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 to assemble peacefully, and to petition the Government for e redress of grievances.
The first and inargueably the most significant of the amendments to our Constitution is the First Amendment. The amendment that established our freedoms as citizens of our new confederation. The First Amendment insured, among other things, freedom of speech and of the press. Since the establishment of these rights, they have often been in question. People have debated over, "What is too much freedom?", and "When is this freedom not enough?" I believe that these rights were established to protect the people, and as a society, we must try to determine whether they are.
One of the major organizations that exercises free speech is the press. The press has coined the phrase, "It is the people's First Amendment right to know." This first example best relates to a situation we have now; that of national crisis. The press has the right to release information to the public, but they must use judgment in what they release. Certain news that they might release could put people in danger, therefore taking away the right of all people to be safe. For many years, the idea of the press telling too much has been made fun of. In popular movies and televison shows, there have been jokes made about military and political leaders in enemy nations tuning in for news that surpasses there own logistics. Our freedoms are a subject of ridicule and we must make an effort to censor certain critical information. We must also abridge the freedom of speech when it takes away from other rights that each citizen is guaranteed, like the right to privacy, or to a fair judicial process. There must also be laws that prevent false information from being released, intentionally or unintentionally. It is easy to take advantage of a person, by offering a fantastic new product that promises to do what no other product could do. It is the responsibility of the government to make sure that the people aren't being lied to, and that this new product is not just a way to cheat people.
When considering situations where censorship is necessary, it is important to analyze who might need protection. Often, children need to have the material they watch censored, because they themselves cannot distinguish how raw the material they are watching is. We need to protect our youth, as well as people of all other ages from that kind of raw material. It is possible that the material could be something of the hating nature. I believe that even though hate speech is not a possitive use of free speech, it is a right that is everyone's to practice. It is only when that speech begins to...