“The contest for ages has been to rescue liberty from the grasp of executive power.” – Daniel Webster
In June 2015, the Department of State proposed several changes to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), which regulate the manner in which items on the United States Munitions List (USML) may be exported. 80 Fed. Reg. 106 (proposed Jun. 3, 2015). In addition to the physical armaments themselves, the ITAR regulates the export of USML items’ technical specifications. The key component of the ITAR, and the reason it concerns First Amendment scholars, is that it requires authorization from the State Department prior to the export of any items falling within its purview. The prior authorization requirement, combined with a creative definition of “export,” creates a real danger of speech suppression through prior restraint.
Read More... (Firearm “Gag Order” Bound to Miss its Mark)
| Posted by Jonathan C. Jakubowski on Mon. November 30, 2015 1:49 PM
Categories: Freedom of Speech
Political silence, the inability to have one’s voice heard, is an issue that marginalizes many citizens and residents. In an effort to remedy this pervasive issue, some citizens choose to give money to public policy think tanks that help foster discussion about important public policy topics. However, this important tool for political mobility seems to be under siege, as issue-focused organizations face costly litigation arising from burdensome reporting requirements.
Read More... (“Chilling” Campaign Finance Law Upheld)
| Posted by Joseph M. Swindle (Max) on Fri. November 6, 2015 6:15 PM
Categories: Court Rulings, Freedom of Speech
Since 2002 Texas-licensed veterinarian and Ph.D. Microbiologist, Dr. Ron Hines, has been helping pets and pet owners by giving online advice. Hines offered his advice for a $58 flat fee— or for free to those who could not pay— to pet owners around the world, often helping those who otherwise are without access to veterinary advice. After suffering from a debilitating injury that left him unable to practice, Hines began posting pet-care advice online. Pet owners responded by seeking advice from Hines, where he estimates he has helped more than 700 pet owners.
Read More... (Occupational Speech: The New Hazard?)
| Posted by Kathryn H. Van Wie on Sun. April 14, 2013 8:52 AM
Categories: Freedom of Speech
News outlets, media advocates, conservative and liberal groups, and First Amendment scholars have joined in filing an amicus brief () to the Indiana Supreme Court, claiming that the state’s criminal law barring intimidation violates the First Amendment. The criminal case () began with the defendant’s divorce proceedings.
When Daniel Brewington’s ex-wife filed for divorce, the court assigned two psychologists to evaluate custody options; they recommended assigning Brewington’s ex-wife sole custody and Brewington visitation rights. The Court of Appeals of Indiana stated that Brewington responded with “a torrent of abusive letters demanding that Dr. Connor release his entire file to him, withdraw the evaluation, and withdraw from the case.” He accused the doctors of “dishonest, malicious, and criminal behavior” and “unethical and criminal practices.” He also began blogging and using established Web sites to communicate messages to the same effect.
Read More... (Liberals and Conservatives Rally Behind First Amendment Defense against Intimidation Statute)
| Posted by Howard M. Lintz (Howie) on Sun. March 3, 2013 7:43 AM
With awards season underway, the paparazzi are out in full force, trying to capture the trophy winning celebrities in their fanciest garb. However, celebrity–friendly states, most recently Hawaii, are fighting back against invasive paparazzi techniques in order to protect their famous residents. The Hawaii Senate Judiciary Committee recently passed the “Steven Tyler Act,” an anti–paparazzi bill. According to the Reporters Committee, the bill has successfully passed its first hurdle to becoming law, and it would take effect on July 1, 2013.
Read More... (Celebrity Endorsed Anti–Paparazzi Bill Makes Hawaii More Attractive for High–Profile Homeowners, but Threatens First Amendment Protections)
| Posted by Satie R. Munn on Thu. February 28, 2013 8:46 AM
Earlier this month a Virginia judge declined to prohibit defendant Linda Cheek’s use of social media to advance her personal, professional beliefs relating to her impending trial. According to The Roanoke Times, prosecutors requested that U.S. District Judge, Glen Conrad, prevent defendant, Dr. Linda Sue Cheek, from blogging and tweeting about her legal proceedings for fear that these Internet postings could improperly influence potential jurors.
Read More... (Virginia Prosecutors Refuse to Bar Defendant Blogging)
| Posted by Candra K. Baizan on Sun. February 24, 2013 8:15 AM
Categories: Social Media