Declaration of Independence

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. - That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Sunday, December 11, 2022

Is Freedom of Speech in Danger?

The topic of discussion for this Constitution Monday is the First Amendment freedom of speech. It is a fundamental right in America to say whatever we like or to refrain from saying something that we do not choose to say.

A freedom of speech case is currently at the Supreme Court where the justices recently heard the oral arguments in 303 Creative LLC v. Elenis case. This case is Lorie Smith, a graphic designer in Colorado, who refused to create websites with messages that conflict with her Christian faith beliefs – such as gay wedding celebrations.

David Harsanyi at The Daily Signal recently published an article about this case. He wrote that the case “gives the Supreme Court the opportunity to strengthen the right to free expression” and “fix its useless decision in Masterpiece Cakeshop v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission.” According to Harsanyi, the Court ruled in that case that “the government can level debilitating fines against Christian businesses” IF “bureaucrats didn’t openly convey any animus toward their victims.” His article continued: 

David Cole, national legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union, which has come a long way since defending the Nazis of Skokie on neutral principle grounds, wrote an op-ed published Monday in The New York Times. Its headline before being edited post-publication: “The First Amendment Is Not a License to discriminate.”

Why? Because otherwise, “interior decorators, landscape architects, tattoo parlors, sign painters and beauty salons, among countless other businesses whose services contain some expressive element, would all be free to hang out signs refusing to serve Muslims, women, the disabled, African Americans or any other group.”

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