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Full-Text Articles in Law

The ‘Weaponized’ First Amendment At The Marble Palace And The Firing Line: Reaction And Progressive Advocacy Before The Roberts Court And Lower Federal Courts, Seth F. Kreimer Jun 2023

The ‘Weaponized’ First Amendment At The Marble Palace And The Firing Line: Reaction And Progressive Advocacy Before The Roberts Court And Lower Federal Courts, Seth F. Kreimer

All Faculty Scholarship

It once seemed that the First Amendment doctrine developed by the Supreme Court stood as a bulwark protecting grassroots struggles for social change. In the twenty-first century, however, particularly since the appointments of Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Alito in 2005, a number of observers have begun to view the Supreme Court’s First Amendment work as a “weaponized” redoubt of reaction.

This sense of the rightward tilt of Supreme Court decisions is rooted in reality. Examining 104 Supreme Court First Amendment cases decided during the 2005–2020 Terms, it turns out that successful litigants are four times as likely to come …


Montana Is Trying To Ban Tiktok. What Does The First Amendment Have To Say?, Deborah Pearlstein, John Dellamore May 2023

Montana Is Trying To Ban Tiktok. What Does The First Amendment Have To Say?, Deborah Pearlstein, John Dellamore

Online Publications

Last month, Montana became the first U.S. state to pass a bill banning TikTok from operating within its borders. If Governor Greg Gianforte signs some version of the bill, it will become the first statewide ban in the country to take direct aim at the popular social media app, which various U.S. government officials have warned poses a serious national security threat. But while Montana may be the first to act, significant gaps remain in the public debate surrounding both the nature of the threat that TikTok presents, and the constitutional questions that trying to regulate it might create.


Legal Scholars Weigh In On The Lasting Significance Of Dominion V. Fox, Samantha Barbas, Martin Garbus, Lyrissa Lidsky, Timothy Zick, Sandra Baron Apr 2023

Legal Scholars Weigh In On The Lasting Significance Of Dominion V. Fox, Samantha Barbas, Martin Garbus, Lyrissa Lidsky, Timothy Zick, Sandra Baron

Popular Media

No abstract provided.


Forward: New Supreme Court Cases: Duquesne Law Faculty Explains, Wilson Huhn Apr 2023

Forward: New Supreme Court Cases: Duquesne Law Faculty Explains, Wilson Huhn

Law Faculty Publications

On September 30, 2022, several members of the faculty of the Thomas R. Kline School of Law of Duquesne University presented a Continuing Legal Education program, New Supreme Court Cases: Duquesne Law Faculty Explains, reviewing these developments. Duquesne Law Review graciously invited the faculty panel to contribute their analysis of these cases from the Supreme Court's 2021- 2022 term for inclusion in this symposium issue of the Law Review.


A "Mere Shadow" Of A Conflict: Obscuring The Establishment Clause In Kennedy V. Bremerton, Ann L. Schiavone Apr 2023

A "Mere Shadow" Of A Conflict: Obscuring The Establishment Clause In Kennedy V. Bremerton, Ann L. Schiavone

Law Faculty Publications

In Kennedy v. Bremerton School District, the Roberts Court continued its move to carve out larger spaces for religious practice and expression in public spheres. But in so doing it left lower courts and school districts with many more questions than answers concerning what the Establishment Clause means and what it requires of them.


How Law Schools Can Fight For Fearless Speech, Mary Anne Franks Apr 2023

How Law Schools Can Fight For Fearless Speech, Mary Anne Franks

Articles

No abstract provided.


