Questions tagged [first-amendment]

First amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Related tags: "freedom-of-speech".

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59
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3answers
11k views

How do I anonymously report the Establishment Clause being broken?

My daughter's public school principal has put up Christian symbols and quotes and also invited a public speaker to present during an assembly who told students that God and prayer was the answer to ...
34
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5answers
17k views

Is the banning of large events in the USA constitutional?

Recently several US cities banned large gatherings of events such as listed here. Given that the 1st amendment of the US constitution states Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment ...
27
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4answers
8k views

Is wearing ACLU's “Let People Vote Pin” to the polling place considered electioneering?

For context, the region I'm in is Sangamon County, Illinois. I ordered an ACLU pin from their shop. I expect it to arrive before November 3rd and I am excited to wear it at the polling place. I am, ...
23
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6answers
7k views

First amendment and employment: Can a police department terminate an officer for speech?

The following article from CNN describes a Michigan police officer being put on administrative leave for having KKK material at his home: https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/10/us/michigan-officer-placed-on-...
23
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1answer
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Is presenting a play showing Military characters in a bad light a crime in the US? Or does the First Admendment prevent this?

This is a followup to Is it illegal to wear military surplus clothing? US Law 10 USC 771 provides that only members of the US military may wear: ...the uniform, or a distinctive part of the ...
22
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3answers
10k views

How are Trump's actions against NFL protesters not a violation of Constitutional rights?

I've been casually following the NFL player protests against injustice in modern America. Often the controversy is centered around players like Colin Kaepernick, whose career seems to be over even ...
18
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3answers
7k views

Can U.S. states establish state religions?

The first amendment says: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the ...
15
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5answers
6k views

Can private institutions fire employees without concern for the First Amendment?

The First Amendment doesn’t apply to private institutions. Private employers can fire employees for their speech without having to worry about the First Amendment. What the NFL’s new rules for ...
15
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4answers
6k views

Is it illegal for a US voter to disclose their ballot choices?

This is a follow-on question from Politics SE, wherein several participants claimed that it was illegal for a voter to divulge their own ballot choices. As this is purely a question of law, rather ...
15
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3answers
4k views

Why would Twitter not be able to flag / annotate / censor any content it sees fit?

https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/executive-order-preventing-online-censorship/ As I understand it, the 1st amendment is to protect 'free speech' from government censorship, not ...
9
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2answers
2k views

Will a contempt of congress lawsuit actually reach the merits?

Hypothetical Scenario: Kellyanne Conway is subpoenaed by the House Oversight committee for Hatch Act violations. Conway appears but tells the chairman that he is a fraudulent partisan grandstander, a ...
8
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1answer
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Constitutionality of more restrictive bans on assembly

Virginia’s governor issued a ‘stay at home order’ that will be enforced by fines, and is in effect until June 10th, unless otherwise revoked. This includes the ban on groups of 10 or more. All public ...
7
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2answers
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Are there any US laws protecting journalistic sources?

I saw the President explicitly tell a newspaper that it should reveal its sources: But for the sake of our national security, the New York Times should publish his name at once. I think their ...
7
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1answer
2k views

Does the 1st Amendment let the government ban an app?

This article says that President Trump will ban the popular apps WeChat and TikTok. On the other hand the Bernstein case established (at least in the 9th Circuit) that computer software is speech. The ...
7
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4answers
5k views

What makes laws against wearing masks constitutional?

Related to this question, "Does a statute of limitation apply to Virginia's mask law?"; how does the law in question pass constitutional muster? The law states: It shall be unlawful for any person ...
6
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1answer
1k views

Can Chelsea Manning be sued in civil court by anyone named in the documents that were leaked?

Since Chelsea Manning's name is in the news, the following question seems interesting: Manning leaked a large set of documents Some of them could have clearly had a negative effect on specific ...
6
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1answer
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Does the 1st Amendment restrict executive actions?

