Has Society Become Tolerant of Further Infringement on First Amendment Rights?
Nicholas A. Primrose
Barry University - Dwayne O. Andreas School of Law
December 4, 2012
The First Amendment was written as a general prohibition on infringement of certain rights. This paper focused mostly on freedom of speech that has religious undertones. Part I of this paper introduces the First Amendment, including some historic interpretation and understanding of why the First Amendment is important to our society. Part II of this paper focuses on what the author deems three important events that are shaping society's current view of the First Amendment. Part II discusses the current events of the Ground Zero Mosque, the Westboro Baptist Church protesting and subsequent actions, and the comments from Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy regarding same-sex marriage. The author analyzes these three events to discuss concerns over society becoming tolerant of infringement on the First Amendment. Part III of this paper discusses some considerations for society. The need to protect the 'marketplace of ideas' because that is what the First Amendent was designed to protect. FInally, the paper touches on how social media and new trends in speech should also protect the idea of open public discourse. Overall, reading this paper will give you an understanding of how even though we may disagree with some speech, protecting the open debate outweighs censoring speech.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 29
Keywords: First Amendment, Chick-fil-A, Ground Zero Mosque, Free Speech, Religion, Religious Freedom, Westboro Baptist Church, Snyder v. Phelps, Picketing, Speech, Same-sex marriage, Marketplace of Ideas, Holmesworking papers series
Date posted: December 21, 2012 ; Last revised: January 10, 2013
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