PHILADELPHIA (AP) – The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania has sued on behalf of a man whose company name – “I Choose Hell Productions” – was rejected by the state.
Filmmaker George Kalman’s request in 2007 to register as a business was turned down because of a state law prohibiting names that contain blasphemy or profanity.
The lawsuit filed Wednesday against Pennsylvania’s Department of State contends the statute is unconstitutional because it relies on religious standards and violates Kalman’s freedom of speech rights.
Kalman says he chose the name because he believes it is better to struggle through difficult times – that is, live in “hell” – than to commit suicide.
The lawsuit seeks undetermined damages and use of the name.