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Purple Project For Democracy: What The Heck Is Free Speech?




The tenet of freedom of speech is perhaps the most cited, misunderstood and debated part of the Bill of Rights.
The tenet of freedom of speech is perhaps the most cited, misunderstood and debated part of the Bill of Rights.
Mitch Blunt/Getty Images/Ikon Images

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Free speech means we can all say whatever we want, whenever we want. Free country, right? Not quite. The First Amendment:  

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.

The tenet of freedom of speech is perhaps the most cited, misunderstood and debated part of the Bill of Rights.
What kind of speech is protected? What kind of speech is not? What’s the squishy grey area in between? We break it down with two legal scholars.

Guests:

Eugene Volokh, law professor at UCLA teaching free speech law; he tweets @VolokhC

Camille Gear Rich, professor of law and sociology at USC