In a working democracy, the people retain rights and the government exercises power. The government is often called upon to assert its power when individual rights clash: my right to speak, even to speak hatefully, vs your right to live a life in the pursuit of happiness; or my right to own a gun vs your right to be safe from undue harm. Then, the government steps in and puts its finger on the scale to pronounce a winner. The balance is certainly hard to strike, but the scale seems out-of-whack in Florida and Texas — regarding both First and Second Amendment rights.
The United States Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit helped to readjust the balance, at least with regard to the First Amendment, when it held unconstitutional the Florida Law that sought to regulate the content of social media platforms. And the Supreme Court added its weight when it upheld an injunction, stopping in its tracks a Texas law that ostensibly…Read More
Lynn Greenky is an Associate Teaching Professor at Syracuse University in the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies. She teaches a beloved undergraduate course about the First Amendment. She is the author of When Freedom Speaks: The Boundaries and Boundlessness of the First Amendment. You can follow her on Instagram @LynnGreenky.