5th period Group 3

Report
Chapters 4&5 Court Cases
By Anabelle Espinoza, Brianna
Watkins, Emma Grundy, Jason
Patrick, Jeremy Lee, Jordan Susac,
Lauren Love, and Summer Florida
MILLER V. CALIFORNIA (1973)
• Marvin Miller was arrested
under California law for massmailing brochures containing
graphic advertisements for
pornographic books and films
• Miller was convicted under a
California statute which banned
“obscene matter”
• Though found guilty in Orange
County’s Superior Court, Miller
appealed the Supreme Court,
who granted him a hearing
• Is mature content
protected under the 1st
Amendment?
MILLER V. CALIFORNIA DECISION
• Ruled 5-4 that Miller was guilty and that the 1st
Amendment rights to speech and press did not
protect porn, but found the definition of “obscene”
to be too broad
• Defined obscenity to be any work that 1) is offensive
to the average person, 2) has explicit and offensive
content “defined by the applicable state law”, and 3)
has no other literary, scientific, political, or artistic
merit
MORSE V. FREDERICK (2007)
• Joseph Frederick, at a schoolsponsored event in Juneau,
Alaska, held up a sign saying
“Bong Hits 4 Jesus”
• Principal Deborah Morse
suspended Frederick for 10
days for his reference to illegal
drugs
• Did Morse violate Frederick’s
right to free speech by punishing
him?
• Frederick won in Ninth
District court, but the school
board appealed the case to
D.C.
MORSE V. FREDRICK DECISION
• Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that Morse was not
violating Frederick’s rights by punishing him
• Established that free speech for teenagers was
not as extensive as the same right for adults, and
that if a student went against a school’s antidrug mission, that student could be punished
NEAR V. MINNESOTA (1931)
• Jay Near published an attack
against local officials in
Minneapolis, saying they were
affiliated with gangsters
• Near was barred from
publishing thereafter by the
Minnesota “gag law,” which
prevented slander of public
figures
• After losing in both District and
Minnesota’s Supreme Court,
Near appealed to the U.S.
Supreme Court
• Does the “gag law” violate
freedom of the press?
NEAR V. MINNESOTA DECISION
• Ruled 5-4 that the gag law was unconstitutional
due to Near’s right to free press
• Press would always be protected by 1st
Amendment, except in rare cases
NEW YORK TIMES V. U.S. (1971)
• The Nixon administration
attempted to prevent the
Washington Post and New York
Times from publishing
information about the
Watergate scandal
• Nixon argued that he had prior
restraint because the
information was on matters of
national security
• Does “national security”
forgo freedom of the
press?
• After many court battles with no
clear victor, the Supreme Court
took the case
NEW YORK TIMES V. U.S. DECISION
• Ruled 6-3 that prior restraint did not permit the
violation of freedom of the press
• Since the nation was not in immediate danger
due to the publication of the “Pentagon Papers,”
Nixon could not stop the presses
ROTH V. U.S. (1957)
• Samuel Roth ran a literary
business in New York City and
was convicted of sending
content to a monthly erotica
magazine
• The statute under which he
was convicted outlawed
“obscene” materials, and Roth
took it up with the Supreme
Court after he submitted a
writ of certiorari
• Was Roth’s 1st
Amendment right to free
speech infringed upon by
New York’s ordinance?
ROTH V. U.S. DECISION
• Supreme Court ruled 6-3 that Roth was guilty,
and that “lewd” materials were not
constitutionally protected
• Because the word “lewd” was poorly-defined, the
same conflict in Miller v. California later
established guidelines for prohibited materials
SHEPPARD V. MAXWELL (1966)
• Sam Sheppard was convicted
of 2nd-degree murder for
bludgeoning his pregnant wife
to death
• Sheppard called for a retrial
after he saw the massive
negative publicity his trial
drew
• After being acquitted in
Appeals court and appealing
again, the case went to the
Supreme Court
• Was Sheppard’s right to a
fair trial compromised?
SHEPPARD V. MAXWELL DECISION
• Supreme Court ruled 8-1 that Sheppard had not
been given a fair trial due to the media’s attacks
on Sheppard, rendering his jury biased
TEXAS V. JOHNSON (1989)
• Is the desecration of
an American flag
permitted under
freedom of speech?
