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First Amendment

Don't Tread On Me (Or My Bumper): The Latest License Plate Debate

Jessica Peck | Posted 05.25.2011 | Denver
Jessica Peck

What's the problem with the state (and some pretty worthy non-profits too) making a few bucks off a fun specialty license plate? Well, as it turns out, a lot.

Media McDonalds: The Mental Starvation of Americans Fat on Junk Food News & Media

Brian Ross | Posted 05.25.2011 | Media
Brian Ross

OPINION - Rupert Murdoch, owner of Fox News and Fox TV is to the media business what Ray Kroc, McDonalds founder, was to the restaurant biz: A purveyo...

Colleges Should Have Faith in Religious Speech

Adam Goldstein | Posted 05.25.2011 | College
Adam Goldstein

One of the unusual aspects of student speech law is that some problems are seasonal. For example, showdowns over high school yearbook themes tend to h...

Most Schools Violate Student Free Speech Rights: FIRE Study

Posted 05.25.2011 | College

Two thirds of colleges maintain speech codes that violate students' First Amendment rights, according to a new report released by the Foundation for I...

WikiLeaks and the Rule of Law in the United States

Rebecca Buckwalter-Poza | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Rebecca Buckwalter-Poza

Assange has not been denied free speech. He has not been silenced or persecuted by government actors but rather arrested on pre-existing rape allegations, an arrest obligated by the notoriety he attracted to himself.

Stolen Valor Act May Go To Supreme Court After

AP | DAN ELLIOTT | Posted 05.25.2011 | Denver

DENVER — The Justice Department is battling to save a federal law that makes it illegal to lie about being a war hero, appealing two court rulin...

Media Lit 101: WikiLeaks -- Espionage or Journalism?

Susan Moeller | Posted 05.25.2011 | Media
Susan Moeller

As the world media debates whether Julian Assange is a cyber-terrorist or the next Daniel Ellsberg, and the U.S. government scrambles to stop his next classified data dump, many of the best outlets to educate the public on the matter are closing up shop.

Nobel Challenge: Struggle for Human Rights in China Must Be Broad & Sustained

Brian Levin, J.D. | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Brian Levin, J.D.

America and the world must not stand idly by and allow China's contravention of basic human rights -- as exemplified by the imprisonment of Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo -- to be a costless offense.

From Jefferson to Assange

Robert Scheer | Posted 05.25.2011 | Media
Robert Scheer

It is outrageous for any journalist, or respecter of what every American president has claimed is our inalienable, God-given right to a free press, not to join in Assange's defense on the WikiLeaks issue.

Instigation Not Mitigation: The Failures in the Responses to WikiLeaks

Christina Gagnier | Posted 05.25.2011 | Technology
Christina Gagnier

The United States government, Amazon, PayPal and the myriad of other players who I am sure will become tangled up in the dissemination of the WikiLeaks' cables could benefit from a simple piece of advice: play it cool.

How to Really Prevent the Next Wikileaks Episode

Martin London | Posted 05.25.2011 | World
Martin London

I recently read a blog post by a distinguished First Amendment lawyer of the view that once the cables were leaked, the U.S. was helpless to act because all prior restraints on publication are a violation of the First Amendment. Baloney.

Why WikiLeaks Is Good for Democracy

Bill Quigley | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Bill Quigley

Information is the lifeblood of democracy. By labeling tens of millions of documents secret, the US government has created a huge vacuum of information.

Judge Maintains Ruling Against Oklahoma Shariah Ban

Posted 05.25.2011 | Religion

By Omar Sacirbey Religion News Service (RNS) A federal judge on Monday (Nov. 29) issued a temporary injunction against an Oklahoma referendum that so...

Bill to Ban Animal Crush Videos Passes Congress, on to President Obama

Wayne Pacelle | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Wayne Pacelle

Today, the U.S. Senate gave final congressional approval to legislation to ban the creation, sale and distribution of obscene animal crush videos, the...

Online Seizure and Counterfeit Bill: Burning the House to Roast the Pig

Christina Gagnier | Posted 05.25.2011 | Technology
Christina Gagnier

While the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act has been touted as a way to combat counterfeiting online worldwide, its overly excessive means will surely cause harm beyond posing a threat to free speech.

Unplug WikiLeaks? Enact a Federal Shield Law Instead

Peter Scheer | Posted 05.25.2011 | Media
Peter Scheer

How would a shield law -- a version of which has passed the House and awaits a vote by the full Senate -- put WikiLeaks out of business? The answer is that it would remove the need that WikiLeaks fills.

Gay Pride, Straight Pride -- What's the Difference?

Steve Nelson | Posted 05.25.2011 | Education
Steve Nelson

As the head of a school, I occasionally deal with student matters where Constitutional rights are invoked as a defense. Sometimes I invite them to do a little research on rights of secondary school students.

Academic Freedom is Not Protected by the First Amendment

David Moshman | Posted 05.25.2011 | Education
David Moshman

We should be clear from the start that academic freedom is not simply a First Amendment right. Academic freedom is intellectual freedom in academic contexts.

Colorado Campaign Finance Law Ruled Unconstitutional By 10th Circuit Court Of Appeals

AP | P. SOLOMON BANDA | Posted 05.25.2011 | Denver

DENVER — A federal appellate court ruled Tuesday that requiring small groups who promote ballot initiatives to file campaign finance reports is ...

Supreme Court Wrestles Over Religious Scholarship Program

Posted 05.25.2011 | Religion

By Adelle M. Banks Religion News Service WASHINGTON (RNS) Is a state law that allows tax credits for donations to scholarship programs unconstitution...

The Political Marketplace

Jay Mandle | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Jay Mandle

Political ideas that do not attract wealthy advocates are effectively marginalized -- not because they are banned, but because they are not heard.

Why Do Ken Buck and the Republican Taliban Hate America?

Michael J.W. Stickings | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Michael J.W. Stickings

Ken Buck, the Colorado Republican who thinks that gays are like alcoholics, said last year that he objected to a fundamental principle of American con...

The Separation Of Church And State In American Politics

Nomi M. Stolzenberg | Posted 05.26.2011 | Religion
Nomi M. Stolzenberg

While there is broad agreement that the prohibition on state "establishment" of religion implies some sort of separation between religion and politics, it has always been open to interpretation just what form of separation is required.

Don't Know Much About the 1st Amendment? A Civics Primer

Kenneth C. Davis | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Kenneth C. Davis

Who is the Vice President? How many Senators are there? How many Supreme Court Justices? A new online survey suggests many Americans can't answer tho...

Witch's Brouhaha: Is Christine O'Donnell Right about the First Amendment, Mice and Men?

Dr. Jonathan David Farley | Posted 05.25.2011 | Politics
Dr. Jonathan David Farley

"Where in the Constitution is 'separation of church and state'?" The laughter erupted in the lecture hall, as if this were the studio of the comedy s...