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English 126: Essay #1 Paper Topics: Free Speech Analysis (15%)Two draft versions of an introduction for essay 1 are due on Thurs. 2/14. The full draft of essay #1 is due on Mon. 2/25. Submit your draft, and once you’ve submitted it, you will be randomly assigned two classmates’ drafts to peer review on that same folder. The final essay is due on Thurs. 3/7. This paper should be 5 pages long (not including Works Cited). Please type the essay in 12 point font, double spaced, with 1” margins all around. •Limit the scope of you paper. You need to make sure you have a thesis statement, which is a central argument in your introductory paragraph which you support throughout the essay, and which you revisit in your conclusion. •Close analysis of specific passages from the class reading are important. Use MLA format for documenting sources (see handout). Include a Works Cited page at the end of your essay, including the essay you analyze and any other sources you make use of (sources not required).•The purpose of this paper is to analyze the issue of free speech by demonstrating that you have carefully read and understood in depth the readings we have done in class. Outside information is not required; you may bring in current events, but all sources need to be well-documented, and outside sources should only be supplemental to the focus on materials I have assigned for class. Part of your grade for each essay includes the writing process: turning in drafts, revising, and workshopping according to course deadlines. Keep all of your drafts and comments from other students together in a folder to turn in with your final essay.•Note that Canvas has a plagiarism-checking software, so be careful not to copy sentences from elsewhere without giving credit and quotations. Questions taken from Elements of Argument page 597 (“Are Limits on Free Speech Ever Justified?” handout). Also take note of the online resources provided in the book for further research (“Are Limits on Free Speech” 598).Please choose one the following choices for your paper topic. A significant part of how well you carry out an assignment relates to following instructions, so carefully read this handout and specifically, the topic you choose. Ask me if you are planning to bring in supplemental information; however, outside research does not take the place of the focused analysis I would like to see of readings we have done in class. Choice 1: What are the limits of free speech? In “Bethel School District No. 403 v. Fraser” (583-586), the US Supreme Court ruled that children in a public school do not have the same rights as adults to use sexual speech in a public forum. What reasons did the Court give for making a distinction? What reason did Justice Marshall give for his dissent? The case was argued in 1986. Do you think the case would be treated in the same way today? (583) Consider how key terms, such as “offensive” and “disruptive,” were debated over and defined in the court opinions. You may also want to draw upon the handout readings on free speech to see how free speech has been defined in various contexts. Also note the web resources (598). Please pay close attention to and quote from 2“Bethel School District” and other relevant texts. Choice 2: In “Student Sues School District” (582-) and “Bethel School District” (583-), we see public school to be a flash point for free speech controversies. Do you find the cases discussed in “Bethel School District No. 403 v. Fraser” and in “Student Sues District for Banning Anti-War T-Shirt” to be similar, or are there significant differences between the two cases? Explain. (582-583). Consider how key terms, such as “offensive,” “disruptive,” and “political speech” were debated over and defined. You may also want to draw upon the handout readings on free speech to see how free speech has been defined in various contexts. Also note the web resources. Please pay close attention to and quote from “Bethel School District,” “Student Sues School District,” and other relevant texts. Choice 3: In “Student Sues School District” (582-), how do you feel the court should decide in the case of the student who wore the anti-war T-shirt? (582) Consider how key terms, such as “disruption” and “political speech” were debated over and defined. You may also want to draw upon the handout readings on free speech to see how free speech has been defined in various contexts. Note the web resources (598). Please pay close attention to and quote from “Student Sues School District,” and other relevant texts. Choice 4: In “Ice-T: The Issue is Creative Freedom” (586-), Barbara Ehrenreich argues that “Cop Killer” is not seditious and creative freedom should be protected. Are there circumstances where creative freedom should bow to social responsibility? What evidence does Ehrenreich use to prove that “Cop Killer” is not dangerous? Is it convincing? (586) Consider how key terms, such as “sedition” and “creative freedom” are debated over and defined. You may also want to draw upon the handout readings on free speech to see how free speech has been defined in various contexts. Note the web resources (598). Please pay close attention to and quote from “Ice-T” and other relevant texts.Choice 5: In “Why We Need to Abolish the FCC” (589-), Robert Garmong criticizes the FCC as violating free speech. Explain your position on how much control there should be on what is broadcast over the airwaves, and who should control it (589). Consider how key terms, such as “free speech,” “offensive,” and “indecency” are debated over and defined. You may also want to draw upon the handout readings on free speech to see how free speech has been defined in various contexts. Note the web resources (“Are Limits on Free Speech” 598). Please pay close attention to and quote from “Why We Need to Abolish” and other relevant texts.Choice 6: While we may not see the do-not-call registry as controversial, in “Freedom of Speech and My Right to Silence at Bath Time,” Patti Waldmeir explains that there are two sides to the controversy. Write an essay in which you take a position, although this is not a clear-cut case of one group being right and the other wrong (591-). Consider how key terms, such as “privacy,” “free speech,” and “commercial speech” are debated over and defined. You may also want to draw upon the handout readings on free speech to see how free speech has been defined in various contexts. Note the web resources (“Are Limits on Free Speech” 598). Please pay close attention to and quote from “Freedom of Speech and My Right to Silence” and other relevant texts.3Choice 7: In “Under Attack” (handout), the editors of The Economist look at how free speech is being threatened by repressive governments, non-state actors, and a general idea that people have a right not to be offended. Do you think there are times it is right to censor speech to maintain order or to protect peoples’ feelings? Do you agree with the editors’ underlying premise that the protection of free speech is vital for a liberal democracy? Consider how key