The Common Law And First Amendment Qualified Right Of Public Access To Foreign Intelligence Law, Laura K. Donohue Mar 2023

The Common Law And First Amendment Qualified Right Of Public Access To Foreign Intelligence Law, Laura K. Donohue

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

For millennia, public access to the law has been the hallmark of rule of law. To be legally and morally binding, rules must be promulgated. Citizens’ knowledge of the law, in turn, serves as the lynchpin for democratic governance. In common law countries, it is more than just the statutory provisions and their execution that matters: how courts rule, and the reasoning behind their determination, proves central. Accordingly, in the United States, both common law and the right to petition incorporated in the First Amendment have long enshrined a presumed right of public right of access to Article III opinions …


Beyond The Watchdog: Using Law To Build Trust In The Press, Erin C. Carroll Mar 2023

Beyond The Watchdog: Using Law To Build Trust In The Press, Erin C. Carroll

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Declining trust in the American press has been longstanding and corrosive—both to our information environment and to democracy. It is tempting to think that if journalists could just repeatedly and brilliantly play their key role—that of watchdog—it might be redemptive. But doubling down on the watchdog function holds risks in our polarized climate. Research shows that some conservatives recoil from watchdog journalism, finding it too cynical and politicized.

This essay argues that a different journalistic function—one that has received far less attention and adulation from judges and legal scholars—should be encouraged and amplified. This is the press’s role as a …


Defamation 2.0, Cortelyou C. Kenney Mar 2023

Defamation 2.0, Cortelyou C. Kenney

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

There is a literal prohibition in the media bar that media lawyers cannot represent plaintiffs in suits for defamation. The stated principle behind this rule—a rule that can result in excommunication from the premier media law organization if it is violated—is that playing both sides of the defamation game is disloyal to traditional media actors because any chance of victory could inadvertently distort the law of defamation to increase the risk of frivolous suits against media outlets or other innocent third parties. But has the maxim finally gone too far?

Fueled by a new model where media profits are driven …


The Disembodied First Amendment, Nathan Cortez, William M. Sage Feb 2023

The Disembodied First Amendment, Nathan Cortez, William M. Sage

Faculty Scholarship

First Amendment doctrine is becoming disembodied—increasingly detached from human speakers and listeners. Corporations claim that their speech rights limit government regulation of everything from product labeling to marketing to ordinary business licensing. Courts extend protections to commercial speech that ordinarily extended only to core political and religious speech. And now, we are told, automated information generated for cryptocurrencies, robocalling, and social media bots are also protected speech under the Constitution. Where does it end? It begins, no doubt, with corporate and commercial speech. We show, however, that heightened protection for corporate and commercial speech is built on several “artifices” - …


Unprecedented Precedent And Original Originalism: How The Supreme Court’S Decision In Dobbs Threatens Privacy And Free Speech Rights, Leonard Niehoff Jan 2023

Unprecedented Precedent And Original Originalism: How The Supreme Court’S Decision In Dobbs Threatens Privacy And Free Speech Rights, Leonard Niehoff

Articles

The U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization has drawn considerable attention because of its reversal of Roe v. Wade and its rejection of a woman’s constitutional right to terminate her pregnancy. The Dobbs majority, and some of the concurring opinions, emphasized that the ruling was a narrow one. Nevertheless, there are reasons to think the influence of Dobbs may extend far beyond the specific constitutional issue the case addresses.

This article explains why Dobbs could have significant and unanticipated implications for the law of privacy and the law of free expression. I argue that two …


Getting To Trustworthiness (But Not Necessarily To Trust), Helen L. Norton Jan 2023

Getting To Trustworthiness (But Not Necessarily To Trust), Helen L. Norton

Publications

As ethicist and political scientist Russell Hardin observed, our willingness to trust an actor generally turns on our own experience with, and thus our own perceptions of, that actor’s motives and that actor’s competence. Changes over time and technology can alter our experience with a particular actor and thus our willingness to trust or distrust that actor.

This symposium essay focuses not on how to encourage the public to trust the media, but instead on how the media’ can behave in trustworthy ways--in other words, how its choices can demonstrate its trustworthy motives and competence. Examples include refusing to amplify …


When “Riot” Is In The Eye Of The Beholder: The Critical Need For Constitutional Clarity In Riot Laws, Nancy C. Marcus Jan 2023

When “Riot” Is In The Eye Of The Beholder: The Critical Need For Constitutional Clarity In Riot Laws, Nancy C. Marcus

Faculty Scholarship

In the twenty-first century, American streets are frequently filled with passionate protest and political dissent. Protesters of diverse backgrounds range from those waving flags or lying on the ground to re-enact police killings to those carrying lit torches or hand-made weapons. This Article addresses how, as between such groups, it may initially seem clear which has a propensity to engage in violent riots, but too often, “rioter” is in the eye of the beholder, with those both regulating and reporting on riots defining the term inconsistently. And ironically, while police brutality is often the subject of protests, non-violent protesters who …


