In a landmark decision handed down last week, the Supreme Court ruled that a 40-foot Christian cross located on public land in Bladensburg, Maryland does not violate the separation of church and state. The 7-2 Court was highly fractured in its ruling; five concurring opinions were written. Justice Alito, writing for the plurality, argued that … Continue reading NEWSFLASH! 6/10-6/24
By: Clarke Martin You’d be hard-pressed to find an attorney who would characterize their client’s membership in a gang (street, motorcycle, prison, or otherwise) as a “good fact.” But what is a gang and why is being part of one such a bad omen for charges and prosecutions to come? Social scientists note that gangs … Continue reading What’s in a Gang? That Which We Call a Gang By Any Other Name Would Smell As Sweet.
We're nearing the first day of summer! Here is some First Amendment news to begin the new season! As was noted in an earlier Newsflash!, a family bakery in Oberlin, Ohio brought a libel lawsuit against Oberlin College earlier this year. An altercation between one of the bakery’s white employees and a black patron resulted … Continue reading NEWSFLASH! 5/27-6/10
Last week, Julian Assange was indicted on 17 violations of the Espionage Act, a federal law that prohibits interference with United States military operations and support for enemies in times of war. In 2010, Assange published secret government documents on his website, Wikileaks, and now faces federal prosecution. Scholars have noted that the Espionage Act … Continue reading NEWSFLASH! 5/13-5/27
By: Olivia Perry Vice President Pence’s wife, Karen, recently made the news for accepting a part-time teaching position at a Christian private school with a controversial anti-LGBT stance. The school makes its stance very clear. Specifically, it requires prospective employees to disavow gay marriage and the trans community in a pledge: “I understand that the … Continue reading Discrimination 101: Vouchers, LGBT Students, and the First Amendment
Happy Monday! Here is your latest First Amendment News! The ACLU has filed a lawsuit against Department of Homeland Security alleging that border agents are warrantlessly searching travelers’ electronic devices in violation of their Fourth and First Amendment rights. In a motion for summary judgement, the organization claims that such searches have the potential to chill speech because … Continue reading NEWSFLASH! 4/29-5/13
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Hope everyone is having a wonderful Monday! Here is the latest First Amendment news! Donald Trump Beats Lawsuit Over Hacked DNC Emails Despite Losing First Amendment Argument The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit ruled that a police officer cannot pull over a driver for inappropriate gestures. North Carolina’s newly elected sheriff’s are … Continue reading Newsflash!
By: Christopher Eddy Introduction The Supreme Court’s recent decision in National Institute of Family & Life Advocates v. Becerra (“NIFLA”) dealt with “professional speech.” Specifically, the Court decided if professional speech constituted a separate class of speech and was entitled to less protection under the First Amendment. The law at issue was California’s FACT Act … Continue reading WHAT IS A “NONCONTROVERSIAL” TOPIC AND WHY DOES IT MATTER TO PROFESSIONAL SPEECH?