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Essay On Freedom Of Speech

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The riveting court case of Texas v Johnson challenges the limits of the First Amendment, particularly freedom of speech. The First Amendment 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. Texas vs Johnson revolves around the burning of the American flag, and deciding whether that constitutes as freedom of speech, or not. This essay will cover the background of the court case, followed by an explanation of why court cases such as these are important issues to examine. Next, two sides, one against the…show more content…
This is the reasoning that this court case is an important issue, because it is an example of the problems that arise from having such a vague description of freedom of speech in the Constitution. Addressing this topic can help reduce the amount of disputes concerning the amendments and their restrictions, so that no one is offended
To better understand the court case, historical background of the situation is necessary. In 1984, a Republican Convention was being held in Dallas, Texas for Ronald Reagan the administration. Gregory Lee Johnson, along with others, partook in a political demonstration against the policies of the Reagan administration and some Dallas-based corporations. In light of the march, Johnson doused the American flag in kerosene and set it aflame. Although no one was injured amidst the flag burning, people were seriously offended by Johnson’s actions. He was then convicted with desecration of a venerated object in violation of the Texas Penal Code. “However, the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals reversed, holding that the State, consistent with the First Amendment, could not punish Johnson for burning the flag in these circumstances.” The supreme court initially decided that Johnson's burning of the American flag was a form of expression that was deemed as admissible by the First Amendment. The court
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