The Stolen Election Lie And The Freedom Of Speech, Wes Henricksen Jan 2023

The Stolen Election Lie And The Freedom Of Speech, Wes Henricksen

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Of Systems Thinking And Straw Men, Kate Klonick Jan 2023

Of Systems Thinking And Straw Men, Kate Klonick

Faculty Publications

(Excerpt)

In Content Moderation as Systems Thinking, Professor Evelyn Douek, as the title suggests, endorses an approach to the people, rules, and processes governing online speech as one not of anecdote and doctrine but of systems thinking. She constructs this concept as a novel and superior understanding of the problems of online-speech governance as compared to those existent in what she calls the “standard [scholarly] picture of content moderation.” This standard picture of content moderation — which is roughly five years old — is “outdated and incomplete,” she argues. It is preoccupied with anecdotal, high-profile adjudications in which platforms …


Understanding An American Paradox: An Overview Of The Racial Muslim: When Racism Quashes Religious Freedom, Spearit Jan 2023

Understanding An American Paradox: An Overview Of The Racial Muslim: When Racism Quashes Religious Freedom, Spearit

Articles

In The Racial Muslim: When Racism Quashes Religious Freedom, Sahar Aziz unveils a mechanism that perpetuates the persecution of religion. While the book’s title suggests a problem that engulfs Muslims, it is not a new problem, but instead a recurring theme in American history. Aziz constructs a model that demonstrates how racialization of a religious group imposes racial characteristics on that group, imbuing it with racial stereotypes that effectively treat the group as a racial rather than religious group deserving of religious liberty.

In identifying a racialization process that effectively veils religious discrimination, Aziz’s book points to several important …


Mitigating Misinformation On Social Media Platforms: Treating Section 230 Of The Communications Decency Act As A Quid Pro Quo Benefit, Meghan E. Mcdermott Jan 2023

Mitigating Misinformation On Social Media Platforms: Treating Section 230 Of The Communications Decency Act As A Quid Pro Quo Benefit, Meghan E. Mcdermott

Connecticut Law Review

The rise of misinformation on social media has prompted governments worldwide to enact legislation that may affect every person’s right to freedom of opinion and expression. In the United States, combatting misinformation shares surprising bipartisan support in an ever-divided political landscape. While several proposals have emerged that would strip social media companies of the twenty-fiveyear-old law that shields them from lawsuits over content, it is unlikely that they would survive the seemingly insurmountable First Amendment scrutiny. Thus, an alternative to combatting misinformation is needed.

In an attempt to provide an alternative, this Note presents a model for mitigating misinformation. By …


Terrible Freedom, Ambiguous Authenticity, And The Pragmatism Of The Endangered: Why Free Speech In Law School Gets Complicated, Leonard M. Niehoff Jan 2023

Terrible Freedom, Ambiguous Authenticity, And The Pragmatism Of The Endangered: Why Free Speech In Law School Gets Complicated, Leonard M. Niehoff

Articles

We idealize colleges and universities as places of unfettered inquiry, where freedom of expression flourishes. The Supreme Court has described the university classroom as “peculiarly the ‘marketplace of ideas.’” It declared: “The Nation’s future depends upon leaders trained through wide exposure to that robust exchange of ideas which discovers truth out of a multitude of tongues, [rather] than through any kind of authoritative selection.” The exchange of competing ideas takes place not only in classrooms, but also in public spaces, dormitories, student organizations, and in countless other campus contexts.


