1. Historically, protesters seeking First
Amendment protection were more leftist
or liberal in nature and tended to protest
against the government, such as during
the Vietnam War era. See, e.g., Cohen v.
California, 403 U.S. 15 (1971). 2017 saw
the rise of alt-right protesters with hate
9. In September, the University of California
– Berkeley spent about $600,000 to erect
concrete barriers and pay for the massive
police presence required to keep violence
down at a speech given by conservative
columnist/speaker Ben Shapiro, where the
“antifa” (short for anti-fascists) protested.
See n. 7. Unfortunately, the antifa, in its
goal of combatting white supremacists, has
embraced the same destructive, violent
tactics as those they oppose in combating
the far-right message.
10. Floyd Abrams, one of the preeminent
First Amendment attorneys in the U.S.,
explains in his recently released book,
The Soul of the First Amendment (Yale
University Press 2017), how and why
the First Amendment provides the most
rigorous free speech protection in the
11. The U.S. Supreme Court, in Gitlow v. New
York, 268 U.S. 652 (1925), first applied the
First Amendment to the states.
12. Thus, the First Amendment does not
protect NFL football players who kneel
down during the national anthem to protest
mistreatment of blacks.
13. Reed v. Town of Gilbert, 135 S.C. 2218
14. Tinker v. Des Moines Independent School
District, 393 U.S. 503 (1968).
15. Terminiello v. Chicago, 337 U.S. 1 (1949).
16. Citizens United v. Federal Election Com-
mission 558 U.S. 310 (2010).
18. R.A.V. v. City of St. Paul, 505 U.S. 377, 382
19. See, e.g., C. Edwin Baker, Scope of First
Amendment Freedom of Speech, 25
U.C.L.A. L. Rev. 964 (1978).
20. Ashcroft v. Free Speech Coalition, 535 U.S.
234, 253 (2002).