FROM Jesse Choper
The Uses of Social Media and the Right to Free Speech Facebook, Twitter and other social media have allowed Egyptians, Iranians, Chinese and others to challenge repressive governments. The governments, in turn, have been criticized for shutting the media down. Now countries with traditions of protecting free speech face a different challenge. Recent incidents, from London to San Francisco, have led to crackdowns, including prior restraint in the name of law and order. When social media are used to advocate violence, organize riots or coordinate crime, can government block access to the perpetrators and others as well? Will there be new limitations on the right to free speech as the law catches up with the technology?
Same-Sex Marriage in California Same-sex marriage is legal in California, at least until November, when voters are likely to get the chance to overturn last week's ruling by the state supreme court. The Massachusetts Supreme Court was first, back in 2003, the only other state that's legalized same-sex marriage . But the ruling in California went further, saying that discrimination against homosexuals is the same as racial discrimination. Many gays and lesbians are celebrating the opinion by Chief Justice Ron George, a former prosecutor appointed by a Republican Governor. Does the decision nullify "the will of the people," since a statewide same-sex marriage ban passed overwhelmingly eight years ago? Can the people nullify the court that nullified them? What's the likely impact on other states and the presidential campaign?
Terrorism and tweets, hate speech and murder Just days before an election, Britain is coping with a rash of deadly terrorism, and Prime Minister Theresa May is on the defensive. And again today, President Trump has tweeted criticism of the Mayor of London. Later, a double murder in Portland, Oregon has revealed the ugly past of a supposedly “progressive” city. One immediate question: is “hate speech” protected by the First Amendment?
Trump's new look at civil rights and global warming President Trump is reportedly ready to pull the US out of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. We look at the possible consequences. On the second half of the program, we hear about cuts in Obama-Era civil rights programs called for by the Trump Administration's first budget plan.