Symbolic Speech | Teacher Guides

Teacher Guide: How are NFL Protests Related to Symbolic Speech and the First Amendment?

49ers at Redskins 10/15/17

Symbolic speech as a form of protest, like taking a knee at a football game while others stand for the National Anthem, enjoys a long history in America. It’s been a powerful form of political expression going back to the protests in the colonies in the 1760s against British oppression. The NFL protests—players taking a knee during the playing of the National Anthem before NFL games—provides an extraordinary opportunity for teaching about the law and history of the First Amendment.

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