Posted by: John Gillmartin | February 28, 2009

FIRST AMENDMENT: The Petition Clause

Does the First Amendment’s “petition” clause protect the people of the USA from a “fairness doctrine”?

Bill of Rights of the United States of America

Bill of Rights

Amendment I

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 phrase “no law” is explicit; but what of the “petition” clause?

In today’s hubbub world, where people have difficulty reaching their government in realistic and personal ways, are the airwaves a constitutional means of redressing the Government “of grievances”? Are the people thus protected by than “freedom of speech” in the amendment?



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