45

The comments have already pointed out that the President of the United States is still a citizen, and all of the rights of a citizen are still protected for them. Additionally, the Administration is allowed to take policy positions which are antagonistic to a person or group's cause, even if that group is practicing their rights to express their views ...


34

In most of the United States, the answer is yes. The First Amendment protects your freedom of speech from government interference, not from private interference. You don't have to be friends with someone who says "war sucks," and you can kick someone out of your house for opposing the invasion of Libya. But corporations enjoy mostly the same First Amendment ...


28

Yes, A First Amendment defense would apply. This is no longer a crime. Schacht In Schacht vs. United States, 398 U.S. 58 (1970) the US Supreme Court held the final clause of 10 USC 772(f) unconstitutional on just this ground. In that case anti-war protesters rehearsed and performed a skit in which soldiers shot and killed a character dressed as a member ...


14

No. The Fourteenth Amendment says: nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; The Supreme Court has determined that this clause incorporates much of the Bill of Rights. The logic is mildly tortured, but it's basically that "due process of law" means "due process of a law that is compatible with the ...


13

Private entities are not restricted by the First Amendment. The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is: 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 press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for ...


12

Assuming that the documents were either true, or Manning reasonably believed that they were true, there would be no cause of action for defamation. Many of the documents disclosed would have been confidential in some sense, but usually a violation of a confidentiality statute has a criminal sanction associated with it, but does not carry with it a private ...


12

"Contempt of Congress" does not extend, in a legal sense, to insulting Congress as a whole, one house, a committee chair, or a member. (Congress and its committees have power to require both members and witnesses to abide by its rules of decorum, which forbid such insults, but as far as I know the remedy is merely to remove the disorderly person.) Contempt ...


11

Everson v. Board of Education applied the establishment clause of the 1st amendment to state law. Applying the Bill of Rights to state law is known as incorporation as in, incorporating the Bill of Rights to the states. It has had some controversy as reflected in U.S. Supreme Court decisions as to how, which and when specific amendments are or were ...


11

Where the President explicitly tells a newspaper that they should reveal their sources. Is this not illegal in the US? It is not illegal. Well, it would be a U.S. Attorney, rather than the President himself. You're thinking of shield laws, but no such law exists at the federal level. Moreover, although some people might think that the First Amendment ("...


11

There's no law against him saying the paper should name the source, nor is there any law against directly asking the paper to name its source. The president was at a campaign rally, and his speech is protected by the same First Amendment that protects the New York Times. At the federal level, the paper could be forced to reveal the source, but it would have ...


10

False statements are generally protected by the First Amendment. If the video was an obvious gag or work of fiction, in which a reasonable person would understand that you were not truly endorsed, your false statement would almost certainly be protected by the First Amendment. But many false statements are not protected, typically because of their negative ...


9

Is this true? The word "employers" suggests that he's using the word institution to include businesses. Yes. So can a person working for a grocery store or drugstore be fired for saying "I didn't support the invasion of Libya" or wearing a shirt that says "War sucks"? Yes. Virtually all of the rights in the federal constitution are only protected ...


9

If I want to protest for or against President Trump and decide to wear a Trump mask, isn't that speech protected by the first amendment? Probably. The matter of intent, in any event, is for a court to decide (if the prosecutor determines that the question should even be presented to a court). For example, someone seeking to rob a bank in a mask would ...


9

Is this illegal? No, subject to some possible narrow exceptions discussed below. Do the social media companies have a duty under the First Amendment to not censor users? No. Indeed, usually, there is greater liability exposure for failing to censor content, for example, by failing to honor a "take down notice" under Title II of the Digital ...


8

That definition still applies, at least in federal law. Under 18 USC 2256: “child pornography” means any visual depiction ... indistinguishable from that of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct But the First Amendment limits its applicability in cases like Sabrina. In Ashcroft v. Free Speech Coalition, 535 U.S. 234 (2002), the Supreme Court held ...