Is Corporate Law Nonpartisan?, Ofer Eldar, Gabriel V. Rauterberg Jan 2023

Is Corporate Law Nonpartisan?, Ofer Eldar, Gabriel V. Rauterberg

Faculty Scholarship

Only rarely does the United States Supreme Court hear a case with fundamental implications for corporate law. In Camey v. Adams, however, the Supreme Court had the opportunity to address whether the State of Delaware's requirement of partisan balance for its judiciary violates the First Amendment. Although the Court disposed of the case on other grounds, Justice Sotomayor acknowledged that the issue "will likely be raised again." The stakes are high because most large businesses are incorporated in Delaware and thus are governed by its corporate law. Former Delaware governors and chief justices lined up to defend the state's "nonpartisan" …


First Amendment Scrutiny: Realigning First Amendment Doctrine Around Government Interests, John D. Inazu Jan 2023

First Amendment Scrutiny: Realigning First Amendment Doctrine Around Government Interests, John D. Inazu

Scholarship@WashULaw

This Article proposes a simpler way to frame judicial analysis of First Amendment claims: a government restriction on First Amendment expression or action must advance a compelling interest through narrowly tailored means and must not excessively burden the expression or action relative to the interest advanced. The test thus has three prongs: (1) compelling interest; (2) narrow tailoring; and (3) proportionality.

Part I explores how current First Amendment doctrine too often minimizes or ignores a meaningful assessment of the government’s purported interest in limiting First Amendment liberties. Part II shows how First Amendment inquiry is further confused by threshold inquiries …


Addiction And Liberty, Matthew B. Lawrence Jan 2023

Addiction And Liberty, Matthew B. Lawrence

Faculty Articles

This Article explores the interaction between addiction and liberty and identifies a firm legal basis for recognition of a fundamental constitutional right to freedom from addiction. Government interferes with freedom from addiction when it causes addiction or restricts addiction treatment, and government may protect freedom from addiction through legislation empowering individuals against private actors’ efforts to addict them without their consent. This Article motivates and tests the boundaries of this right through case studies of emergent threats to liberty made possible or exacerbated by new technologies and scientific understandings. These include certain state lottery programs, addiction treatment restrictions, and smartphone …


Contract Law Should Be Faith Neutral: Reverse Entanglement Would Be Stranglement For Religious Arbitration, Michael J. Broyde, Alexa J. Windsor Jan 2023

Contract Law Should Be Faith Neutral: Reverse Entanglement Would Be Stranglement For Religious Arbitration, Michael J. Broyde, Alexa J. Windsor

Faculty Articles

The first section of this Article will outline the ways in which communities—religious and other groups, including the LGBTQ+ community—have used and continue to use private law to achieve meaningful dispute resolution. By diminishing the role of civil courts to review arbitrations, parties may tailor their resolutions to prioritize community values that may be misaligned with secular society. Outside of historical religious usage, private law offers a field ripe for jurisprudential growth. Through alternative dispute resolution, affinity-based minority groups can pave an avenue towards justice which accurately reflects the unique values of their lived experiences.

The second section will provide …


January 6, Ambiguously Inciting Speech, And The Overt-Acts Rule, Alan Z. Rozenshtein, Jed Handelsman Shugerman Jan 2023

January 6, Ambiguously Inciting Speech, And The Overt-Acts Rule, Alan Z. Rozenshtein, Jed Handelsman Shugerman

Faculty Scholarship

A prosecution of Donald Trump for his role in the January 6 attack on the Capitol would have to address whether the First Amendment protects the inflammatory remarks he made at the “Stop the Steal” rally. A prosecution based solely on the content of Trump’s speech—whether for incitement, insurrection, or obstruction—would face serious constitutional difficulties under Brandenburg v. Ohio’s dual requirements of intent and likely imminence. But a prosecution need not rely solely on the content of Trump’s speech. It can also look to Trump’s actions: his order to the remove the magnetometers from the entrances to the rally and …


Why The Actual Malice Test Should Be Eliminated, John M. Kang Jan 2023

Why The Actual Malice Test Should Be Eliminated, John M. Kang

Faculty Scholarship

Under traditional common law, a plaintiff could recover damages for libel if she could prove that the defendant had published a factual statement about the plaintiff that tended to injure the plaintiff’s reputation. The plaintiff, at most, was required to show negligence to recover damages for libel. While the amount of money that any given plaintiff could recover in damages was uncertain, one thing was clear: the First Amendment would not protect libel. In 1964, in New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, the Supreme Court radically upended this received view of libel as unprotected speech. According to Sullivan, …


The Violence Of Free Speech And Press Metaphors, Erin C. Carroll Jan 2023

The Violence Of Free Speech And Press Metaphors, Erin C. Carroll

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Today, our free speech marketplace is often overwhelming, confusing, and even dangerous. Threats, misdirection, and lies abound. Online firestorms lead to offline violence. This Article argues that the way we conceptualize free speech and the free press are partly to blame: our metaphors are hurting us.

