idolatry.
But what does the Bible teach? The first commandment of the Ten Commandments, found in Exodus 20:1-17 commands this: “I am the Lord your God who brought you up out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. You shall have no other gods besides (or before) Me.” These deceivers of the WMSCOG never tell new recruits they worship this woman as “god the mother,” nor do they tell new recruits they also worship her deceased husband, Ahn Sahng-hong, as “god the father.”
Most people do not thoroughly read the Bible—if they read it at all. If they did, they would know that worshipping a mere man and/or a woman is idolatry, an abomination in the eyes of the living and true God. Cursed is the man or woman who offers any mere human only that which God Himself demands and is worthy of. Read the entire 13th chapter of the Old Testament book of Deuteronomy. In this chapter you will discover what happens to people who tempt others to worship anything or anyone other than the one true God.
I wish to highlight the following verses, 6-11, from this important chapter:
“If your brother, the son of your mother, or your son or your daughter or the wife you embrace or your friend who is as your own soul entices you secretly, saying, ‘Let us go and serve other gods,’ which neither you nor your fathers have known, some of the gods of the peoples who are around you, whether near you or far off from you, from the one end of the earth to the other, you shall not yield to him or listen to him, nor shall your eye pity him, nor shall you spare him, nor shall you conceal him. But you shall kill him. Your hand shall be first against him to put him to death, and afterward the hand of all the people. You shall stone him to death with stones, because he sought to draw you away from the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. And all Israel shall hear and fear and never again do any such wickedness as this among you.” (ESV)
In the Old Testament, the penalty for leading someone into idolatry was death. And this death penalty was enforced even against those who were closest to the person who was to stone them: wives, sons, daughters, best friends, etc.
Do you see how serious God is against the sin of idolatry? Since this is true, plainly revealed in His eternal Word, what does this teach about the teachers and leaders of the WMSCOG who instruct and lead others to worship Zang Gil-ja and her dead husband, Ahn Sahng-hong?
These cults are evil. It matters not how “nice” and “friendly” or “loving” they come across—they are out to destroy your eternal soul in the everlasting flames of hell.
Woe to these people! Woe to these leaders who go to any length to recruit new people into their cult. On the day of Judgment, God will judge these people the harshest.
If you have been deceived by these two groups, I urge you to flee and get as far away from them as is possible. And you must repent before God of your abominable idolatry of worshipping mere humans as God, begging Him to forgive you.
This is the most serious business one can be involved in, friends. If you are reading this page, it is my opinion that God has led you here for a reason and a purpose. And part of that reason is clear: to convict you of your sin of idolatry by being involved in these groups and to repent of your sin and get your life right before Him.
I would like to hear from you. Please don’t leave a comment below or in the comments section because I receive so much spam that I delete all comments en masse without reading them.
Instead, go back to the video that linked to this page and leave your comments there. Here is one of my videos that may have brought you here:
Our lives are consumed with deadly distractions. And the word “deadly” is not used flippantly or carelessly but chosen with great care.
You won’t understand what I mean by this until you read what Jesus said in Luke 12:35-48. I’m reading from the English Standard Version.
Verse 35 says, “Stay dressed for action and keep your lamps burning…” In the context of the rest of the passage through verse 40, Jesus is referring to a typical and traditional Jewish wedding feast of His days. Then, it seems, a rich man’s household servants were expected to follow certain protocols, such as what he expected them to do when he returned from the wedding feast.
One of these protocols was that the master expected his servants to be waiting for him to open the door when he returned from the wedding feast where he had been in attendance. Since this feast was held during the nighttime, it would be dark when the master returned.
Electricity had not yet been discovered, so the master would be returning to a dark home. It was the duty of the servants to not only have lamps burning for the master’s safe entrance into his own property, but that these servants would immediately open the door when the master knocked.
This is where the “deadly distractions” come into play for us modern Americans. Our days are so consumed by distractions that virtually none of use would be ready, metaphorically speaking, if our master (the Lord Jesus), returned this very evening.
Perhaps the biggest modern distraction is our smart phones, tablets and computers. It seems we are constantly using one of these three devices. In fact, they have become, for many people, necessary to get through our days. Without them, we would be lost, unable to function in a society that is becoming increasingly dependent upon being connected to the “internet of things.”
And as the importance of these mobile devices rises in our lives, the deadlier they become: they distract us from the most critical aspect of our existence: being ready to have lamps burning when the Master returns and opening the door the instant He knocks.
Does anyone even think along such lines? When was the last time you discussed whether or not you, your family members, or any of your friends were “waiting” for the Master to return? It is not part of the daily fabric or reality of our lives, in the same way we don’t think about feeding and watering our horses so that they will be fit and ready for us to ride tomorrow to work or school.
In the same way that technology made the riding and caring of horses obsolete and irrelevant to functioning in modern society, the rise of the digital age is making increasingly connected individuals seemingly immune to the second return of the Lord Jesus. At the very least, this constant connectivity distracts us from thinking about it.
Allow me to ask the question a second time: are you ready? Is the daily, permanent mindset of your existence focused on being “ready” for your Master upon His return? Do you have your “lamps burning” so that not only you will be able to see in the dark, but can provide “light” for the Master to safely enter His own domain?
Is your state of preparedness so fine tuned and planned out that the instant you hear the knock of your Master, your hand is unlocking the door and He can enter without waiting for you to fumble around in the dark in search of the key or a lamp to lighten the premises?
Jesus said, “Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes (37).”
What is the opposite of being “blessed”? If one is “blessed” for being ready, what is that person’s condition if he or she is not ready? It’s obvious: they are not blessed (see verses 45-48). Worse, they may even be cursed. Whatever the ultimate ramifications are for not being ready, it will not be a pleasant condition to find oneself in.
