Tag
Offensive Speech
KeyBoard Hatespeech

Campus Speech Group Publishes Report on Internet Expression

The report details 35 incidents of universities punishing students or faculty for speech online, and 10 universities with policies in place that FIRE says give administrators “immense power to punish large swaths of speech.” According to the advocacy group, many public universities are acting like the First Amendment applies differently to online speech. 

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Charlottesville

First Amendment Teacher Guide: Hate Speech In America

Although many countries across the globe have laws prohibiting hate speech, the United States protects offensive speech about certain groups that historically have been subject to discrimination. This teacher guide explores the First Amendment issues that arise with attempting to regulate offensive speech drawing on past and contemporary court cases.

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Virginia Profanity

Virginia Repeals Outdated Ban on “Profane Swearing”

The Virginia code dates back to George Washington’s 1776 “Order Against Profanity” which was used to keep soldiers from engaging in “the foolish and wicked practice of profane cursing and swearing.”

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California Town Looks to Amend Anti-Panhandling Law to Address Free Speech Concerns

A city council in Eureka, California is planning to amend a 2016 ordinance that regulated “aggressive and intrusive” panhandling after concerns that the law likely violated the First Amendment. 

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Courthouse

Death Sentence of White Supremacist Overturned on First Amendment Grounds

The California Supreme Court unanimously overturned the death sentence of a white supremacist after finding that the prosecution erred by […]

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University of California Student

Appeals Court Rules that University Violated Satirical Publications’ First Amendment Rights

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit overturned a lower court’s ruling that had dismissed a lawsuit brought […]

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Drag Queen Story Hour

Public Library in Texas Town Cancels Speaking Event with Trans Author

A public library in Leander, Texas canceled an event involving Lilah Sturges, a trans woman and graphic novelist, after city […]

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Erik Brunetti

Supreme Court Ruling Allows Registration of “Immoral” or “Scandalous” Words

In a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court struck down a ban on registering words or symbols that are "immoral" or "scandalous." The case was brought by designer Eric Brunetti who created a clothing line in 1990 that prominently displayed the “FUCT” logo. Brunetti had been trying to obtain approval for a trademark since 2011, but the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has consistently denied his application. The agency contends that “FUCT” violates federal law that prohibits words that are “shocking” or “offensive” on trademarked material.

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