Constitution Daily

Smart conversation from the National Constitution Center

First Amendment

Confederate monuments debate heads to the courts

January 30, 2018 By Scott Bomboy

Do local governments have the ability to remove monuments in public spaces that commemorate the Confederacy, its military or its leaders? The heated debate is now heading through the legal system after a very public controversy last year.

How Dr. King cited the Constitution in his Mountaintop speech

January 15, 2018 By NCC Staff

On April 3, 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. made his last public speech, which referenced the Bible and the Constitution. His words still inspire millions today.

When Festivus was recognized as a religion for several months

December 23, 2017 By NCC Staff

Six years ago, an inmate in California and his lawyer convinced a judge that the Seinfeld-inspired holiday Festivus was a legitimate religious activity. The story made national headlines, but it also contained a few lessons about the legal system—and kosher food.

Five items Congress deleted from Madison’s original Bill of Rights

December 15, 2017 By NCC Staff

When James Madison spoke to the First Congress he proposed nearly 20 amendments as a Bill of Rights, and not the 10 we all know about. So what did Congress delete from the final list that was ratified by the states?

A review of the season’s lawsuits about holiday displays

December 11, 2017 By Scott Bomboy

For millions of Americans, December brings celebrations of religious and secular holidays. But the uniqueness of the season also brings lawsuits that center on First Amendment principles – and how people display their feelings.

Justice Anthony Kennedy’s new constitutional dilemma

December 5, 2017 By Lyle Denniston

Over the years, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy has become the Supreme Court’s most energetic defender of gay rights, one of its true devotees to free speech,   and a sympathetic defender of religious believers.  Now, a lengthy hearing before the Justices on Tuesday showed, he has to find a way to reconcile all three.

Supreme Court denies Westboro funeral protest appeal

November 27, 2017 By Scott Bomboy

Without comment, the United States Supreme Court denied an appeal from the Westboro Baptist Church on Monday about a Nebraska law that restricts its ability to protest at funerals.

Supreme Court takes political clothing at polls case

November 14, 2017 By Scott Bomboy

On Monday, the Supreme Court accepted an appeal about the ability of a voter to wear clothing or campaign buttons at a polling place that endorses a political cause.

Justices to rule on abortion foes’ rights

November 13, 2017 By Lyle Denniston

Taking on a deeply controversial question about the rights of abortion foes when they set up counseling and treatment centers for pregnant women, the Supreme Court agreed on Monday to review the constitutionality of a two-year-old California law setting rules on what those facilities tell patients.

Justice Department insists Trump Twitter account is private

October 18, 2017 By NCC Staff

In legal papers filed late last week, Justice Department lawyers want a federal court to dismiss a First Amendment lawsuit about President Donald Trump’s Twitter account.

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