Terminiello v. Chicago Essay

Terminiello v. Chicago Essay

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Terminiello v. Chicago


Issues:

1. Was Terminiello's right to free speech, which is protected under the Federal Constitution, violated, as applied in this case?
2. Was the Chicago ordinance, as defined in this case, unconstitutional in its contents because it failed to provide support for the First Amendment?
3. Was the inclusion of Terminiello's speech as a violation of the Chicago ordinance on disorderly conduct unconstitutional?

1.



Facts:


1.

Assumption/Application:

1.
Conclusion:

The Supreme Court exercised its interpretation of the Constitution and found that a violation of the First Amendment was apparent and therefore, also a violation of the fourteenth Amendment showing that due process of the law was not given.
The logical consequence of the application of the Stromberg case ruling to the Terminiello case was the reversal of the conviction. The Supreme Court did not challenge the constitutionality of the Chicago ordinance, but stated that in this case, free speech can not be denied to anyone even if such speech is considered to be provocative and unpopular in nature. The specifics of the Terminiello conviction were not explicit and, therefore, impenetrable by the inquiries of the Supreme Court. Without exact articulation of the conviction the Court could not dissect the verdict into parts that were applicable to Terminiello's charge and conviction.

Supreme Court of the United States
Terminiello v. Chicago J. Jackson, dissenting

Issue:

1. Does the Supreme Court have the responsibility to interpret the constitutionality of a case, that is brought up for review as it is presented at its face value, or should it consider the ultimate impact that it could have ...


... middle of paper ...


...any historical accounts that are utilized as references.
2. Justice Jackson contends that Terminiello's style and use of derogatory terms and the tone of the speech likened him to the Fascists of Europe.
3. Terminiello is viewed as having escaped conviction due to an interpretational difference
among the justices.

Conclusion:

Justice Jackson's disagreement on the ruling of the Terminiello case is supported by many historical examples which demonstrate that freedom of speech is not an absolute right under the law. Although Terminiello had a right to exercise his right under the First Amendment, had the majority carefully considered this principle it should have rejected his claim. In this case, the majority's treatment of Terminiello's case skirted the real issue and did not benefit from true constitutional interpretation.

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