I want to urge you to “Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you–unless, of course, you fail the test?” (2 Cor. 13:5)
Perhaps one way to determine whether or not your are truly a child of God—whether you are one of His children or not—is the state of your readiness for His return. If you can honestly evaluate yourself on this point, if you fail the test, no doubt one of the reasons will be is because you are consumed with “deadly distractions.”
I’m reading the Obergefell v. Hodges ruling which legalized same-sex marriage, paying particular attention to the dissent portion. The dissent is excellent and all should take the time to read it.
One point brought up concerned the disastrous Dred Scott decision of 1857 which ruled that black people were property of their Southern masters.
Justice Roberts, in his dissent, wrote on page 12 that the “Dred Scott’s holding was overruled on the battlefields of the Civil War and by constitutional amendment after Appomattox…”
In essence, it took a Civil War and the loss of over 600,000 American lives to correct that infamous ruling.
But what, in your opinion, has more importance to our American way of life: slavery or the concept of marriage? Though we all agree that slavery as practiced in our country was a great evil, was that institution—slavery—as important to the continued health of the nation as the institution of marriage?
Clearly not; marriage is the far greater and more important institution because our survival as a nation depends on it: marriage “…forms “the foundation of the family and of society, without which there would be neither civilization nor progress…” (Roberts in his dissent, pg. 7)
Here is the frightening paradox: Americans fought and died in a bloody, destructive Civil War to right the wrongs of the evil and misguided Dred Scott decision, but what is America’s attitude toward the far more injurious and potentially catastrophic ruling of Obergefell v. Hodges? Mostly, “business as usual.” On to the next problem.
And this is the crux of our problem in America: we have lost our moral compass, and we cannot see, or we refuse to see, where our priorities as a nation lie. We no longer have an ever growing army of influential single-minded men and women of God who see things clearly, who, like John the Baptist, call the wicked King Herod to repentance for his unlawful marriage to his brother’s wife.
We lack men of conviction in America today, fearless men, men who will not compromise with the fickle world and who are wholly divorced from the allurements and temptations of that world with all of its charms, pleasures and conveniences, who will fearlessly and unreservedly call this erring nation to repentance.
We will not have a Civil War to overturn Obergefell v. Hodges. We never did for Roe v. Wade, so why for Obergefell? Because the very heart and soul of America is rotten and compromised, drunk with ease and luxuries, fixated on the natural and temporal, we have no leaders to lead us, no men we can look up to and say, “I will follow you to the death because you represent all that is good, righteous and holy.” We thought that way about George Washington, didn’t we? Where are the Washington’s today?
Football season begins soon, and the attention of America will forget all about Obergefell v. Hodges as we root, cheer, debate, party and fight over who is the best football team this year.
But there is another sound most of us fail to hear, and this is the rumbling of the distant thunder of God’s wrath and judgment as it rolls across this land in an awful magnificence, increasing in might and fury as it draws closer and closer until suddenly, the downpour falls.
America will not—America cannot—survive this evil Obergefell v. Hodges ruling. And unfortunately, we as a nation are refusing to wake up and see how near our national disaster looms.
My latest video is now on Youtube:
As usual, I get many comments from viewers; some are excellent and offer a perspective on JW’s that I had not thought about.
For example, this one (it is crude and profane in some parts, but I will post it verbatim because it has educational value):
“For a WITNESS to ALL the nations, and then the end will come… Lol.
“So it’s “OK” to say to a jehovah’s witness when they come to your door; ; “I know where you’re leading with this,you’re trying to subvert my thinking, and i’m not going to listen”. (basically f.u.) And to think that they listen to demonstrations in their convention on how to talk to people in “the preaching WORK”! ( under fear to earn salvation) – but won’t talk to someone asking questions about their own magazine.
“Attention jehovah’s witnesses; Do You need any more evidence that this to see you poor bastards are brainwashed,held captive by fear (of men) and are taught to HATE? Remember “Imitate the Christ” assembly? Is condemning people like this by judging their motives Christ like? It’s not even polite.”
He makes some excellent points which I failed to notice. For example, when he points out that the JW at 0:45 talks about me trying to “subvert” his thinking, this shows the hypocrisy of this organization in a clear way. JW’s knock on our doors wanting us to give them an audience so they can “subvert” our thinking, but won’t allow us to return the favor.
JW’s can dish it out but they can’t take it; they are so brainwashed by the Governing Body that they won’t allow somebody like myself to ask them a question about their own magazine.
How can a question about their own magazine subvert their thinking? And this particular JW, like all the others, would not allow me to ask the question before I was immediately rebuffed and told, like the other JW, to go “convert the bush.”
Can you JW’s reading this post see the hypocrisy of your organization? Do you see how embarrassing your rude behavior is to the outside world? Would Jesus have told me to go talk to the bush and try to convert it?
One of the problems with JW’s is that you are so full of yourselves, of such a proud and arrogant spirit, that you cannot smell the stench of your own spiritual body odor. And you walk around wondering why few people want to talk to you, why we don’t answer our doors on Saturdays, because when we get around you we can’t help gagging and puking on your BO; we run from you as if you had the Ebola virus hanging from your bodies like rotten fruit.
Spiritual pride goes hand in hand with spiritual blindness. You call people who disagree with your wacky doctrines “opposers,” and when we slam doors in your faces you smile, walk away and quote Matthew 5:11-12:
“Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.” (NIV)
You get doors slammed in your faces and people who “oppose” you because you are religious hypocrites, spread false doctrines, and ruin families. It has nothing to do with being persecuted for the sake of righteousness…nothing at all.