As Americans we learn from a young age about the Bill of Rights and the first ten amendments to the Constitution. First and foremost is the freedom of speech. Ratified December 15, 1791 it states,
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Freedom of speech and the First Amendment is ingrained into the fabric of our society, so much so you’ve probably heard it used as an argument for the controversial kneeling during the anthem at NFL games. While not a literal act of speech, the kneeling is protected as an act of symbolic speech. Symbolic free speech has woven its way in and out of court cases over the last half a century. From Tinker v Des Moines to Spence v Washington, acts that communicate elements from the first amendment and attempt a message with a likelihood to be understood have been protected.
Listen in as Kevin King discusses symbolic free speech, where it came from, and its relation to the current kneeling controversies in football on People’s Law Talk.
Want to hear more talks from Peter and Kevin King? Tune into WCIS 1010 AM Columbus, IN the first and third Friday of every month for People’s Law Talk.