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Of Speech And Sanctions: Toward A Penalty-Sensitive Approach To The First Amendment, Michael Coenen Jun 2012

Of Speech And Sanctions: Toward A Penalty-Sensitive Approach To The First Amendment, Michael Coenen

Journal Articles

Courts confronting First Amendment claims do not often scrutinize the severity of a speaker’s punishment. Embracing a “penalty-neutral” understanding of the free-speech right, these courts tend to treat an individual’s expression as either protected, in which case the government may not punish it at all, or unprotected, in which case the government may punish it to a very great degree. There is, however, a small but important body of “penalty-sensitive” case law that runs counter to the penalty-neutral norm. Within this case law, the severity of a speaker’s punishment affects the merits of her First Amendment claim, thus giving rise …


Exploring The First Amendment Rights Of Teens In Relationship To Sexting And Censorship, Julia Halloran Mclaughlin Feb 2012

Exploring The First Amendment Rights Of Teens In Relationship To Sexting And Censorship, Julia Halloran Mclaughlin

University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform

This Article explores child pornography law in relation to teen sexting conduct. Recently, some teens who engaged in teen sexting have been convicted under child pornography laws and have been required to register as sexual predators. The criminalization of teens for developmentally typical behavior, mimicking the conduct of adults, can result in grave harm to most teens. Furthermore, the application of child pornography laws to teen sexting conduct demonstrates the constitutional overbreadth of the current definition of child pornography. Photographs have an emblematic role in society-capturing and celebrating youth. Moreover, the creation of teen sexting images accompanies a teen's developmental …