Home > Uncategorized > The First Amendment and Catch 22

The First Amendment and Catch 22

JONATHAN TURLEY

Submitted by: Mike Spindell, Guest Blogger

220px-Anthony_Kennedy_official_SCOTUS_portraitIt’s been so long that I can’t really remember when I first started thinking about and supporting freedom of speech. Perhaps it was when I was eight and went to the local library to borrow Sir Walter Scott’s “Ivanhoe”. I was told I could only borrow books from the children’s section. At the time I didn’t see that as a First Amendment Issue, because I still hadn’t learned about the Constitution. However, as the “Fifties” progressed and the issue of banning books and movies heated up, my social studies education caught up with my natural predilections and I became a full supporter of the idea of the rights of free speech, free press and everyone’s right to access information. During the “Fifties” movies were regularly cut down so as not to offend groups such as The Catholic League. The novels of some of the…

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  1. Gary T
    June 8, 2013 at 12:48 pm

    Although I agree with much that Mike Spindell says in this article, I still think that the SCOTUS made the right call in Citizens United.

    Although usually cast by critics as a decision as simply authorizing unlimited funding of political campaigns by corporations, the decision is fundamentally about the free speech rights retained by associations of people that have formed their association as legal entities.

    Legal entities can come in many different forms, be they commercial corporations, worker unions, non-profit community organizations or political advocacy groups, or any other group that represents its constituent members.

    To illegalize the collective speech of any of these organizations is to illegalize the free speech of each of its members, and that would a violation of the Constitution.

    It seems so clear to me that Citizens United is an affirmation of the guarantees of free speech, albeit applied to a group of individuals instead of an individual, that I don’t understand what all the hullabaloo is about.

    It is only when critics claim that Citizens United may lead to [fill in blank], and layer proposed inference upon inference on what may happen if such speech is permitted to reach the public domain, that they state what is wrong with it.

    But to illegalize the possibility, even likelihood, of unpopular speech, or unpopularly funded speech, is fundamentally a wrongheaded way to oppose it.
    It also insults, and nanny-states the intelligence of the people such speech targets. This view presumes that the target audience is incapable of assessing the validity or partisanship of such speech, and responding to it with some reason.

    I finish with the fact that several recent highly funded political races were lost to lesser financed opponents. The people saw through the slick and overadvertised campaigns, and decided on the merits who to vote for.

    I might add that Jonathan Turley, just as I am, is in favor of the Citizens United decision.

  2. September 23, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    Hi Gary-

    I couldn’t find another way to contact you so I’m just going to contact you here. I just wanted to say I saw your Youtube channel and it’s pretty ridiculous. I hope your trial works out and justice is served.

    • Gary T
      September 23, 2013 at 9:50 pm

      Hello Pasta Boy!

      Your post did get to me, and thank you for the support.

      I am currently in a custody trial trying to get custody my daughter Anya.
      So far I have posted two videos on this, the CPS video and the psychiatrist video.
      I hope to post some more soon, but they requiring a bit more production editing, and are thus taking a bit more time.
      Next vids I hope to show my daughter Anya, our affection for each other and the obvious fact that she never needed to be drugged up like they did.
      Thank you for the feedback, and any suggestions on which vids I should show are invited.

      Gary T

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