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First Amendment

Falsehoods

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Articles 1 - 4 of 4

Full-Text Articles in Law

Government Lies And The Press Clause, Helen Norton Jan 2018

Government Lies And The Press Clause, Helen Norton

Articles

This essay considers a particular universe of potentially dangerous governmental falsehoods: the government's lies and misrepresentations about and to the press.

Government's efforts to regulate private speakers' lies clearly implicate the First Amendment, as many (but not all) of our own lies are protected by the Free Speech Clause. But because the government does not have First Amendment rights of its own when it speaks, the constitutional limits, if any, on the government's own lies are considerably less clear.

In earlier work I have explored in some detail the Free Speech and Due Process Clauses as possible ...


(At Least) Thirteen Ways Of Looking At Election Lies, Helen Norton Jan 2018

(At Least) Thirteen Ways Of Looking At Election Lies, Helen Norton

Articles

Lies take many forms. Because lies vary so greatly in their motivations and consequences (among many other qualities), philosophers have long sought to catalog them to help make sense of their diversity and complexity. Legal scholars too have classified lies in various ways to explain why we punish some and protect others. This symposium essay offers yet another taxonomy of lies, focusing specifically on election lies — that is, lies told during or about elections. We can divide and describe election lies in a wide variety of ways: by speaker, by motive, by subject matter, by audience, by means of delivery ...


The Government's Lies And The Constitution, Helen Norton Jan 2015

The Government's Lies And The Constitution, Helen Norton

Articles

Governments lie. They do so for many different reasons to a wide range of audiences on a variety of topics. Although courts and commentators have extensively explored whether and when the First Amendment permits the government to regulate lies told by private speakers, relatively little attention has yet been paid to the constitutional implications of the government's intentional falsehoods. This Article helps fill that gap by exploring when, if ever, the Constitution prohibits our government from lying to us.

The government’s lies can be devastating. This is the case, for example, of its lies told to resist legal ...


Lies And The Constitution, Helen Norton Jan 2012

Lies And The Constitution, Helen Norton

Articles

Although the Supreme Court declared almost forty years ago that “there is no constitutional value in false statements of fact,” the Court in United States v Alvarez ruled that the First Amendment protects at least some -- and perhaps many -- intentional lies from government prohibition. In Alvarez, a divided Court struck down the Stolen Valor Act, a federal statute that made it a crime for any person to state falsely that he or she had received a military decoration or medal. In three separate opinions, all of the Justices agreed that the First Amendment permits the government to punish at least ...