Read Should Cross Burnings be Protected as a Form of Free Speech?, and address the elements listed below.
a. Summarize the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in both of the cases that are excerpted in the handout. In a few words, explain why the court in R.A.V. v. City of St. Paul overturned the decision of the Minnesota Supreme Court. Explain why the court upheld the Virginia statute in Virginia v. Black.
b. In Virginia v. Black, what did the court mean when it held that “just as any state may regulate only that obscenity which is the most obscene due to its prurient content, so too may a state choose to prohibit only those forms of intimidation that are most likely to inspire fear of bodily harm”? 2. Read Does the Sending of Obscene Material Over the Internet Constitute the Transportation of Obscene Material in Interstate Commerce?, and address the questions below.
b. Should the government be required to present expert witnesses to establish that the material in question is obscene? Is this a question that a jury can decide on its own? How are jury members aware of “community standards”?
c. If the community standards are different in Milpitas, California, from those of Memphis, Tennessee, why should the defendants beheld accountable for the standards in Memphis and not those in the location where the material was transmitted?
d. Are you satisfied with the test for obscenity? In what manner, if any, would you change the standard?
The handouts are attached.
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