Artistic Speech

Supreme Court Hands Down Ruling in Masterpiece Cake Case

Supreme Court Hands Down Ruling in Masterpiece Cake Case

The Supreme Court ruled 7-2 in favor of Jack C. Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Lakeland, Colorado, who refused to design and create a wedding cake for a celebration of a same-sex marriage saying that a state commission violated the Constitution’s protection of religious freedom when it ruled against Phillips. Phillips had claimed that the creation of the cake is artistic expression protected by the First Amendment’s free speech and free exercise of religion clause. The couple and Colorado argued that Phillips’ work on the cake was not expressive conduct according to the law and that the state had a significant interest in preventing discrimination based on sexual orientation. “The neutral and respectful consideration to which Phillips was entitled was compromised here,” Justice Kennedy wrote in the decision. “The Civil Rights Commission’s treatment of his case has some elements of a clear and impermissible hostility toward the sincere religious beliefs that motivated his objection.”

Ocean City, Maryland Boardwalk

As Summer Starts Maryland Judge Says Restrictions On Boardwalk Performers Unconstitutional

A U.S. district court judge in Maryland ruled that restrictions on street performers in Ocean City is unconstitutional. The decision says the restrictions placed a “substantial burden” on harmless speech.

May 31, 2018 Artistic Speech, Speech, Top Stories
2017 Has Been A Year of Challenges For Artistic Free Speech

2017 Has Been A Year of Challenges For Artistic Free Speech

From comedian Kathy Griffin posing with a severed head of Trump to the Public Theater depicting the death of a Trump look-alike in Julius Caesar, 2017 has been a year where the arts have pushed the boundaries and come under fire. The threat of government censorship is not new. In 1873, under the Comstock Law a reported 194,000 “questionable pictures” and 134,000 pounds of[Read More…]

Mural Photo by Robert Morris, included in ACLU's complaint

A Provocative Mural in Louisiana Stirs Artistic Expression Debate

  March 16, 2018: ACLU Files Lawsuit To Protect Controversial Mural When real estate developer Neal Morris commissioned local street artist Cashy D last November to create a wall mural using a quote from President’s Trump’s Access Hollywood taping, he did not expect the onslaught of letters from New Orleans officials claiming he could face jail time for commissioning the piece. Now the[Read More…]