Reading books in public is supposed to be a freedom that everyone get to enjoy. All sorts of books including the Holy Bible. However, that will not be the case anymore for believers residing in Tennessee.
According to reports, Paul Johnson, a grandfather and resident of Sweetwater, Tennessee, was approached by authorities when he was caught reading his Bible on the sidewalk. His attorneys said that Johnson has been banned now from doing such activity as it has been ruled that he cannot read the word of God without a permit.
“I was shocked that a city had a law banning anyone from reading the Bible on a public sidewalk without the city’s permission,” said Johnson in a statement. “All I want to do is tell people about the love of Jesus by reading my Bible, but I was worried I might be arrested if I tried.”
His lawyers stated that his constitutional rights are being violated. Johnson wasn’t even bothering anyone when he was in the public sidewalk. “Because he can’t go into the mission field and go to all the world to preach the Gospel, he does that anywhere nearby that he can,” Chelsey Youman, counsel for First Liberty, told CBN News. His request to obtain permit has also been subsequently rejected.
“So essentially, the city of Sweetwater, Tennessee, bans all public expression on any of their public sidewalks, which is unconstitutional.”
What do you think of this issue? Would you agree with this?