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.

I have a question regarding the First Amendment that I am a little unsure about. We are  guaranteed freedom of speech by the Constitution. However, does that only apply to the federal government's relationship with the people, specifically with Congress, OR does it apply to everyday life, such as in the work place and at schools? In other words, does the First Amendment protect our freedom of speech everywhere?

Views: 28

Comment by Robin on June 25, 2017 at 9:08am

Yes, we do have freedom of speech. It does apply to everyday life, however, at work or school, on private property there are limits on what is considered free speech. Example: you can't yell fire in a crowded theatre. You can cuss someone out at work but be prepared to suffer the consequences of being fired. You can't incite violence because that is against the law, even though we don't see many on the left being arrested for it. You can't make terroristic threats against someone, like telling them you are going to come back and set their house on fire. That too is a crime. We all have freedom of speech, to say what we want, but, there are consequences that come along with it.       

Comment by Rahthrae (Admin.) on June 25, 2017 at 9:26am

Here are a few case examples you might informative:

http://www.uscourts.gov/about-federal-courts/educational-resources/...

There are some litmus tests.  Will the speech bring about harm to another?  Does the speech infringe on another's right whereas a balance must be considered to determine which carries more weight.  You can cuss in my home.  I have the right to make you leave my home.  A business can have a prayer at a Christmas dinner.  They cannot force you to engage in the activity.  You do not have the right to prevent them from saying the prayer. 

This is because of the following: It is their private property.  They have the right to practice their religion.  They cannot force you to practice their religion.  You do not have a right to not be offended. 

This is similar to your right to swing your arms stops at the end of my nose.

I hope this helps.

Comment by Watchman on July 4, 2017 at 1:13pm

Yes it did help Rahthrae, thank you both for posting.

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