8

In that case, Cruise-Gulyas was subject to a second stop, and the court found that the second stop was an illegal seizure. There is no qualified immunity since this was an exercise of a clearly established First Amendment right. The authority to seize her ended when the first stop ended. The finger is not a basis for a stop, since it does not violate any law ...


7

Trivially, yes The first amendment was adopted on December 15, 1791. Every time there has been a dispute about what it means that has gone to court since then, the judgement of that court has established, overturned or clarified precedent - that's what common law courts do. The government can limit your speech The Supreme Court has recognized categories ...


6

If you are charged under the laws of Estonia (or Australia or Thailand or the UK) then the laws of the USA have no relevance whatsoever. It makes no difference if you are a US citizen, if the alleged crime happened in the USA or was perpetrated against the USA. If nation X has jurisdiction then you are tried under the laws of nation X. That is what ...


6

As for the ex post facto question, an ex post facto law is one that makes an act illegal when it was legal at the time of the commission. Let's now look at the clause: (b) Effective date.—The amendments made by this section shall take effect on the date of the enactment of this Act, and the amendment made by subsection (a) shall apply regardless of ...


6

Sometimes In general, intentionally false speech gets less protection than other speech, and in some cases it is unprotected. The classic example of speech that is unprotected is "Falsely shouting FIRE in a crowded theater". Note that this is both intentionally false and highly likely to be seriously harmful to multiple uninvolved people. On the other hand,...


5

Defamation that is actionable in court in the United States consists of a false statement about a presently existing fact that damages your reputation and is not a matter of opinion. While not strictly required in a case involving private parties that is not a matter of public concern, most defamation cases require proof that the false statement was made ...


5

The powers of the President are contained in Article II of the constitution; this is a fair summary. The power to make executive orders stems from Section 1 "The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America." When the Supreme Court considers the legality of an executive order (which only happens when someone brings a case ...


5

Basically, the author is saying that if the First Amendment were interpreted in the way described, as an all-purpose shield -- and therefore, journalists were not subject to libel laws, and could not be searched or deposed -- then journalists, being all but above the law at that point, would have a tremendous amount of power. There would need to be checks ...


5

This feels like a political hit job carried out by the courts rather than the wheels of justice doing their thing. The wheels of justice are doing their thing; the answer and legal reasoning is in the court transcript, as quoted and commented on by a news source: see Michael Cohen raid and first day in court. Transcript: 04/16/2018. The Rachel Maddow Show | ...


5

Both Trump and Kaepernick have free speech rights involved, so it isn't a free speech issue so long as it sticks to two people yelling at each other. The applicable statute is 18 US Code 227. Is Trump a 'covered person' under this statute? Yes. Was he trying to influence an employment decision or practice by a private entity? Absolutely. But is it 'solely ...


5

You are correct that the existence of a lawsuit -- on First Amendment or Fifth Amendment grounds -- is not a strong basis for believing that Acosta will have his pass reinstated. People file losing lawsuits all the time. But that doesn't really tell us anything about the merits of his case, which I discuss below. Temporary restraining order: The standard ...


5

The full text of the Virginia law can be found at https://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/title18.2/chapter9/section18.2-422/ Ther are more or less similar laws in several other states. The Virginia law was challenged on precisely the grounds suggested in the question by a member of the Ku Klux Klan who was wearing full regalia, including hood and mask, while ...


4

The First Amendment does not guarantee a right to not be offended. However, as held in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, 319 U.S. 624 (1943), it does prohibit compelled speech, and a person cannot be compelled to recite the pledge. The basis is not religion: this is a general prohibition on what the government can do. ("Parental consent" ...


4

There's an interesting philosophical debate you can have. By the plain text of the First Amendment, it protects libel. Aside: Yes, the First Amendment does apply to libel cases. A libel case, like all lawsuits, involves the government's judicial branch using its coercive power to make you pay money as a result of your speech, based on a law requiring you to ...


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