This question is inspired by this Washington Post piece ("Donald Trump is working his way through the 1st Amendment"). Here's the amendment text, emphasis added: Congress shall make no law ...
6
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1answer
571 views

Constitutionality of neighborhood lockdowns and road blocks

Increasingly police in the United States have resorted to "locking down" buildings, blocks and even entire neighborhoods. For example, recently police in Baltimore reacted to a cop getting shot by ...
5
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3answers
548 views

Is the 21st century's idea of “freedom of speech” based on precedent?

Reading the first amendment strictly through a textualist lens it is understood that Congress cannot limit our speech, but the first amendment does not say anything about companies limiting it, or ...
5
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2answers
240 views

What legal reason is there to publicize Michael Cohen's client list?

As a lay person I'm a little shocked at the proceedings with the Michael Cohen raid, as it clearly has some issues with attorney client privilege. While it may have bearing on the court case, and I'...
5
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3answers
203 views

Suspending White House hard pass & preliminary injunction

Jim Acosta was asked by the Secret Service to surrender a White House hard pass as the result of an altercation in a press event. The White House press secretary explained that it being suspended ...
5
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1answer
337 views

When and how is the advocacy of violence illegal?

Today I saw a t-shirt reading "Kill a liberal, save a taxpayer." Also I have heard that the right to free speech does not extend to the right to shout "fire!" in a public theater. But if I did choose ...
5
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3answers
280 views

What is necessary for a newly formed religion to enjoy first amendment protections?

Is it possible to simply declare that you have started a new religion with arbitrary rules, and expect to enjoy all applicable first amendment protections for it? For example, if your religion just ...
5
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1answer
646 views

Have there ever been examples of public school's restriction of community service being unlawful?

My school's community service policy (while ambiguous throughout the whole thing) Seems to me to discriminate against not only religions, but my religion specifically. The particular clause I'm ...
5
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2answers
160 views

To what extent can a public college regulate the speech of its students?

My community college's "Student Rights" webpage states that the College District will not tolerate any discriminatory behavior on the part of its students. Now, I'm not advocating discrimination, but ...
4
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3answers
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Are there legal implications to lying about your sponsors?

Let's say I release a video where I say "sponsored by Company C" even though they never sponsored me. Are there legal implications to lying about that, or is this action protected by the First ...
4
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1answer
756 views

Is “Sabrina” child pornography?

Many years ago I recall hearing (can't exactly remember where/when, but I believe it had to do with a then still very young Brooke Shields) that "Child Pornography" laws applied, even if the actor/...
4
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2answers
438 views

How is it legal for the US miltary to decide to help a film maker based on the script?

According to this article on TV Tropes and this article in The Guardian, the US military will provide facilities to film makers, as well as advice to help them get the details right. However this is ...
4
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1answer
239 views

Are there restrictions on parental rights to limit a minor's association?

At what age does an individual gain the right to associate freely? For example, could parents bar contact with volunteers from a LBGTQ group to a child if the parents were (by ideal/simplified ...
3
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2answers
748 views

How is the “Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017” constitutional?

H.R.1865, known as the "Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act of 2017", recently passed both chambers of Congress and was signed into law by president trump. I'm not a ...
3
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2answers
621 views

Does the U.S. Constitution's First Ammendment protect false speech?

Does the U.S. Constitution's First Ammendment protect false speech? In other words, does it give a citizen or the press a right to spread falsehoods publicly?
3
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3answers
376 views

Public display of swastika in the US

The Nazi swastika evokes emotional (fear, anger); is there a “bright line” in which this symbol crosses that public display of said symbol would result in an arrest in the US? Or is the symbol’s ...
3
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2answers
224 views

Do laws against libel and slander [malice] also apply to incomplete information?

I understand that if somebody posts false information about an individual and if it can be proved that individual had intent to cause malice against the other individual, then that can be brought to ...
3
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3answers
219 views

If you find something indexed on a search engine, is it legal to access and report that to the firm?

