a journal of queer studies

The Equality March: End of Uncertainty: The bans on gay and lesbian demonstrations were illegal

(Gazeta Wyborcza 19 stycznia 2006)

Constitutional Tribunal has ruled

Yesterday everything became clear: neither the views of those in power, nor the potential threat of aggressive counter-demonstrators or traffic disruptions can be legitimate reasons for banning a demonstration. The Constitutional Tribunal, which had been reviewing a complaint filed by the Commissioner for Civil Rights Protection, ruled that freedoms guaranteed by the constitution cannot be contingent on obtaining an official permission.

Judge Mirosław Wyrzykowski accused the Speaker of the Lower House of Parliament of making a false claim that the freedom of peaceful assembly is a right rather than a freedom and is thus subject to more legal and administrative restrictions than, for example, a pilgrimage.

The Constitutional Tribunal ruling is binding. All this suggests that the numerous demonstrations organized by LGBT groups have been very successful. Asked by the editors of Gazeta Wyborcza to comment on the Tribunal’s decision, Robert Biedroł, leader of the Campaign Against Homophobia, stated: “This ruling restores normalcy. The reanimation of democracy was successful.”
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