ISKCON banned from soliciting at Los Angeles Airport


Washington, DC: In a setback to International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), the California Supreme Court has ruled as illegal soliciting being done by the Hare Krishna members at the busy Los Angeles airport.
The California Supreme Court on March 25 upheld a Los Angeles ordinance that makes it illegal to ask  for money on the sidewalks and in the terminals of Los Angeles International Airport, San Francisco Chronicle reported.
David Liberman, an attorney for the ISKCON, called the court’s decision “disgusting” and predicted that it would encourage shopping centers and other similar forums to ban soliciting.
“They finally get rid of the Hare Krishnas, which is what they wanted to do all along,” Liberman was quoted as saying by The Los Angeles Times said.
David Liberman, told the San Francisco Chronicle that the said fundraising in many areas of the airport – sidewalks, arrival areas, food courts – could easily be done without disrupting pedestrian traffic or hampering security.
He said the ruling would be devastating for the ISKCON.
The Christian Science Monitor said the ISKCON’s legal trail has stretched back over two decades.
In 1992, ISKCON brought suit against New York City airports claiming that a ban on solicitation in terminals violated their First Amendment right to free speech.
After winning in district court and losing in circuit court, ISKCON lost its case in the US Supreme Court, it said.
The Supreme Court ruled 6 to 3 that the city’s prohibition was constitutional because an airport terminal is not a “public forum.”

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