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The 1 st Amendment Landmark Decisions Heard by The U.S. Supreme Court

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Presentation on theme: "The 1 st Amendment Landmark Decisions Heard by The U.S. Supreme Court"— Presentation transcript:

1 The 1 st Amendment Landmark Decisions Heard by The U.S. Supreme Court

2 Landmark Cases involving Free Speech and Schools

3 West Virginia State Board of Education vs. Barnette - 1943 that held that the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution protected students from being forced to salute the American flag and say the Pledge of Allegiance in school.

4 Tinker vs. Des Moines - 1969 Sumpreme Court held that  the First Amendment applied to  public schools, and that administrators would have to demonstrate constitutionally valid reasons for any specific regulation of speech in the classroom.  The court observed, "It can hardly be argued that either students or teachers shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate."

5 The “Tinker Test” lshZ0&feature=fvst&safety_mode=true&pe rsist_safety_mode=1 lshZ0&feature=fvst&safety_mode=true&pe rsist_safety_mode=1

6 Bethel vs. Fraser - 1986 Matthew Fraser was suspended from school for making a speech full of sexual innuendos at a school assembly. The Supreme Court held that his suspension did not violate the First Amendment the ruling in Fraser can be seen as a limitation on the 1 st Amendemnt, prohibiting certain styles of expression that are sexually vulgar.

7 Morse vs. Frederick - 2007 The Supreme Court held that a Principal may, consistent with the First Amendment, restrict student speech at a school event, when that speech is reasonably viewed as promoting illegal drug use. Not only was a school activity involved, but the banner's promotion of illegal drugs was contrary to the school's policy or mission to prevent student drug abuse.

8 Video DWC0o&safety_mode=true&persist_safet y_mode=1 DWC0o&safety_mode=true&persist_safet y_mode=1

9 Hazlewood vs. Kuhlmeier - 1998 which held that public school curricular student newspapers that have not been established as forums for student expression are subject to a lower level of First Amendment protection than independent student expression or newspapers established as forums for student expression. The justices believed that the censorship did not violate the student's First Amendment rights of free speech.

10 Video _8YExw&feature=related&safety_mode=tr ue&persist_safety_mode=1 _8YExw&feature=related&safety_mode=tr ue&persist_safety_mode=1

11 What Is Symbolic Speech? When Is It Protected? The First Amendment does not mean you can say anything you want, wherever you want, or whenever you want. For instance, fighting words – words that cause distress or incite violence – are not protected. In addition, obscene expressions are not protected by the First Amendment.  If you tell a lie about someone who then sues you because you damaged their reputation, you will not be able to claim that the First Amendment protects you.

12 What is symbolic speech? Sometimes speech is spoken or written. Sometimes speech is symbolic or an action. Symbolic speech is conduct that expresses an idea. Although speech is commonly thought of as verbal expression, we are all aware of nonverbal communication. Sit-ins, flag waving, demonstrations, and wearing... protest buttons are examples of symbolic speech.

13 While most forms of conduct could be said to express ideas in some way, only some conduct is protected as symbolic speech. In analyzing such cases, the courts ask whether the speaker intended to convey a particular message and whether it is likely that the message was understood by those who viewed it. To convince a court that symbolic conduct should be punished and not protected as speech, the government must show it has an important reason. However, the reason cannot be that the government disapproves of the message conveyed by the symbolic conduct.

14 Activity – in Groups Cyberspeech  Define it as it relates to the 1 st Amendment  rspeech rspeech  eech eech

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