Category Archives: First Amendment

The FFRF victory in Charleston, Illinois

Here’s a very short video featuring the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s staff attorney Ryan Jayne, who wrote the letter to the Charleston, Illinois’s city attorney pointing out that their sponsored trip to the Creation Museum and Ark Park was unconstitutional. They won within 24 hours, with Charleston canceling the trip. So where is my second […]

More free speech kerfuffle at Williams College, a school on the road to becoming Evergreen State

Williams College, a very prestigious school in Williamstown, Massachusetts, is currently in the throes of a debate about free speech. In this case the professors (not all of them, but many) want Williams to adopt the Chicago Principles of Free Expression (the “Chicago Principles”). The students, however, don’t want any stinking principles; they want endless […]

UC Berkeley loses lawsuit over its policy of charging right-wing groups more money for security

According to the Daily Californian and the Los Angeles Times, the University of California at Berkeley (UCB) has just settled a free-speech lawsuit involving discrimination against student groups that brought in conservative speakers. Click on screenshot below to see the Daily Cal piece (that’s the UCB student paper): The first speakers at issue were Ann Coulter, […]

Victory! Charleston, Illinois cancels city-sponsored trip to creationist sites

I’ve just heard from the FFRF that the City Attorney for Charleston, Illinois, to whom the FFRF wrote to about the unconstitutionality of their city-sponsored trip to the Ark Park and Creation Museum, has sent the following email. The city has bailed. Thank you for your email below and letter attached dated December 3, 2018. […]

The Freedom From Religion Foundation intervenes in Charleston, Illinois’s entanglement with the Ark Park and Creation Museum

Yesterday I reported that the Parks and Recreation Department of Charleston, Illinois was sponsoring a trip for locals to visit Ken Ham’s Ark Park as well as his Creation Museum—both in nearby Kentucky. You don’t have to know much about the Constitution to realize that this is a violation of the First Amendment, as it […]

State government apparently sponsors religious trip

The Charleston, Illinois Parks and Recreation Department is giving local citizens the opportunity to visit, yes, Ken Ham’s Ark Park and Creation Museum. The links are below, and there’s a fee for the trip, but that doesn’t matter: it violates the state sponsorship of religion prohibited by the First Amendment. It’s like a city government […]

Hijabs and religious head coverings okay in Congress, secular hats not? Religion once again gets a pass

As you’ve surely heard, Ilhan Omar was elected to the House of Representatives this year. She’ll be representing a district in Minnesota, and is one of the first two Muslim-American women to be elected to Congress. She’s also the first hijabi elected to Congress (the other woman, Rashida Tlaib, isn’t a hijabi). Omar always wears […]

Tennessee schools required to display “In God We Trust” motto

You may have heard that, back in March, the Tennessee legislature passed a bill (vote 81-8!) requiring the U.S. National Motto, which happens to be “In God We Trust”, to be displayed on the walls of all public schools. (The legislature is Republican, but not 91% Republican.) As WATE in Knoxville reports, this blatantly unconstitutional […]

The New Yorker tones down its advocacy of free speech

It was inevitable: the New Yorker, a liberal organ, has, like the liberal American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), started waffling on free speech because it may be offensive and damaging to some groups. In other words, because the First Amendment conflicts with “social justice”, says the magazine, we must temper our advocacy of free speech. This […]

NYT legal columnist: Let’s rethink the First Amendment now that it’s being used by conservatives

My title may be exaggerated a tad, but not that much, for the point of Adam Liptak’s article (click on screenshot below) is that conservatives are starting to use the First Amendment to defend or buttress legal decisions that liberals don’t like, and therefore the First Amendment is outdated or should be reexamined. The title […]