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Author Archive | 1stamendmnt

The Press Goes Full Donner Party

BY DAVID SNYDER—As 2018 slouches onward, an already embattled news media has found itself ever more isolated and mistrusted. Just one depressing frame from the lowlight reel: according to a recent poll by Axios, nearly all Republicans (93%), and a majority of Democrats (53%), believe traditional news outlets knowingly report false or misleading stories “at […]

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FAC Urges Ninth Circuit to Protect Journalists Who Publish Sensitive Government Information

The First Amendment Coalition (FAC) on Friday filed a “friend of court”  brief in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, urging that court to reverse a federal district court ruling that jeopardizes important First Amendment protections for journalists who publish sensitive or classified government information. The lower court dismissed claims by the ACLU that the […]

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FAC Sues San Diego District Attorney’s Office for Sexual Harassment, Misconduct Records

The First Amendment Coalition (FAC) today filed suit against the county of San Diego to force the disclosure of records relating to allegations of sexual misconduct against its District Attorney’s Office. (You can read the filed petition below.) The office has refused to release the records, which clearly must be disclosed under the California Public Records […]

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A&A: PRA Requested Documents Withheld Due to “Attorney-Client Privilige”

Q: Cal Fire claims to have released all documents related to a request with the exception of “documents that are protected by attorney-client privilege.” Is there a way to find out what was redacted/withheld? A:  It appears that Cal Fire invoked the attorney-client privilege exemption in order to withhold the documents. In general, California law […]

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A&A: Is Artist’s Conviction for Pornographic Drawings Legal?

Q: I draw, from my imagination, pornographic scenes that I sometimes distribute to consenting adults. I have been convicted for possessing pornography for having these drawings. Is my conviction legal? A: Visual arts and entertainment constitute protected forms of expression under the First Amendment. See White v. City of Sparks, 500 F.3d 953 (9th Cir. 2007); Ward v. Rock […]

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A&A: Charged as “disorderly person” for asserting my right to free speech by yelling at protesters

Q:  I was recently charged as a “disorderly person” after yelling out of my car window, “get off my lawn you fucking faggots,” as I passed people engaged in a protest. Is what I said protected by the First Amendment? A: Speech that insults someone because of race, gender or sexual orientation is understood in general parlance as “hate speech.”  […]

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