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A Virginia sheriff's deputy has been fired for liking his boss's political opponent -- on Facebook.

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Justices deny review over students' religious messages in classroomupdated: Mon Jun 11 2012 15:41:00

In what have become known as the "Jesus pencil" and "candy cane" cases, the Supreme Court refused Monday to consider appeals from the families of elementary school students over distribution of religious-themed gifts on campus.

Religious liberty at stake in battle over contraception ruleupdated: Fri May 25 2012 18:15:00

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." This is the first line of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Catholic Universities sue Obama adminupdated: Fri May 25 2012 18:15:00

Professor Carter Snead and Catholics United member Samantha Groark discuss the lawsuits filed against the Obama admin.

Muslim group files lawsuit against fedsupdated: Fri Apr 13 2012 18:23:00

A Muslim civil liberties group filed a lawsuit Friday against the federal government for allegedly violating the First Amendment rights of Michigan Muslims and violating a 1993 federal law that upholds the free practice of religion.

Democrats slam GOP on contraceptionupdated: Thu Feb 23 2012 19:54:00

Democrats hold a contraception hearing in stark contrast to a GOP effort that included no women. CNN's Dana Bash reports.

Seven states sue government over contraceptives mandateupdated: Thu Feb 23 2012 19:54:00

Seven states on Thursday filed a lawsuit against the federal government requirement that religious employers offer health insurance coverage that includes contraceptives and other birth control services.

Obama's contraceptive compromiseupdated: Mon Feb 13 2012 12:05:00

President Obama outlines the compromise reached with religious groups over the debate on contraceptives.

Catholic bishops group denounces contraception compromiseupdated: Mon Feb 13 2012 12:05:00

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops denounced President Barack Obama's compromise over whether to require religiously affiliated institutions to provide contraception to female employees, saying the proposal raises "serious moral concerns," according to a statement posted on its website late Friday.

Catholic bishops group denounces contraception compromise, says 'raises serious moral concern'updated: Sat Feb 11 2012 08:32:00

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops denounced President Barack Obama's compromise over whether to require religiously affiliated institutions to provide contraception to female employees, saying the proposal raises "serious moral concerns," according to a statement posted on its website late Friday.

Teen: Tweet to friends, not governorupdated: Mon Nov 28 2011 16:59:00

Emma Sullivan talks to CNN's Brooke Baldwin about her tweet for which Kansas Gov. Brownback's office demanded an apology.

Kansas governor apologizes for 'overreaction' to teen's disparaging tweetupdated: Mon Nov 28 2011 16:59:00

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback apologized Monday for what he called his staff's "overreaction" to a disparaging tweet directed at him by a high school senior during a state Capitol visit.

When wearing a U.S. flag T-shirt is wrongupdated: Fri Nov 18 2011 11:16:00

When is wearing a T-shirt with the American flag on it considered provocative?

Arizona church is house of prostitution, police sayupdated: Sat Sep 10 2011 08:03:00

A church called the Phoenix Goddess Temple has been accused of being a house of prostitution, and a six-month undercover investigation has resulted in the arrests of 20 women and men who worked there, Phoenix police said Friday.

Judge: Indiana teens' racy social media photos are protected speechupdated: Wed Aug 24 2011 09:47:00

An Indiana school district might appeal a summary judgment that said it violated two students' First Amendment rights by punishing them for posting racy photos to social networking sites, the district's lawyer said.

Jeffs objects frequently as sexual assault trial continuesupdated: Tue Aug 02 2011 16:54:00

Polygamous sect leader Warren Jeffs frequently objected to witness testimony as he faced sexual assault charges during his trial Tuesday in Texas.

Warren Jeffs asks to represent himselfupdated: Sat Jul 30 2011 04:48:00

Warren Jeffs requests legal assistance so he can properly format his "writing" as he represents himself.

Sect leader warns of 'death' to 'those who prosecute the church'updated: Sat Jul 30 2011 04:48:00

A Texas judge warned Warren Jeffs against calling "for the jury's destruction" shortly after the polygamous sect leader said Friday during his sexual assault trial that those who prosecuted his church would face "sickness and death."

San Francisco's anti-circumcision initiative faces court challengeupdated: Thu Jun 23 2011 12:45:00

The Anti-Defamation League and a number of individuals have filed a lawsuit challenging a San Francisco ballot initiative that would criminalize the circumcision of males under age 18.

Circumcision: Who makes the call to cut?updated: Wed Jun 15 2011 09:48:00

CNN's LZ Granderson looks at a ballot initative in San Francisco that would ban circumcision on boys younger than 18.

Ban circumcision? Why not ear piercing?updated: Wed Jun 15 2011 09:48:00

A San Francisco-based advocacy group known as Male Genital Mutilation Bill has collected enough signatures on its petition to ban circumcision that the proposal will appear on the city's November electoral ballot.

Larry Flynt defends free speechupdated: Wed Apr 20 2011 13:09:00

Hustler's Larry Flynt tells CNN's Piers Morgan why he thinks there shouldn't be any limitations on the First Amendment.

Funeral protest ruling painful but rightupdated: Thu Mar 03 2011 07:49:00

The Supreme Court ruled that a Kansas church whose members travel the country to protest at military funerals, holding signs that say "Thank God for dead soldiers" and "God blew up the troops," has a right to continue such demonstrations.

Family member: Supreme Court has no senseupdated: Thu Mar 03 2011 07:49:00

Families are disappointed in a Supreme Court ruling that allows a church to picket military funerals.

High court to hear case over 'data mining' of drug prescription dataupdated: Fri Jan 07 2011 16:26:00

The Supreme Court has agreed to decide whether states can bar "data mining" companies from marketing information about doctors' drug prescriptions, an important case testing the conflicting boundaries over commercial speech and consumer protection.

