White privilege and free speech, or “The Brandenburg test is sturdy for a theater….when a man falsely cries FIRE! in a crowded theater, his speech is not protected.  Are there no blacks in this theater?  Are there no Jews?”

Tonight, I read about the First Amendment, especially freedom of speech and freedom of assembly.  I read the per curium opinion in Brandenburg v. Ohio. I read the concurrence by Black and Douglas. I read the Memorandum of Opinion of the judge who, over the objection of the city, granted the permit of the white […]

Free speech and democracy

#DailyDemocracy  This is a Brief of Whitney v. California, a 1925 case about the Free Speech of a Communist, Charlotte Whitney.  In later cases before the Supreme Court, the right of free speech would be strengthened more than the “imminent lawless action” test used on Charlotte Whitney Here, the mere idea that Charlotte Whitney’s speech […]

Trump and the Death of Democracy

I have focused on the sexism, racism, homophobia, and xenophobia that is deeply and expressly embedded in Trump’s rhetoric, and the bias he tuned into, in many supporters, to become elected. This morning I have read the wise words of Michael Lerner, a rabbi, who I’ll paraphrase this way: The Trump supporters really are disgusted, […]

The secret of liberty

Children are safeguarding my ability to write this.  They went to jail for me, for you, for Blacks in particular but for all Americans generally.  “Black Lives Matter” was what they conveyed. It wasn’t just a slogan.  It was an action.  Their presence in the street, disrupting business as usual and changing the conversation, spoke […]

I Don’t Want to Be Associated With Him– An essay on the decision to seek and obtain an abortion and how the case law ought to include the right to abortion by way of the First Amendment right to free speech.

            The freedom to obtain an abortion is presently couched in the idea that a woman’s decision to seek and obtain an abortion is a private decision (see Roe v. Wade  410 U.S. 113 (1973).             That privacy right is found in penumbras of the Constitution (i.e., the shadow of the other amendments….you can’t have […]