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Want to know what is on our minds? Find blog posts written here, by the City Club staff, members, and partners. Every week you can find a new edition of #FreeSpeech in the News — a collection of related stories, commentary, and opinions on free speech in the 21st century that’s making the news. You’ll also find takes on current events, past forums, and issues surrounding Northeast Ohio. Read on for all things City Club.

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Monday, December 18, 2017


Bliss Davis, Content Coordinator, The City Club of Cleveland


As the Citadel of Free Speech here in Cleveland, we work to protect and promote the basis of our democracy by sharing related stories, commentary, and opinions on free speech in the 21st century. Here's what's making the news – and what you should know about – in the past week.

“Glenn Greenwald, author, Pulitzer-winning journalist and cofounder of the Intercept, says: I think it's a really important truth to recognise that just as a matter of pragmatism, there's no such thing as banning ideas.”

Should free speech be protected, no matter what?, Al Jazeera

“It would allow the government to enforce norms of civility – as with laws punishing blasphemy and profanity. It would allow punishment of falsehoods – as through expansive use of libel law to extract big damage awards from newspapers and broadcasters”

What If the Founders Had Free Speech Wrong?, Bloomberg

Recent attacks on U.S.-tied media outlets in Eastern Europe are part of an unsettling movement against liberal democracy. But they are also a reminder of the costs of America’s fading role as a defender of free speech across the world.

Losing Faith in Free Speech Has Consequences, Bloomberg

“But using a stopwatch and two high-definition video cameras, Jarlstrom ran his own tests on the intersection where his wife was ticketed. He said his findings showed that the intersection’s yellow lights ran on average 0.14 second, or 4 percent, shorter than advertised.”

Minor traffic dispute escalates to free-speech battle in Oregon, The Seattle Times

“The lawsuit challenges the constitutionality of the university's freedom of expression zones, which set the times and places for speeches and demonstrations.”

Conservative nonprofit sues Arkansas State over free speech, Arkansas Online

“With the assumption that absolute, unlimited speech is a natural freedom it becomes very difficult to cogently justify any limits over speech whatsoever (a parallel problem occurs with all such notions of rights, notably of late those around guns). Suddenly, even reasonable attempts to protect some public good become full-blown assaults on individual rights.”

Free-speech absolutists aren’t protecting democracy. They might even be endangering it., The Washington Post

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