Civil Liberties Round Robin

Choose a topic relating to CIVIL LIBERTIES (Freedom of religion/speech/press/assembly/petition) to research and present to class. Pick from the topics below, or if you have a
different First Amendment topic you'd like to research, please run your topic past me before you begin your work and then add your topic to this page.
Work in groups of up to three.
Only one group per topic per class.

First come, first served.
You do NOT have to write anything down or turn anything in, just present your topic for ten minutes (+/- 3 minutes) to the class.

Do the following for your topic. Your entire grade will be based on how well you cover the following six things.
1-Summarize the topic.
2-Show us the topic (share the video, photo, audio from this page, or feel free to post any additional links or data on this page).
3-Explain your opinion on the topic.
4-Discuss any court decisions on the case.
5-Explain how this case affects you.
6-Answer any questions from me or the class (accurately)

Sign up (first come first served) on the board in class. Feel free to edit any information or videos onto this website.

Here are the topics and some links and videos! Good luck.

Court Case and Explanation of ruling
Bong Hits For Jesus - Student Speech - Freedom of Speech
In Morse v Frederick (2006) the Supreme Court ruled 5 to 4 that schools can limit student speech that advocates illegal drug use. The majority opinion held that although students do have some right to political speech even while in school, this right does not extend to pro-drug messages. The majority held that Frederick's message, was reasonably interpreted as promoting marijuana use. In ruling for Morse, the Court affirmed that the speech rights of public school students are not as extensive as those adults normally enjoy, and that the highly protective standard set by Tinker would not always be applied to students.
Westboro Baptist Church - Freedom of assembly/freedom of speech/hate speech

Snyder v Phelps
Civil Liberties Round Robin - Creative Classrooms

Teaching Creationism/Intelligent Design in Public Science Classes

Kitzmiller v Dover Area School District
Freedom of Speech for Students on the Internet

J.S. v Bethlehem Area School District
Cyber Freedom of Speech?
Internet freedom of speech video
Summum and statues in public parks Pleasant Grove City v. Summum Slate Article on Summum
Reynolds v US
Flag Burning

Texas v Johnson
  • regarding a man named Gregory Johnson
  • protested in Dallas, Tx at a Republican Covention in 1984
  • protesting against Regan's policies
  • convicted and recieved a $2000 fine!
Spence v. Washington
  • Supreme Court ruled that affixing peace sign stickers to a flag is a form of constitutionally preotected speech.
  • This caused most states in the 80's or 90's to revise their flag desecration laws to meet the standards of the ruling of the Supreme Court.

Neo-Nazis and Hate speech

National Socialist Party v Skokie

Civil Liberties Round Robin - Creative Classrooms
First Amendment-
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

Use of Marijuana/peyote/drugs in religion

Employment Division v. Smith

And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed

Genesis 1:29

Freedom of the Press
NY Times v. Sullivan
Censorship of Internet ACLU v Reno
Pledge of Allegiance
Elk Grove Unified School District v. Nedow
Public displays of religious holidays

Cross Burning

Richard Schneider
Justice O'Connor said:
  • “The First Amendment permits Virginia to outlaw cross burnings done with the intent to intimidate because burning a cross is a particularly virulent form of intimidation. Instead of prohibiting all intimidating messages, Virginia may choose to regulate this subset of intimidating messages in light of cross burning's long and pernicious history as a signal of impending violence. Thus, just as a State may regulate only that obscenity which is the most obscene due to its prurient content, so too may a State choose to prohibit only those forms of intimidation that are most likely to inspire fear of bodily harm … the prima facie provision strips away the very reason why a State may ban cross burning with the intent to intimidate. The prima facie evidence provision permits a jury to convict in every cross-burning case in which defendants exercise their constitutional right not to put on a defense. And even where a defendant like Black presents a defense, the prima facie evidence provision makes it more likely that the jury will find an intent to intimidate regardless of the particular facts of the case. The provision permits the Commonwealth to arrest, prosecute, and convict a person based solely on the fact of cross burning itself.
  • “It is apparent that the provision as so interpreted 'would create an unacceptable risk of the suppression of ideas.' … The act of burning a cross may mean that a person is engaging in constitutionally proscribable intimidation. But that same act may mean only that the person is engaged in core political speech. The prima facie evidence provision in this statute blurs the line between these two meanings of a burning cross. As interpreted by the jury instruction, the provision chills constitutionally protected political speech because of the possibility that a State will prosecute—and potentially convict—somebody engaging only in lawful political speech at the core of what the First Amendment is designed to protect.”

Read more:The Supreme Court: Allowing Cross Burning
Fighting words

Obscenity laws

Protecting the President and Freedom of Speech
Threatening the President of The United States.
Although The First Amendment Protects some freedom of speech; it does not allow one to make threats against the President.
Threats against the President is a Class D felony( punishment is maximum 5 years or more in prison, and a 250,000 dollar fine.
Threatening the President( via email, phone, messaging, Internet, etc.) will be investigated by The Secret Service, although this action must be balanced and decided by The Supreme Court's tolerance for the people's free speech.

Add your own topic here