Free speech?

By Christopher B. Daly 

Two items today from the Department of Juxtaposition:

The New York Times carries an article exploring the issue of whether the threat of Islamic State terrorism meets the “clear and present danger” test. The piece kicks around the issue with reference to two SCOTUS cases that my students will recognize from the court’s busy 1919 session, when it took up challenges to the First Amendment raised by WWI.*

The same paper has an article about China’s latest efforts to crack down on free speech.

Critics had said that the draft version of the law used a recklessly broad definition of terrorism, gave the government new censorship powers and authorized state access to sensitive commercial data.

Can it be that both countries are over-reaching?

*(Personally, I think the First Amendment is nearly absolute when it comes to protecting the expressions of Americans in America from censorship by the American government. But I feel quite differently about ISIS propagandists penetrating America’s mindspace to incite people to criminal acts.)

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