terms, such as “offence,” “hate speech,” and “incitement to violence” are defined. Please take a position in your essay and pay close attention to and quote from “Under Attack” and other relevant texts.Choice 8: In “A Case the Scouts Had to Win” (596-), what distinction does Johnson make between the right to a job or an education and the right to associate with particular people? Explain why Johnson believes that the Scouts are protected by the First Amendment (596). Consider how key terms, such as “free association” and “discrimination” are debated over and defined. You may also want to draw upon the handout readings on free speech to see how free speech has been defined in various contexts. Note the web resources (598). Please pay close attention to and quote “A Case the Scouts Had to Win” and other relevant texts.Choice 9: “Is Hate Speech Free Speech?” (handout from Texts and Contexts, 372-389)Write an essay in which you discuss the issue of free speech versus hate speech on college campuses. You may come to the conclusion that some form of censorship (you should specify the form it should take) or some form of punishment should be instituted to prevent the abuses of hate speech, or, conversely, you may wish to argue that we will have to accept abuses of free speech in order to protect free speech. You also have the option of shedding light on the issue rather than taking one position or another. Consider how key terms, such as “free speech,” “hate speech,” “offensive,” “fighting words,” “protected vs. unprotected speech,” “obscene speech,” and “harassment” are debated over and defined. Include a specific thesis in your introduction that argues or explains your main point, and focus your analysis on quotes and evidence from the handout, pages 372-389, focusing on one or two of the articles assigned for class in the packet, “Is Hate Speech Free Speech.” Note that there is a particular definition for hate speech, so that wearing a political t-shirt or making an obscene speech wouldn’t be considered hate speech. Choice 10: In “The Free Speech–Hate Speech Trade Off,” Professor Chemerinsky addresses the issue of hate speech as free speech on college campuses in light of recent incidents with controversial speakers. When should the freedom to say offensive things be protected, and when should it be limited? Consider key terms, such as “harm,” “offend,” “free speech,” and “hate speech.” You may need to do some additional research to find out more. Please take a position in your paper and pay close attention to and quote “The Free Speech–Hate Speech Trade Off” and other relevant texts.Choice 11: In “Free Speech in the Age of YouTube,” Somini Sengupta looks at how free speech policies are made by internet companies. What do you think their policies should be in banning certain content? Consider how key terms, such as “hate speech,” “inciting violent acts,” “free expression,” and “public safety” are debated and defined. Please take a position in your paper and pay close attention to and quote from “Free Speech in the Age 4of YouTube” and other relevant texts.For your information: More Free Speech Cases•Schools may set codes to punish expressions of racism, sexism, homophobia, and other kinds of bias, but courts may ask them to modify these speech codes so as not to violate the First Amendment right to free speech. • Is the truth offensive to some groups? What should the attitude of the university be, as an institution based on the search for truth? • To what extent should feelings and arguments that could be offensive be allowed in academic discussion? (Rottenberg and Winchell, “Resources for Teaching” 65)• The University of Massachusetts created a speech code that ensured “freedom from harassment based on race, color, national, or ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, age religion, marital status, military service status, and disability” (Rottenberg and Winchell 66). The Graduate Student Employees Organization wanted to extend this definition to include “citizenship, culture, HIV status, language, parental status, political affiliation or belief, and pregnancy status,” but the faculty thought this went too far in terms of impeding discussion of social issues in the classroom (Rottenberg and Winchell 66).•Freedom of speech may be treated differently on campus than on the street. The President of Emory University stated that hate speech should not be allowed on campus because these are places that foster “the habits and manners of civil society” (66). In contrast, New York State’s highest court ruled that on the street, abusive language is protected under free speech, in relation to an incident where a retarded woman was called names by her neighbor (66). •Teenagers in Miami went to jail for distributing a pamphlet that contained racist comments, obscene cartoons, and a veiled threat against the principal. Their defense claimed it was a satire, but the superintendent of the school states, “free speech doesn’t give anyone the right to use a word that would inflame” (66). The US Supreme Court has upheld students’ right to expression but also allowed schools to censor school newspapers and discipline students making suggestive comments (66).• Should offensive ideas, such as the denial of the Holocaust, be allowed to be taught in schools? 5• In Pennsylvania, a court ruled against a school’s antiharassment policy that prohibited “jokes, name-calling, graffiti, innuendo, making fun of a students’ clothing, social skills or surname” (66).• Is labeling albums that contain offensive lyrics a violation of free speech rights?• Was it censorship for radio executives to ask their program directors not to broadcast certain songs after 9/11 like “When You’re Falling” by Peter Gabriel which could be taken the wrong way? (67)•In 1996 Congress passed the Communications Decency Act which outlawed “distribution of indecent material to minors on the Internet” (67). But in 1999 the Supreme Court ruled this Act unconstitutional. John McCain sponsored a bill to require that schools and libraries that receive federal funding for the internet must install antipornography filters. •To what extent should schools be allowed to control school newspapers on the web. What if they incite violence? •Terrorists put up propaganda and plan attacks on the web. Should they be controlled and censored, or does this violate their rights? Sources: Coles, Robert. “Safety Lessons for the Internet.” New York Times 11 Oct 1997: A23. This articles asks for protection for children from pornography on the Internet.Hanna, Judith Lynne, “Wrapping Nudity in a Cloak of Law.” New York Times 29 July 2001: E14.Hentoff, Nat. Living the Bill of Rights. New York: HarperCollins, 1998.Rottenberg, Annette and Donna Winchell. Resources for Teaching Elements of Argument. Boston: Bedford, 2006. Tribe, Laurence H. “The Internet vs. The First Amendment.” New York Times 28 April 1999: A27. This article argues that surveilling the internet is unlikely to prevent violent crimes like the school massacre in Littleton Colorado.

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