Controversial New Mexico abortion billboard to remain: judge
Alamogordo, NM, August 1, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) – A local judge in New Mexico has ruled in favor of a man’s right to keep displaying a billboard with a controversial message against abortion.
New Mexico District Judge James Waylon Counts has ruled that Greg Fultz can keep his billboard along a town thoroughfare for now, the Associated Press reported last week. Counts has called for a full hearing after the man appealed an earlier decision that he immediately take down the billboard.
In May, Fultz put up a billboard that shows him holding the outline of an infant. The text reads, “This Would Have Been A Picture Of My 2-Month-Old Baby If The Mother Had Decided To Not KILL Our Child!”
Fultz’s contract with the billboard company will expire August 15.
The woman implicated in the billboard has taken Fultz to court for harassment and violation of privacy. In late June, Fultz was ordered to remove the sign as part of an order of protection against the woman. A previous Domestic Violence court commissioner also stated that the billboard must be taken down.
Fultz’s attorney Todd Holmes cites the recent Supreme Court decision in favor of the Westboro Baptist Church, notorious for its anti-gay rallies and protesting at military funerals. The court ruled that the activities are protected by the First Amendment’s right to free speech.
Right to Life New Mexico, whose logo appears on the billboard, originally endorsed the effort. However, they pulled their endorsement when they discovered that Fultz was unsure whether his ex-girlfriend had an abortion or miscarriage.
In an interview with LifeSiteNews, the Right to Life Committee of New Mexico’s State President Betty Eichenseer noted that the billboard has garnered national attention.
“We received inquiries from MSN, Fox News, and Reuters,” she said.
But Eichenseer contradicted Fultz’s claim that the billboard simply supports father’s rights in an abortion decision. Instead, she said, the billboard is a statement about “a relationship between two particular people, rather than a statement about men and abortion.”
Fultz claims his ex-girlfriend was pregnant with his child during their six-month relationship last year. He admits that when the relationship ended, the baby was lost, but he doesn’t know how it happened.
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