Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.
Monday, June 25, 2018
free speech
Protesters yell outside of the Berkeley Police Department protesting police violence in Berkeley, Calif., on Monday, Dec. 8, 2014. (Nhat V. Meyer/Bay Area News Group/TNS)

The Un-Free Speech Movement At Berkeley

UC Berkeley is an exceptional institution whose history includes the 1964-65 protests that gained fame as the Free Speech Movement. Long known as a hotbed of left-wing activism, it has lately gained attention as a place where right-wingers venture at their peril. In February, the administration abruptly called off a talk by then-Breitbart News troll Milo Yiannopoulos after protesters threw stones and firebombs and smashed windows.

April 23, 2017
Founding Fathers

The Founding Fathers Warned Us About Men Like Donald Trump

Today’s conservatives may be equally worried about freedom’s prospects, but they tend to blame the overbearing state and its pensioners and pandering politicians, not the rapacity of the rich and their other investors and managers. The original Boston Tea Party targeted crony capitalists, and today’s conservatives would be wise to follow its example.

January 29, 2017
Protests, Freedom of Speech, Free Speech

Bills Targeting Protests In U.S. States Fuel Free Speech Fears

Bills have been introduced over the past month in states including North Dakota, Indiana, and Iowa that would impose measures such as harsher penalties for demonstrators who disrupt traffic, and scrapping punishment for drivers who unintentionally strike protesters blocking their vehicles.

January 27, 2017
Boycott, Trump

Yes, Political Boycotts Are A Form Of Free Speech

Obviously, there are effective boycotts and ineffective ones, stupid boycotts and well-directed ones, boycotts by the right, left and middle. The point here is that for whatever reason, a person has a right to withhold his or her custom. A consumer boycott does not muzzle anyone. Freedom of speech doesn’t end at the cash register.

January 19, 2017

What The Campus ‘Free Speech’ Crusade Won’t Say

If they really cared about individual rights in education, they’d have to start by recognizing that the right has been dining out on the follies of American “liberals” for so long that it has forgotten how to cook for itself, and has abandoned the kitchen to Donald Trump and Mitch McConnell.

September 4, 2016
Protestors hold hands in the air as they yell at U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump during a campaign event in Radford

Trump Foes Should Stay off His Stage

Everyone repeat: The First Amendment protects vile speech.

March 15, 2016
Governor Greg Abbott, Graduation, Texas, Petition, University of Northern Texas, Education, Free Speech

North Texas Students Petition For A Speaker Other Than Texas Governor Abbott

University of North Texas students petition against Governor Greg Abbott giving this year’s commencement address.

April 8, 2015
Free Speech, First Amendment, Civil Liberties, National News, SAE, Hate Speech, Racism, Media

Oklahoma Frat Fallout: Some Speech Protected, Some Punished

Free to offend: Strong support for First Amendment rights makes it difficult to sue for hateful speech.

March 23, 2015

Do Liberals Really Have A Free Speech Problem?

Progressives should think twice about encouraging groupthink.

February 4, 2015

License Plates Are Not Bumper Stickers

Should neo-Confederates really be allowed to have their own special license plates?

January 13, 2015

Bill Maher Will Keep His Speaking Date At UC Berkeley Despite Furor

After efforts from certain student groups at UC Berkeley to rescind Bill Maher’s invitation to speak at their school’s graduation, Maher says he is delighted to accept the invite.

November 3, 2014

Federal Judge Strikes Down Ohio’s Campaign Statements Law

By Kurtis Lee, Los Angeles Times In a ruling that could have reverberations around the country, a federal judge on Thursday struck down an Ohio law that bars individuals from knowingly making false statements about political candidates. The decision from District Court Judge Timothy Black follows the U.S. Supreme Court’s unanimous ruling in June that […]

September 12, 2014

Supreme Court Rejects Free-Speech Suit From Anti-Bush Protesters

By David G. Savage, Tribune Washington Bureau WASHINGTON — The free-speech right to protest against the president does not guarantee that opponents can be as close to the chief executive as supporters, the Supreme Court said Tuesday, throwing out a suit brought by critics of former President George W. Bush. Instead, the justices said Secret Service […]

May 27, 2014

Vegetarian Activists Sue Two Baltimore Cops, Allege Free Speech Violation

By Luke Broadwater, The Baltimore Sun BALTIMORE — Vegetarian activists have sued in federal court two Baltimore police officers who forced them to stop leafleting at the Inner Harbor — the latest legal front after years of disputes over the constitutional rights of protesters in the city. A former Baltimore teacher and three other vegetarian activists […]

May 27, 2014

In Nation’s Capital, A Delicate Dance Between Free Speech And Security

By Colton Gavin, Cronkite News Service WASHINGTON — Gerardo Torres had every intention of getting arrested at the White House, but he was still a little nervous — the immigration activist said previous arrests at protests in other cities had been “a little rough.” “But when I was in D.C., it was less trouble,” said […]

May 15, 2014

Protest At School Rekindles Debate Over Free Speech, Cultural Pride

By Joe Rodriguez, San Jose Mercury News MORGAN HILL, Calif. — Standing silently at attention Monday morning — Cinco de Mayo — almost 50 self-described “Patriots” held tall U.S flags in front of a high school still at the center of a public debate over free speech and cultural pride. “We’re just here to support […]

May 5, 2014

Supreme Court Hears Appeal From College Official Fired For Testimony On Corruption

By David G. Savage, Tribune Washington Bureau WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Monday sounded ready to rule that a public employee who testifies about corruption in his government department cannot be fired for revealing the truth. But first justices will need to confront their own 2006 ruling that sharply limited the free-speech rights of such […]

April 29, 2014

Supreme Court To Consider Challenge To Law Barring Campaign Falsehoods

By David G. Savage, Tribune Washington Bureau WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court next week will consider for the first time whether states may enforce laws that make it a crime to knowingly publish false statements about political candidates. The justices will hear an anti-abortion group’s free-speech challenge to an Ohio law that was invoked in 2010 […]

April 16, 2014

New Funding Climate a Boon to Romney

The fundraising environment has changed in the wake of Citizens United and other Supreme Court rulings that favor “free speech” (the right of corporations to use money to influence elections) over citizen-backed campaign finance rules. But one Republican is taking better advantage than the rest: [Mitt] Romney thus far appears to be the only GOP […]

July 9, 2011