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Freedom of Speech

Freedom of the speech means I have the right to speak my mind anywhere any time. Discuss.

Please be specific and cite any references.

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Americans assume that free speech means that they may say anything to anyone regardless of its content. Sir William Blackstone defined freedom of speech as the "lack of prior restraint" (Bollinger & Geoffrey, 2002). What he meant by this is that the government could not stop a citizen from speaking out against the government so long as what was said was not forbidden. These restrictions were sedition, defamation and blasphemy. Of course now, sedition (speaking out against ones government) is widespread among the United States and blasphemy runs rampant; however, defamation is not as well ...

Solution Summary

Americans assume that free speech means that they may say anything to anyone regardless of its content. Sir William Blackstone defined freedom of speech as the "lack of prior restraint" (Bollinger & Geoffrey, 2002). What he meant by this is that the government could not stop a citizen from speaking out against the government so long as what was said was not forbidden. These restrictions were sedition, defamation and blasphemy. Of course now, sedition (speaking out against ones government) is widespread among the United States and blasphemy runs rampant; however, defamation is not as well received and can, in many cases, be cause for suit against a person.

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