The primary metaphor courts have used for a century to describe free speech—the marketplace of ideas—has been linked to violence since its inception. Originating in a case about espionage and revolution, in a dissent written by Oliver Wendell Holmes, a thrice-injured Civil War veteran, the marketplace has been described as a space where competition …


Arresting Assembly: An Argument Against Expanding Criminally Punishable Protest, Allison Freedman Jan 2023

Arresting Assembly: An Argument Against Expanding Criminally Punishable Protest, Allison Freedman

Faculty Scholarship

ARRESTING ASSEMBLY: AN ARGUMENT AGAINST EXPANDING
CRIMINALLY PUNISHABLE PROTEST
ALLISON M. FREEDMAN

ABSTRACT

In recent years, public protests have shed light on societal inequities that had previously gone unheard. Yet instead of responding to protesters’ concerns, many state legislators are attempting to silence disenfranchised groups by introducing hundreds of “anti-protest” bills. This is a recent phenomenon and one that is accelerating—the largest wave of “anti-protest” bills was introduced on the heels of the most robust protest movement in recent history, Black Lives Matter during the summer of 2020.

Although it is clear that legislators are attempting to tamp down public …


The New Pornography Wars, Julie A. Dahlstrom Jan 2023

The New Pornography Wars, Julie A. Dahlstrom

Faculty Scholarship

The world’s largest online pornography conglomerate, MindGeek, has come under fire for the publishing of “rape videos,” child pornography, and nonconsensual pornography on its website, Pornhub. As in the “pornography wars” of the 1970s and 1980s, lawyers and activists have now turned to civil remedies and filed creative anti-trafficking lawsuits against MindGeek and third parties, like payment processing company, Visa. These lawsuits seek not only to achieve legal accountability for online sex trafficking but also to reframe a broader array of online harms as sex trafficking.

This Article explores what these new trafficking lawsuits mean for the future regulation of …


First Amendment Scholar Timothy Zick Dismantles Trump V. Cnn Lawsuit, Timothy Zick Oct 2022

First Amendment Scholar Timothy Zick Dismantles Trump V. Cnn Lawsuit, Timothy Zick

Popular Media

Former President Donald Trump filed a $475 million defamation lawsuit against CNN arguing the network has maligned him with “fake news” for the purposes of damaging his political future heading into 2024.

The complaint filed Oct. 3 stated, “CNN has sought to use its massive influence – purportedly as a ‘trusted’ news source – to defame the Plaintiff in the minds of its viewers and readers for the purpose of defeating him politically, culminating in CNN claiming credit for ‘[getting] Trump out’ in the 2020 presidential election.”

First Amendment Watch asked First Amendment scholar Timothy Zick to annotate the 29-page …


Democracy Harms And The First Amendment, Deborah Pearlstein Oct 2022

Democracy Harms And The First Amendment, Deborah Pearlstein

Articles

The First Amendment tolerates—has long tolerated—the regulation of certain kinds of false speech. Indeed, regulable lies are not limited to traditionally less-protected categories of speech like defamation and commercial deception. They include an array of other established speech regulations, administered by government institutions every day, from criminal laws barring perjury and other lies to government officials, to disciplinary measures by elected bodies sanctioning members for false or otherwise objectionable speech. Yet while it is easy to identify the kinds of lies that existing doctrinal categories make regulable for the personal, physical, or reputational harms they inflict on individuals¸ it has …


Consider Freedom Of Speech: Perspectives On How To Hold Difficult Conversations With Respect, Vivian E. Hamilton, Andrew D. Stelljes Oct 2022

Consider Freedom Of Speech: Perspectives On How To Hold Difficult Conversations With Respect, Vivian E. Hamilton, Andrew D. Stelljes

Popular Media

No abstract provided.