Should our democracy have the power to prohibit unauthorized public demonstrations?
When citizens disagree with their government, one of the most powerful ways to express that dissent is to demonstrate publicly with other citizens. Sometimes these demonstrations have not been stopped, and they have led directly to a change of government. At other times, governments have determined such demonstrations were a threat to public safety and suppressed them by police and military forces. Distinguishing between the rights of citizens to assemble and the responsibility of government to maintain safety is one of the most troublesome questions of free expression in any society. It is a particularly difficult question in a democracy, where government must listen and respond to the voices of its citizens.
- Eesti (Estonian)
- Македонски (Macedonian)
- Na Russkom Yizake (Russian)
- Romana (Romanian)
- Shqip (Albanian)
Articles and Papers
- Chicago v. Morales et al., 527 U.S. 41 (1999)
- Congressional Research Service, “First Amendment: Annotations,” in The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation (Washington, DC: Library of Congress, 1992; updated 2000 by FindLaw.com) see pp. 6, 7, 10, 12, 18, 20, and 21
- “European Convention on Human Rights: Article 11, Freedom of Assembly and Association” (Strasbourg: Council of Europe, 1950)
- “European Social Charter: Part II, Article 5, The Right to Organize” (Strasbourg, France: Council of Europe, 1961)
- Hague v. Committee for Industrial Organization, 307 U.S. 496 (1939)
- Medvedev, Dmitri, “We Really Do Need to Preserve This Vast State,” Expert Magazine vol. 13, no. 13 (April 4, 2005)
- Niemotko v. Maryland, 340 U.S. 268 (1951)
- “Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Article 20” (right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association; freedom from compelled association) (New York: United Nations, 1948)