Censorship

Crimes of the Signs

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Last week Chris Pagan, a resident of Glendale, Ohio, succeeded in his seemingly quixotic quest to overturn a city ordinance that threatened him with fines and jail time for putting a "For Sale" sign in the window of a car parked on the street in front of his house. The full U.S. Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit ruled (PDF) that the sign ban, which does not apply to equally obtrusive noncommercial speech, violates the First Amendment. Overturning a ruling by a three-judge panel of the same court, the 6th Circuit concluded that the city had failed to show that its restrictions were narrowly drawn to directly and materially advance a legitimate regulatory interest. "The whim of government bureaucrats is not enough to justify censorship," said Jeff Rowes, an Institute for Justice attorney who represented Pagan. "This decision puts the burden back on government to justify restrictions on free speech, rather than making people like Chris prove they deserve constitutional protection for their rights."

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  1. I thought I heard something about some terrorist acts in London and Scotland over th last few days. Anyone else hear anything?

  2. They did not succeed and therefore are not newsworthy.

  3. “This decision puts the burden back on government to justify restrictions on free speech, rather than making people like Chris prove they deserve constitutional protection for their rights.”

    Oh Barong,how I wish that were true.

  4. I thought I heard something about some terrorist acts in London and Scotland over th last few days. Anyone else hear anything?

    You will read about that here when you see a comprehensive story about that Jim Webb gun fuss in DC here. Well, I have been away for a while so maybe theyre was a story about the Webb thing a few months after the fact and I missed it.

  5. Okay, but Jacob, how did you resist the temptation to use the lede “Pagan wins 6th Cir. hearing”?

  6. I thought I heard something about some terrorist acts in London and Scotland over th last few days. Anyone else hear anything?

    I heard that some clowns (doctors, no less) had built two non-functioning car bombs (that were little more than propane tanks and jerry cans of petrol) and drove another car into the front of an airport terminal. When this didn’t do much damage, they set themselves on fire. These guys were such fuck-ups that they couldn’t even get the suicide part of the suicide attack right.

    If this what constitutes a “critcal” terrorist threat, I think it’s past time to declare victory in the “War on Terror.” That, or we can sit around wetting ourselves over the terrorist menace.

  7. Right, if Reason doesn’t cover the UK terror attacks, no one will know about them. (Also, the attacks have been mentioned in a few posts–see the Lieberman post below.)

  8. Does every news outlet have to report every crime that happens all over the world? There is not much significance in that story unless you were directly involved or are a government stooge trying to put more fear into the populace…

  9. seemingly quixotic quest

    Huh? It wasn’t just ‘seemingly’, it was a quite quixotic quest. A queerly quaint quixotic quest, maybe even quietly quotidian. But way more than seemingly.

  10. Reason is in the pocket of Big Bungling British Bombers!

  11. OH NOES! SOME GUYS DROVE A CAR INTO A BUILDING! I AM WETTING MYSELF! WITH PH34R! PH34R AND URINE!

  12. It was just a dry run for the…

    [cue dastardly evildoer fanfare] Dunh-dunh-duuuuunh!

    DIRTYBIOBOMB!

    More people were injured as a result of Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds broadcast; that’s some hard core terror, baby.

  13. Ah, Orson Welles. He’d be executed if he pulled that stunt today.

  14. Dirtybiobomb = diapers and a sling shot.

  15. I’m just curious whether his name is Christian or Christoper. Obviously the former is quite a thing.

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