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Tag: 1st Amendment

June 16, 2018

Weekly litigation report — June 16, 2018

Victory for the First Amendment! Challenging Florida's Tone Deaf Hearing Aid Bureaucrats Supreme Court Splits on Salmon Santa Barbara Association of Realtors v. City of Santa Barbara Victory for the First Amendment! Political speech is the most protected type of speech in the country – including in the most restricted space in American civic life ...

October 12, 2017

Public comment reopened for federal wine labeling regulations

Over a year ago, I wrote about a pending federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) regulation that would remove certain common-sense labeling exceptions for wines sold within a single state. As I explained then, under the proposed rule, if a winemaker chooses to label their wine using an "appellation of origin" from a ...

June 20, 2017

Supreme Court victory for The Slants

We’ve been writing about Simon Tam‘s efforts to trademark his Portland, Oregon-based rock band, The Slants, for over a year now. As you’ll recall, Mr. Tam, an Asian-American, formed his band in 2006 and recruited other Asian-Americans to join in order to provide an interesting and entertaining platform to discuss discriminatio ...

May 19, 2017

Yes, the Constitution even protects communists

Naively, I thought that was obvious. But apparently I was wrong. In California, government employees may be fired solely because they are a member of the Communist Party. What if they’re great at their job? Doesn’t matter. What if their ideas are irrelevant to their job? Doesn’t matter. What if they’re the most qualified per ...

February 17, 2017

Major First Amendment victory in Docs v. Glocks case

Yesterday, the 11th Circuit issued its en banc opinions in Wollschlaeger v. Gov. of the State of Florida, AKA the “Docs v. Glocks” case. As previously discussed here, here, and here, the case concerns whether Florida can prohibit doctors from asking their patients about their gun ownership or possession unless the question is directly ...

December 13, 2016

Can the government decline to register disparaging trademarks?

Simon Tam is the frontman of the popular Portland, Oregon, band called The Slants. A few years ago Mr. Tam sought to register The Slants as a trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. While the term has traditionally been used as a derogatory slur for persons of Asian descent, Mr. Tam (an ...

November 22, 2016

PLF challenges Oklahoma law that stifles American Indian artist's speech and right to earn a living

Peggy Fontenot is an award-winning American Indian photographer and artist, specializing in hand-made beaded jewelry and cultural items. For more than 30 years, Ms. Fontenot has traveled the country to show and sell her American Indian art. Because of Oklahoma's deep connections with American Indian history and culture, Ms. Fontenot has regularly p ...

November 19, 2016

Sacramento city councilman reminded that the Constitution protects freedom of association

There was a small dust-up in the Sacramento press this week. It seems that Sacramento City Councilman Jay Schenirer has grown weary of a watchdog organization (Eye on Sacramento) that routinely challenges proposed ordinances and policies, and generally serves as a vocal check on city government. Councilman Schenirer requested the group provide him ...

October 21, 2016

Victory for Nashville property owners and guests

In an important victory for economic liberty and property rights, today, a judge in Nashville, Tennessee agreed that the Nashville Metro Council’s regulations of short-term rentals are unconstitutional. Among other things, the ordinance banned any form of advertising short-term rentals with signage on the property, and capped the number of n ...

September 29, 2016

Supreme Court to hear The Slants' case

This morning, the United States Supreme Court issued the first orders from its September 26th long conference. Among the cases the Court agreed to hear is Michelle K. Lee v. Simon S. Tam. We have previously discussed Mr. Tam’s case here and here. Briefly, Mr. Tam is the frontman of the rock band, The Slants. ...

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