October 17, 2006 |
In a setback for the Boy Scouts, the Supreme Court turned away a free-speech challenge to a Berkeley policy that denies city-subsidized dock space to a Scouting group because it excludes gays and atheists. The court's action lets stand rulings in California and elsewhere that have said cities, schools and colleges may deny public benefits to groups that refuse to comply with broad nondiscrimination rules involving religion and sex orientation.
October 6, 2006 |
Turkey will be the featured country at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2008, a choice that could invite controversy after two recent court cases raised questions about freedom of expression in the European Union candidate. Turkish publishers consider the honor a chance to shift the spotlight from the 2006 court cases to its cultural heritage and the 20,000 books published each year in the country.
October 3, 2006 |
In a setback for lawyer and TV commentator Gloria Allred, the Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear a free-speech challenge to the increasingly common practice of judges issuing "gag orders" for all the lawyers in highly publicized criminal cases. The order turning down Allred's appeal came on an unusually quiet first day of the court's fall session. By law, the justices open their term on the first Monday of October.
September 27, 2006 |
Fifty-six Kurdish mayors went on trial in Turkey's latest freedom-of-speech case. They are accused of helping terrorists by writing a letter arguing to keep a Kurdish television station on the air. The Danish-based Roj television station is banned in Turkey. It often features leaders of the main outlawed Kurdish guerrilla group speaking by satellite telephone from northern Iraq. Their comments are accompanied by images of rebels being trained or attacking Turkish soldiers.
September 22, 2006 |
One of Turkey's leading authors, Elif Shafak, was acquitted of "insulting Turkishness" -- a charge that many Turks viewed as an embarrassment and an obstacle to joining the European Union. The speedy court decision was seen as a step toward securing greater freedom of speech, but critics said that until the law was abolished, Turkey would remain a place where authors were regularly put on trial. Analysts said the government was reluctant to change the law because it had broad support.
July 4, 2006 |
Marchers in today's Fourth of July parade will be able to carry signs reading "Support Our Troops ... Bring Them Home Now," according to a compromise decision hammered out Monday among the village, the marchers and a federal judge. After complaints about those signs last year, the village's parade committee ruled that no "political propaganda" or advertising could be carried by marchers, and that signs should only reflect the themes of the parade -- "Let Freedom Ring" and "Support Our Troops."
April 26, 2006 |
Seven young artists sued New York City on Tuesday over its strict anti-graffiti law, saying it violated their constitutional right to free speech. The group, backed by fashion designer Mark Ecko, argued in federal court that the city went too far by banning people who are younger than 21 from possessing spray paint or broad-tipped markers.
April 21, 2006 |
Abortion rights advocates argued before an appeals court in St. Louis that a South Dakota law requiring abortion doctors to warn patients about the procedure forces physicians to give inaccurate information and infringes on their free-speech rights. A panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard the challenge by Planned Parenthood of South Dakota, North Dakota and Minnesota.
April 2, 2006 |
Federal prosecutors, trumpeting the indictment last year of two pro-Israel lobbyists who allegedly obtained U.S. defense secrets from a former Pentagon analyst, said the men had crossed a "clear line in the law." But that line is turning out to be not so clear, and the government's high-profile case might be unraveling. A federal judge is considering throwing out or reducing the charges before the ex-lobbyists' trial begins this month. Last week, U.S. District Judge T.S.
March 20, 2006 |
When he spoke to Muslim students last year at a conference in Tucson, the top chaplain in New York City's jail system talked tough to his audience, making comments that drew no media attention. Umar Abdul-Jalil said "predators" should not be released from jail into the Muslim community, singling out Omar Abdel Rahman, the blind cleric who plotted to blow up the World Trade Center. He criticized the lack of work reentry programs for Muslim inmates.