Free Speech : A Free Society

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Understanding Free Speech in a Free Society The United States Constitution granted citizens of the United States several basic liberties. The Bill of Rights 10 which is amendments guaranteeing basic individual protection such as freedom of speech and of religion–became part of the Constitution in 1791 ( While most rights are accepted and welcomed in colleges and universities, free speech comes with limitations. The First Amendment to the US Constitution states: 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 ( With understanding of the First Amendment, one could easily conclude that the amendment protects several basic liberties. Although, many liberties are granted via the First Amendment, free speech is one of the most valued and controversial liberties, It is hard to define and often conflicts with other rights. Due to ongoing controversy regarding the “free speech,” the courts have had to determine and define just what free speech is and what the limits of free speech are. Free speech is not easily defined. Courts have identified three types of free speech, each protected at a different level. ( • Pure speech is
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