Essay On First Amendment

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The First Amendment that allows us to have Free Speech is by far probably one of the most important rights we have. One could say that Freedom of speech is as American as eating boiled peanuts at a football game, but the problem is not everyone may like boiled peanuts or football. This right gives people the opportunity to say what’s on their mind without fear of reprisal even if it offends others. Freedoms of speech rights have been interpreted differently throughout history and those interpretations have been questioned many different times, in many different ways. People are always protesting something and as long as it is done in a peaceful manner it is normally legal. That wasn’t always the case though; in the early days colonists…show more content…
According to New York Times article Supreme Court Overturns Conviction in Online Threats Case, Citing Intent Anthony Elonis was convicted for posting violent threats on social media to hurt people. The article states that “the district court informed the jury that a "true threat," which falls outside the scope of First Amendment speech protections, requires an objective intent to threaten” which basically means that Mr. Elonis’ actions were not protected under the First Amendment. The article goes on to say that “the defense for Elonis argued that "true threats" require a provable plan or an actual attempt to follow through with the threat” , which basically meant that without any actual proof that he was going to follow through with the threats that he shouldn’t be convicted. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit agreed with the lower courts decision. So he took it to the Supreme Court where his conviction was overturned basically due to a technicality in which the lower courts were in error for instructions given to the jurors that the Government needs prove only that a reasonable person would regard Elonis’ communications as threats. Because the lower courts made this mistake Elonis was set free after serving 44 months in jail and his argument that he was just exercising his freedom of speech rights was never really
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