Disturbed by the number and variety of signs that individuals were putting up within its borders, a City passed an ordinance prohibiting all signs on private property except in commercial areas for advertising. Sam, a homeowner, pasted a sign on the front door of his house containing an American flag with these words underneath the flag: Down with the Mayor and the City Council Our rights are being violated. He then went door to door in his neighborhood passing out copies of this sign and asking his neighbors to display it as well. Sam was arrested for violating the ordinance.
During the trial, a witness for the City described how many signs had appeared in the past on homes and on lawns for commercial home businesses, ruining the appearance of the community. He explained that many other cities and towns had experienced the same problems and that the ordinance was reasonable and the only way to solve the problem. The restriction, he said, was content neutral as it was addressing a societal problem. Sam testified that the sign he had put up was a small one and that other City residents had raised flags on national holidays and put up signs showing their patriotism. None of these residents had been arrested.
The Arguments at Trial
The Citys attorney argued that a city had the authority to regulate signs within its borders to protect the appearance and value of properties. She further argued that the ordinance did not unduly restrict free speech as there were other ways for residents to express their views: radio, television, and the newspapers. Sams attorney argued that the regulation violated the freedom of speech provisions of the federal constitution, was too broad, too vague, and was unreasonable. He argued that the City could have limited the ordinance by restricting signs over a certain size and in certain locations. He further argued that it was unreasonable to restrict the expression of opinions except for the use of the media.
Discussion Questions to be Answered
Who has the stronger arguments, the City or Sam? Why?
What are the laws here that are being applied and is their application proper?
If you were the on the jury hearing this case, for whom would you decide? Why?
Delivering a high-quality product at a reasonable price is not enough anymore.
That’s why we have developed 5 beneficial guarantees that will make your experience with our service enjoyable, easy, and safe.
You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.Read more
Each paper is composed from scratch, according to your instructions. It is then checked by our plagiarism-detection software. There is no gap where plagiarism could squeeze in.Read more
Thanks to our free revisions, there is no way for you to be unsatisfied. We will work on your paper until you are completely happy with the result.Read more
Your email is safe, as we store it according to international data protection rules. Your bank details are secure, as we use only reliable payment systems.Read more
By sending us your money, you buy the service we provide. Check out our terms and conditions if you prefer business talks to be laid out in official language.Read more