From Rhode Island-
A federal magistrate judge is recommending that a lawsuit brought against the attorney general, the Catholic Bishop Thomas Tobin and others over the tolling of church bells be dismissed.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Patricia A. Sullivan advised a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit filed by John Devaney alleging that the chimes of nearby St. Thomas More Catholic Parish and St. Peter’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church were denying him the peaceful enjoyment of his home and had helped precipitate the demise of his 23-year marriage. Devaney counted 700 “claps” and “gongs” each week, more than 36,000 throughout the past 13 years.
Sullivan quoted poet Ezra Pound in issuing her recommendation to Senior U.S. District Judge Ronald R. Lagueux: “The act of bell ringing is symbolic of all proselytizing religions. It implies the pointless interference with the quiet of other people.”
Like Pound, Devaney, who chose to represent himself, “is deeply disturbed by the tintinnabulation of the church bells emanating” from churches in his Narragansett neighborhood, Sullivan wrote.
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