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The High Price Of Free Speech

A Vietnamese shopkeeper's free speech statement has escalated into another clash with protesters. Truong Van Tran was pelted with eggs as he attempted to open his business on Monday. Tran was escorted away by police, but no arrests were made.

Tran has refused to remove a communist flag and a poster of Ho Chi Minh from his video store in Little Saigon here, angering local residents.

CBS News Correspondent Manuel Gallegus reports that Tran claims he is not a communist and that he is only exercising his right to free speech.

"Nothing is more important than liberty," Tran said. "Ho Chi Minh said that."

Tran has said he put up the flag and the poster of the late communist leader because he wanted to encourage Vietnamese to view their homeland in a new way.

Protesters have gathered outside Tran's HiTek store since mid-January, when residents learned about the display inside. A judge initially ordered him to take down the items but then reversed her decision.

Tran, who was slapped or punched at least twice in previous confrontations with protesters, re-hung the flag and poster in his store on Feb. 20 as 200 police officers protected him. There were 1,500 demonstrators outside the shop.

Since Monday's confrontation, Tran has been evicted from his shop for not paying back rent.

As of last week, police overtime to keep peace at the store has cost the city $109,000, according to Lt. Bill Lewis.