Freedom of Speech

Freedom of Speech is…

The right to think and say what we want without interference from the government.

History of Freedom of Speech

James Madison, author of the Bill of Rights Original Bill of Rights

Freedom of Speech in World War I
Many U.S. citizens opposed the involvement in the war . Therefore many people spoke against the government using their freedom of speech right.

The war created many conflicts with people and their freedom of speech.

History of Freedom of Speech continued…

Kentucky and Virginia Resolves

Thomas Jefferson’s Republican party ; The Alien and Sedition Acts were passed to try to destroy this party.

Alien and Sedition Acts

The Alien and Sedition Acts of 1789

United States vs. American Library Association

V S.

Miller Vs. California

Tinker Vs. Des Moines

Bethel Vs. Vs.


Free Speech Today
- The founding fathers didn't account for new

technologies they had now knowledge of - Modern technologies has made interpreting the law for the courts difficult - There are many debates about how to censor the web          * such as possible terrorist sites and sites that go against the government but the government           * Government doesn't have power over all websites available on the web          * there is debate as to whether the government has the authority to block different websites from citizens like they can censor

Free Speech Today cont'd
 - There are many issues about copyrights and what

people have the right to use on the web         * such as crediting in things such as youtube videos          * Or using images made by other people on your website or blog - Many videos of popular movies as well as television shows are available on the web and are available for free despite the copyright infringements forcing many film companies to loose large sums of money - There is no way to keep people who make copyright infringements on the web in check

Freedom of Speech Issues and Limitations
The Harm Principle Vs. the Offence Principle

“The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant…” – John Stuart Mill

Internet Vulnerable

Patriot Act
Section 802: The definition of Domestic Terrorism.

Section 215: Permits FBI to seek records from libraries and bookstores.

Importance of Freedom of Speech

If the government doesn’t know what the citizens are thinking then it could be very dangerous because there could be a major riot, protest, etc.

Freedom of Speech in the 2008 Election

Two men in NJ stood at a busy intersection holding this sign, practicing their freedom of speech.

Freedom of Speech in Iraq

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