How Conservatives Weaponized the First Amendment

Can the Left be accused of hypocrisy? Did the Left ever really believe in the 1st Amendment? Please read both pieces at their links: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/30/us/politics/first-amendment-conservatives-supreme-court.html How Conservatives Weaponized the First Amendment Image Trump supporters signing a poster promoting free speech at a rally in 2017 in Berkeley, Calif.CreditJim Wilson/The New York Times June 30, 2018 WASHINGTON — On the final day of the Supreme Court term last week, Justice Elena Kagan sounded an alarm. The court’s five conservative members, citing the First Amendment, had just dealt public unions a devastating blow. The day before, the same majority had used the First Amendment to reject a California law requiring religiously oriented “crisis pregnancy centers” to provide women with information about abortion. Conservatives, said Justice Kagan, who is part of the court’s four-member liberal wing, were “weaponizing the First Amendment.” The two decisions were the latest in a stunning run of victories for a conservative agenda that has increasingly been built on the foundation of free speech. Conservative groups, borrowing and building on arguments developed by liberals, have used the First Amendment to justify unlimited campaign spending, discrimination against gay couples and attacks on the regulation of tobacco, pharmaceuticals and guns. “The right, which had for years been hostile to and very nervous about a strong First Amendment, has rediscovered it,” said Burt Neuborne, a law professor at New York University. The Citizens United campaign finance case, for instance, was decided on free-speech grounds, with the five-justice conservative majority ruling that […]

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