• Gregory Lee Johnson burned
an American flag in front of
Dallas City Hall to protest
Reagan’s policies
• He was sentenced to 1 year in
prison and given a $2000 fine
• The Texas Criminal Appeals
court overturned his arrest,
and the State appealed to the
Supreme Court
TEXAS V. JOHNSON DECISION
• Ruled 5-4 that Johnson’s symbolic speech was
granted under the 1st Amendment
• Said that the public’s offense to a form of speech
does not justify taking it from the speaker
TINKER V. DES MOINES (1969)
• A group of Des Moines students
planned to wear black armbands
in protest of the Vietnam War
• Their school’s principals heard
of this plan and created a policy:
any students wearing the bands
must be asked to remove them
• Does forbidding students’
symbolic protest infringe on
freedom of speech?
• Mary Beth Tinker was sent
home due to this policy, and
after losing in Appeals, went to
the Supreme Court
TINKER V. DES MOINES DECISION
• Supreme Court ruled 7-2 that the armbands
were pure speech which was separate from the
actions or conduct of the participants wearing
them
BOY SCOUTS V. DALE (2000)
• The Boy Scouts of America
revoked scoutmaster James
Dale’s membership after
discovering he was gay
• Dale sued and won in New
Jersey Superior and Supreme
Court on grounds of
discrimination
• Boy Scouts appealed to the
Supreme Court
• Does New Jersey’s antidiscrimination law violate
BSA’s right to assembly?
BOY SCOUTS V. DALE DECISION
• Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that because the Boy
Scouts were a private group, they did not have to
conform to New Jersey’s anti-discrimination
laws, which violated their right to private
assembly
• Because allowing LGBT members is against the
Boy Scouts’ philosophy, they do not have to
admit them
LUKUMI BABALU AYE V. HIALEAH (1993)
• Santería is a religion from the
Caribbean in which animal
sacrifice is frequently used
• Did Hialeah’s ordinance
violate the Free Exercise
Clause?
• Hialeah, Florida passed an
ordinance forbidding animal
sacrifice when it was announced
that a church of Santería was
forming in town
• Lower courts upheld the law,
but the Church of Lukumi
Babalu Aye appealed the case to
Washington and was granted a
trial
LUKUMI BABALU AYE V. HIALEAH DECISION
• Ruled 9-0 that Hialeah’s law violated Lukumi
Babalu Aye’s right to expression of religion
• The fact that Hialeah singled out elements of
Santería killed their case and turned it into one
of discrimination
SMITH V. COLLIN (1978)
• Also known as National
Socialist Party v. Skokie
• Skokie, Illinois rejected the
request of a group of Neo-Nazi
protesters to demonstrate due
to the town’s high number of
Holocaust survivors
• Party’s leader, Frank Collin,
called for hearings but was
rejected in Illinois court until
he contacted the Supreme
Court
• Did the Illinois courts
improperly deny the
Party’s right to protest?
SMITH V. COLLIN DECISION
• Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that the National
Socialist Party’s use of Nazi imagery was not an
issue of clear and present danger, so protest was
allowed due to 1st Amendment rights
• The NSP did not march through Skokie, in the
end; they received permission to do so in
Chicago instead
EDWARDS V. AGUILLARD (1987)
• Louisiana passed a law saying
that if creationism was taught at
a school, then evolution was
required as well, and vice versa
• Did Louisiana’s law violate
the Establishment Clause of
the 1st Amendment?
• District and Appeals courts
ruled against Louisiana, saying
the law promoted religious
tenets
• Governor Edwin Edwards of
Louisiana took the case to D.C.
against a civil suit led by Don
Aguillard, a Louisiana high
school biology teacher
EDWARDS V. AGUILLARD DECISION
• Ruled 7-2 that Louisiana’s law was
unconstitutional because its requiring of
creationism advanced the viewpoint of one
particular religion in a secular setting, violating
the Establishment Clause
ENGEL V. VITALE (1962)
• A state board of regents in
New York wrote a prayer to be
recited at the beginning of
class by schoolchildren
• A Jewish family took offense to
this, and their suit was given
an amicus curiae to the
Supreme Court signed by the
governments of 22 states
• Did the reading of the
prayer violate the
Establishment Clause?
ENGEL V. VITALE DECISION
• The Supreme Court ruled 6-1 (two justices did
not participate) that the prayer violated the
Establishment Clause of the 1st Amendment
• Neither the voluntary nor nondenominational
natures of the prayer saved it from
unconstitutionality
THE END

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