November 3, 2023 12:58 pm

Idaho “No Public Funds for Abortion” Act Doesn’t Preclude Pro-Abortion Speech by Professors

Idaho’s Attorney General Raúl Labrador so opines, including a rousing defense of academic freedom, including in scholarship and teaching.

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November 3, 2023 12:50 pm

These Public Officials Blocked Critics on Social Media. Was That Constitutional?

The Supreme Court considers whether and when banishing irksome constituents violates the First Amendment.

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November 3, 2023 11:22 am

S. Ct. Will Hear NRA’s Case Alleging That N.Y. Government Coerced Companies to Stop Doing Business with NRA

The controversy is similar to part of the controversy in Murthy v. Missouri (formerly Missouri v. Biden), which also involves allegations of government coercion aimed at interfering with speech.

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November 3, 2023 10:31 am

Nate Silver’s “Free Speech Is in Trouble”

An excellent article about a recent survey of college students, by a man who knows a thing or two about surveys. A couple of short excerpts, though you should read the whole thing: [A]fter seeing the latest polling on what college students think about free speech, I don’t concern over “cancel culture” or the erosion…

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November 3, 2023 6:07 am

False Accusation of Having Used a Slur Lead to Damages Award and Possible Punitives

From Cody v. Dirir, decided last Friday by Connecticut Superior Court Judge Donna Wilkerson Brillant, the court’s findings of fact: On October 12, 2022 [likely should say 2019 -EV], the plaintiff and the defendant were students at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Connecticut (University). They did not know each other until October 12, 2022…

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November 3, 2023 5:33 am

“Can a Public Official Block You on Social Media?,” with Prof. Jeff Rosen, Prof. David Cole, and Me

Jeff Rosen is the head of the National Constitution Center; David Cole is the National Legal Director of the ACLU; we discuss the Supreme Court’s cases on the subject, which were argued Tuesday.

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November 3, 2023 5:01 am

Sixth Circuit Serial Personal Jurisdiction Litigant Kathy Griffin Makes More Precedent

If you want to sue someone, you have to do it in a court that has “personal jurisdiction” over that person; that, courts have held, is required by the Due Process Clause. One way to make sure of this is to sue where the defendant lives (to oversimplify in some measure). But you can also…

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November 3, 2023 4:00 am

This City Wants To Ban Gun Ads at the Airport

Commercial speech enjoys First Amendment protections, whether politicians like it or not.

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November 2, 2023 3:13 pm

Libel Suit: Former Trump National Security Advisor Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn vs. Former Lincoln Project Director Fred Wellman

Defendant had (among other things) tweeted about Flynn, “He’s a traitor. He’s being paid by Putin. Stop pretending Flynn hasn’t forsaken his oath to the nation for money.” Flynn’s Complaint, filed today in Flynn v. Wellman (M.D. Fla.), claims this was a deliberate lie.

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November 2, 2023 11:36 am

English Police Apparently Arrest Man for Criticizing Immigration of Supporters of Palestinians

From the Express (UK) (Max Parry) (expurgation, of course, in the news story): The arrest, made at 9.55pm on Tuesday, October 31 in east London, comes after a video was posted on Facebook where the person behind the camera appears to condemn the number of Palestinian flags on Bethnal Green Road. The person filming appears…

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November 2, 2023 1:00 am

Brickbat: The Crime of Reporting

An Iranian court has sentenced two journalists to more than a decade in prison for their coverage of the death Mahsa Amini. Amini died last year in the custody of the morality police after being arrested for violating the nation’s Islamic dress code. Niloofar Hamedi and Elaheh Mohammadi received sentences of 13 and 12 years…

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November 1, 2023 4:13 pm

A Rare Order Calling for Defendant-Side Pseudonymity,

and a much more common rejection of plaintiff-side pseudonymity.

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November 1, 2023 6:38 am

Government Blocking of “Tornado Cash” Cryptocurrency-Related Service Was Legal, Didn’t Violate First Amendment

From Monday’s opinion by Judge T. Kent Wetherell, II (N.D. Fla.) in Coin Center v. Yellen (for a similar decision, see this August post about Van Loon v. Dep’t of Treasury): Plaintiffs argue that [the government’s restriction on the use of] Tornado Cash [a mechanism for further anonymizing cryptocurrency transactions] violated the First Amendment because…

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