Our forefathers worked to ensure we could enjoy civil liberties that they were unable to under British rule. In the First Amendments one of the liberties detailed is freedom of speech, specifically in that Congress will not enact a law that is “abridging the freedom of speech.” In 1925 the Supreme Court ruled that the First Amendment applies to each state ensuring that the constitutional right to free speech is protected from interference by the government. Freedom of speech can only be upheld so long as the content of which does not violate the law.
On December 15, 1791, the first amendment- along with the rest of the Bill of Rights- was passed by congress. Although the amendment allows verbal freedom to the citizens of America, many argue that it also comes with great risks.The possibility of both mental and physical harm to citizens through the practice of free speech should be taken into consideration. Limiting free speech has potentially saved lives by monitoring what a person can or can not say that could cause distress to the public (e.g.- yelling “bomb” on an airplane). Others argue that the limitation of free speech will hinder our progress as a nation, and could potentially lead to our downfall through governmental corruption. In a society where the freedom of speech is a reality, one must question the risks and limits of that right.
Freedom of speech is probably the most controversial amendment that there is within the Bill of Rights. “The first amendment of is freedom of religion, press, and expression, which states that 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 (Mount, S. 2010).” The first amendment gives the citizens of the U.S. the right to communicate one’s opinions and ideas with fear of government retaliation or censorship. The right to freedom of expression is recognized as a basic human right under article 19 of
One of the second things mentioned in the first amendment is the freedom of speech. This is the most stressed part of the amendment. In some countries (like China) if you speak bad about your government they will take swift action and put you in prison and put you death under the crime of treason. The right of free speech has helped this country break free of racial barriers like the book “Uncle Tom’s Cabin” by Harriet Beacherstowe told about the ways the Blacks were miss treated and the American people were outraged this later lead to the American Civil War. This than freed the slaves.
Free Speech “Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by subduing the freeness of speech.” These words were spoken by Benjamin Franklin, one of our nation’s founding fathers, when the United States was still a newly independent country. Free speech, which is defined as the right to express any opinion in public without censorship or restraint by the government, is a subject that is still present in the minds of many people today. At one extreme of the spectrum is a group of folks that do not care the slightest bit about free speech issues and at another end is a group of people who will vehemently fight to protect their right to free speech.
According to Roger Rosenblatt “since free is the way people's minds were made to be”, freedom of speech is important to speak one's mind in a way that expresses his/her opinion even if this opinion does not seem to convince others. In my opinion, without freedom of speech, the United States would have failed to be such a powerful country as it is today.
The purpose of the free speech is to protect the unpopular voices. It gives the minorities a voice without having to worry about the consequences (Your Rights). Many people over the years have tried to take advantage of the freedom of speech. We are allowed to speak freely about our president and not suffer consequences. Provocative or offensive political opinions are protected by the freedom. This does not entitle you to walk up to someone and threaten them. True threats and obscenity are not protected by the amendment (Your Rights). On one’s own property, one can do anything they want. If they want to have
The Constitution of the United States states in its First Amendment that "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" (Funk & Wagnalls 162). This Amendment guarantees each person of free speech. Does this mean that a person can stand in the middle of the street and yell anything he wants? No, society, even though it cherishes freedom of speech, does give this freedom certain restrictions.