I found a US law firm's SQL database indexed on Google exposing email addresses, phone numbers, comments/questions of its clients. Not to mention the user database with even worse information. This is ...
3
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1answer
169 views

Do some U.S. states' constitutions interpret the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment differently?

Do some U.S. states' constitutions interpret the U.S. Constitution's First Amendment differently? If so, what do they say?
3
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5answers
931 views

Can you record a public school official with or without their consent?

Some states such as Massachusetts have 2 party consent laws which restrict secret recordings by only one party, therefore, you have to ask public school officials if they consent to being recorded. ...
3
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7answers
925 views

How can libel laws be consistent with the 1st Amendment?

The 1st Amendment states Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press So how can libel law be constitutional?
3
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1answer
787 views

Is mere dancing in public prohibited in D.C.?

Is mere dancing in public prohibited in D.C.? I.e. is there any statute or by-law that makes dancing in public per se illegal in D.C.? If not, why were these people arrested at the Jefferson ...
3
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2answers
214 views

Can a cop pull you over for flipping them off?

Minard, a police officer in the city of Taylor, Michigan, stopped Cruise-Gulyas in June 2017 for speeding. But he decided to show her leniency and wrote her a ticket for a non-moving violation. As she ...
3
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1answer
243 views

What does “being responsible for the abuse of that right” mean, and is this different from the first amendment?

The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen states: The free communication of thoughts and opinions is one of man’s most precious rights. Every citizen may therefore speak, write and ...
3
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0answers
216 views

Has the “right to assemble” (US 1st Amendment) ever been shown to apply to just two persons?

Has the "right to assemble" (US 1st Amendment) ever been shown to apply to just two persons? I was just wondering if it had ever been applied to as few as two persons. (Or even one person in fact.) ...
3
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3answers
478 views

First Amendment - U.S. Constitution

I understand that the first amendment enshrines freedom of speech. However, can the location where someone speaks pose a limit to this? Is it different between public and private property?
3
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3answers
97 views

Can I use the government's seals and logos without its permission?

Is it permissible to use a governmental seal for editorial purposes in a magazine? For example, in a news story about the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, could I use ATF's logo to accompany ...
3
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3answers
465 views

Does disordely conduct apply when on private property?

Bob is in his home watching TV when he hears a knock on the door. It is the Police and they would like to speak to Bob. They claim that Bob is suspected of a crime and would like him to open the door (...
2
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1answer
147 views

US Federal Laws Pertaining to Banned Books

I've been having trouble with my search for federally banned books. Many searches show books which are banned in local libraries or by the state, but not nationally. The only book I could find that ...
2
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1answer
1k views

I'm being hacked, stalked and gossiped about. Do I have a chance at suing for slander, character assasination?

I am a member of a laid back, everyone's equal, religious organization. Several years ago, a new parson was hired. He is a power seeker, a liar, and a narcissist. He aligned himself with a low but ...
2
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1answer
59 views

Michael Jackson trial and the constitutionality of gag orders

In this page, Wikipedia says that in the Michael Jackson 2005 trial (People v. Jackson) the judge: put a gag order on both sides Erwin Chemerinsky says (link, at the time of 1:53:37) that gag orders ...
2
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2answers
157 views

Is it illegal to lie and say you're under an NDA?

Is lying about being under a non-disclosure agreement illegal? Imagine that A manages a bunch of gaming servers online, and B keeps bugging A for information that A does not want to disclose. If A ...
2
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1answer
120 views

What is considered a reasonable time under the Turner v. Driver case?

Turner v. Driver, No. 16-10312 (5th Cir. 2017), is a 2017 decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit that established a First Amendment right to record the police. The court ...
2
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1answer
174 views

Public Schools and Religion

So today at school (I go to a public high school in Texas) a substitute teacher told a kid to stop saying Jesus Christ. I was wondering if the teacher has the authority to do this? It was clearly for ...