Home > American Society > The First Amendment : Sometimes it hurts to win.

The First Amendment : Sometimes it hurts to win.


The First Amendment is the most important cornerstone in American Society. It is the foundation for our creativity and the basis of our freedoms. Over the past few decades many people have pushed the boundaries of what “has to be accepted” under the First Amendment.

One of the most famous expansions of the tested rights of the First Amendment was the time that Larry Flynt, owner of Hustler Magazine was imprisoned for spreading elicit sex stories and pictures, and for putting cartoons of political figures in compromising sexual positions to show his personal feelings against their beliefs.

Mr. Flynt pushed his case all the way the Supreme Court which upheld his rights. Most of the country disagreed with the Court on their decision but still enjoy the freedoms under the First Amendment to this day due to their correct decision. It was a win for America even though it hurt many Americans emotionally.

Moving forward to today, the shoe is on the other foot. The poster children for the same conservatives that were hurt by the decision to protect Larry Flynt are now the beneficiaries of a ruling by the Supreme Court to once again uphold the First Amendment right to “Freedom of ideas”. The Westboro Baptist Church is spreading their religion of hate. They are taunting the funerals of dead American soldiers saying how their god is killing the soldiers because America accepts gay people into its society.

Unlike Mr. Flynt, who’s sole intention was to promote sexuality and freedom, the Crazies at the Westboro Baptist Church want to restrict freedoms and they promote hatred of another group in their society. In essence they are no different than the KKK of old, but they too are equally protected under the First Amendment to the freedom of expressing their ideas.

Even though 48 of the 50 states urged the Supreme Court to find the crazies at the Westboro Baptist Church liable for their actions, the Supreme Court did not budge on the idea behind the First Amendment. To this I say, “Thanks!”. I would like nothing more than to put all the people in the Westboro Baptist Church in prison, as well as any American who actively campaigns for the injury of another group in our society, but if we did imprison them we will trade our freedom for that pleasure.

There is not much that is left of America that we can call “Great”. The First Amendment is one of the few remaining gems of our society. I am glad the Supreme Court upheld it today. Sometimes it hurts to win.

Itia (Abroad)

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