Political Science: Supreme Court and The Limits on Expression
Discuss the approaches that have been used by the Supreme Court to define the limits on expression. How have these approaches been applied in specific cases?
In spite of the fact that the Supreme Court has strongly guarded the right to speech under the first amendment, the court has also foisted restrictions on speech for the sake of protecting other rights. The rights in privilege of protection include security against danger, maintenance of public order and protection of the government. The Supreme Court has over time used the imminent lawless action for the evaluation of the legitimacy of speech as pertaining any opposition to the government.
There are several categories of restrictions by the Supreme Court. The categories include; Firstly, Content based restrictions that apply to particular viewpoints and not to others and require high level of scrutiny. An example of such a kind of restriction is the ruling of the Legal Services Corp. v. Velazquez in 2001 that dealt with discrimination against situations of viewpoint advocacy. One of the ways that the court has used in defining the limits of expression under this circumstance is on evaluation if the speaker gave different information under identical circumstances as per Snyder v. Phelps (2011)
The second category is the time place and manner restrictions. This approach is guided by the Grayned v. The City of Rockford (1972) which demanded the application of immediate scrutiny. The court under Ward v. Rock against Racism (1989) set out that a speech must be content neutral, narrowly tailored not conflict with the interests of the government and be open-ended. In addition, the court can apply limits to expression depending on the zones of free speech. The concept was also applied in Clark v. Community for Creative Non-Violence (1984) in combination with the public forum doctrine.
Apart from the application in Grayned v. Rockford (1972), the restriction with reference to time, place and manner has been applied in The City of Chicago'' v. ''Alexander (2014). Also in Hess v. Indiana where the Supreme Court argued that the speech involved in the case by Hess did not point to any person or group of individuals thus couldn’t be assumption that the speaker meant any …