Freedom of Speech and the Marketplace of Ideas
It’s one of our most fundamental rights as Americans, guaranteed in the First Amendment and held dear by both the most ardent liberals and the staunchest conservatives. But many today see freedom of speech as under attack in America. From college campuses to the wilds of social media to our football fields, battles over the right to express ourselves, and how we may or may not do so, are reaching a fever pitch. What role are racial tensions, political polarization, and so-called “identity politics” playing? How should this basic right apply to the bots, trolls, and algorithms that today are significant vehicles for public expression? Are lies and “fake news” protected speech? Does the First Amendment’s speech clause need a 21st-Century upgrade?