Category Archives: Freedom of Speech
Essays on Freedom of Speech
The 2nd Circuit Court ruled this past week that citizens united (yes, that Citizen’s United) must turn over its donor lists to the Attorney General of the State of New York.
Citizen’s United had argued that donations to the organization represented anonymous political speech, and therefore the state had no reason to have a law requiring that they turn these lists over to them. The state argued that such information is necessary to prevent fraud by non-profits and donors seeking to influence the politics of the State. Read the rest of this entry
In 44bce, following the death of Julius Cæsar, Mark Anthony wasn’t really impressing people in Rome with his leadership and management. Despite his inspiring speech at Cæsars funeral pyre, he was basically making a pigs breakfast of things.
Opposing him was Cicero. Here was a Constitutionalist, a leader and a man of words. And it was to words which Cicero turned in his very public condemnation and criticism of Anthony. He delivered a series of fourteen speeches, known as the Phillipics, in which he rips Anthony for everything from his management to his dalliances with women (even one beneath his station) and even implies that Anthony might be, just possibly, at least once or maybe twice, homosexual. Read the rest of this entry
The Espionage act of 1917
On this day, Yom Hashoah, we recall the millions who died as a result of a legal process and we ask the question, could such things ever happen here in the United States?
The Espionage Act of 1917 was used to silence opposition to the Governments policy of War with Germany. In 1799 the Alien and Sedition Act was used to silence critics of the Government in the United States. But by the 1960’s attitudes about dissent to Government war efforts had changed significantly.
But what would it take to change them back and restore a scenario where “dissent is [not] patriotism?”