Monday, November 30, 2015

The Albany Movement 1961-1962

Albany- segregation, very low voter registration, violence against A.A. (sexual assaults at Albany State College), negative treatment of AA in local papers

Full integration- buses, lunch counters, other public facilities (broad attack on every aspect of segregation in the city)

Voter registration campaign

Mobilized thousands of local citizens, NAACP, SNCC (Sherrod, Reagon, Jones- encourage and coordinate activism in the city) Martin Luther King, William J. Anderson selected as the leader

Mass meetings, singing, praying, marches, petitions, boycotts, sit-ins, voter registration drives

Laurie Pritchett- carefully studied the movement's strategy. Engaged in mass arrests but avoided public displays of violence/police brutality which would attract negative press. He avoided filling up jails by utilizing jails throughout the region. He arranged to have King's bail paid so to not allow King to be a magnet for unwanted attention.

Some viewed the limited success of the Albany Movement as coming at too high a price. Others disagreed. Nothing was immediate but change came eventually. Local activism continued long after national attention faded. Hearts and minds changed over time.  Also, important lessons were learned.

Schenck v. United States (1919) Notes


In reviewing the conviction of a man charged with distributing provocative flyers to draftees of World War I, the Court asserted that, in certain contexts, words can create a "clear and present danger" that Congress may constitutionally prohibit. While the ruling has since been overturned, Schenck is still significant for creating the context-based balancing tests used in reviewing freedom of speech challenges.

Charles Schenck, a socialist, was arrested for distributing flyers to enlisted men during World War I. Schenck's flyers asserted the draft was a form of involuntary servitude prohibited by the 13th Amendment. Schenck was charged with violating the recently enacted Espionage Act. The government asserted that Schenck attempted to conspire to cause insubordination.

Others convicted under this law:
Daniel Ellsberg
Chelsea Manning
Edward Snowden

 The Court then argued that "the character of every act depends upon the circumstances in which it is done." While in peacetime such flyers could be construed as harmless speech, in times of war they could be construed as acts of national insubordination. The Court famously analogized to a man who cries "Fire!" in a crowded theater. In a quiet park or home, such a cry would be protected by the First Amendment, but "the most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theatre and causing a panic." 

The "clear and present danger" test would only last for 50 years. In 1969, the Court in Brandenburg v. Ohio replaced it with the "imminent lawless action" test, one that protects a broader range of speech. This test states that the government may only limit speech that incites unlawful action sooner than the police can arrive to prevent that action. As of 2006, the "imminent lawless action" test is still used.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Room 167: First Amendment-Notes

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Room 167: Room 167: First Amendment-Notes

Room 167: Room 167: First Amendment-Notes: Room 167: First Amendment-Notes : First Amendment: Rights contained in the First Amendment Values served by protecting the First Amendment ...

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Room 167: Marbury v. Madison

Room 167: Marbury v. Madison: Marbury v. Madison Jeopardy People *( 100 )President who attempted to preserve his philosophical legacy through a number of political ap...

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Freedom Rides- Notes

Who: Irene Morgan, Supreme Court, NAACP, CORE, SCLC, SNCC, John Lewis, Diane Nash, Bull Connor, Fred Shuttlesworth, Ralph Abernathy, Governor John Patterson, John Kennedy, Robert Kennedy

What: Segregation on interstate buses in the south, Morgan v. Virginia, angry/violent resistance (Anniston- angry mob armed with clubs and bats, fire bombed the bus and brutally beat the passengers)

When: Morgan v. Virginia 1946, Journey of Reconciliation 1947, Freedom Rides May, 1961, Anniston, Alabama May 14, 1961

Where: throughout the south, in particular the deep south, Anniston, Birmingham, Montgomery Alabama

Why: Test the Constitutionality of segregation on interstate buses

How: Trained in civil disobedience, informally tested the law- Journey of Reconciliation and later Freedom Rides

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Monday, November 9, 2015