Toobin: First Amendment may not protect WikiLeaksupdated: Thu Dec 02 2010 07:02:00

Since this summer, WikiLeaks has published huge tranches of classified U.S. intelligence. The online organization's actions have ignited fierce debate over whether the First Amendment's free speech rights will keep its members and its founder, Julian Assange, safe from prosecution.

Judge extends ban on Oklahoma's anti-Islamic law referendumupdated: Tue Nov 23 2010 10:39:00

A federal judge has extended a temporary restraining order against an Oklahoma referendum that would ban the use of Islamic religious law in state courts.

Sharia law on ballot in Oklahomaupdated: Tue Nov 23 2010 10:39:00

In October, CNN reported on Oklahoma voters deciding on a proposal banning the practice of Sharia law in state courts.

2009: What is Sharia law?updated: Mon Nov 22 2010 06:21:00

In 2009, CNN's Octavia Nasr explained the origins of Sharia law and what it meant to the Muslim world.

Arguments to take place in Oklahoma over ban on Islamic law in courtsupdated: Mon Nov 22 2010 06:21:00

A federal judge will hear arguments Monday on a temporary restraining order against an Oklahoma referendum that would ban the use of Islamic religious law in state courts.

Amazon pulls book on pedophiliaupdated: Fri Nov 12 2010 05:28:00

CNN's Anderson Cooper takes a look at the controversy surrounding and books defending pedophilia.

'Pedophile's Guide' pulled from Amazon.comupdated: Fri Nov 12 2010 05:28:00

"The Pedophile's Guide to Love and Pleasure: A Child-Lover's Code of Conduct" was pulled from, a spokesman confirmed Thursday, after thousands of users posted angry comments and threats to boycott the site.

Facebook, freedom and thin-skinned bossesupdated: Thu Nov 11 2010 09:34:00

The recent news item about a Connecticut worker fired for Facebook postings that annoyed her employer, like other accounts of employees sacked for private speech, was bound to draw a lot of attention. Americans hold First Amendment rights to free speech as a kind of sacrosanct birthright, and for many of us the idea that you can lose your job for expressing private thoughts away from work offends the core principle of freedom of expression.

Fired for Facebook?updated: Thu Nov 11 2010 09:34:00

Companies and employees navigate the ethical and legal framework of talking about work on social networking sites.

Interview with gay student's lawyerupdated: Tue Nov 09 2010 12:18:00

The lawyer for the gay student in the Michigan assistant attorney general controversy talks about the case.

Michigan assistant AG fired after targeting openly gay student leaderupdated: Tue Nov 09 2010 12:18:00

An assistant attorney general in Michigan is out of a job, fired after targeting an openly gay University of Michigan student leader online and in person -- then lying about his actions to investigators -- state Attorney General Mike Cox said Monday.

Judge blocks Oklahoma's ban on Islamic lawupdated: Mon Nov 08 2010 17:30:00

A federal judge Monday blocked an amendment to Oklahoma's state constitution that would bar the use of Islamic religious law in state courts after American Muslims challenged the proposal in court.

Reaction to Quran burning plan pours in from around the worldupdated: Fri Sep 10 2010 14:33:00

Governments, world leaders and others were responding Friday to a Florida pastor's plan to burn copies of the Quran, the Muslim holy book, even amid confusion over whether it would go ahead. The Rev. Terry Jones, the head of a small church in Gainesville, called off the burning Thursday but later said he would "rethink" his position after a meeting with a local imam. Here's a sampling of global reaction:

'You will not see a bonfire of Qurans'updated: Fri Sep 10 2010 14:33:00

The Council on American-Islamic Relations announces the "Learn Don't Burn" initiative to promote unity and understanding.

Free speech helped avert Quran burningupdated: Fri Sep 10 2010 12:08:00

The Rev. Terry Jones, the leader of a small congregation in Florida, recently announced he would burn copies of the Quran on September 11. A broad spectrum of figures in public life, including President Barack Obama and Gen. David Petraeus, urged him not to.

Confusion over Quran burning plansupdated: Fri Sep 10 2010 12:08:00

Rev. Terry Jones cancels a planned Quran burning, then says he'll "rethink" his position. CNN's John Zarrella reports.

Vatican: Quran burning 'outrageous'updated: Thu Sep 09 2010 10:34:00

Burning the Quran would be an "outrageous and grave gesture," the Vatican said Wednesday, joining a chorus of voices pleading with a small Florida church not to burn Islam's holy book on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001, attacks.

Imam: We are proceeding with NYC Islamic centerupdated: Wed Sep 08 2010 08:45:00

The imam at the center of an ugly controversy over an Islamic center near New York's ground zero broke his silence Tuesday, just hours after a broad coalition of Christian, Jewish and Islamic leaders denounced what they described as a rising tide of anti-Muslim bigotry across the United States.

Appeals court rules Stolen Valor Act unconstitutionalupdated: Wed Aug 18 2010 13:13:00

Lying about military honors is not a crime, a federal appeals court has ruled, tossing out the prosecution of a California public official who falsely claimed to have won the prestigious Medal of Honor.

Obama courageous, then craven on mosqueupdated: Tue Aug 17 2010 11:06:00

At a White House dinner last week -- an iftar on the occasion of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan --President Obama delivered what many rightly considered a courageous speech in which he weighed in on the controversy surrounding the proposed construction of a mosque near ground zero.

Should Obama have weighed in on mosque?updated: Tue Aug 17 2010 11:06:00

Was it a political mistake for President Obama to have taken sides on the NYC mosque debate?

GOP seeks political gain from ground zero Islamic center issueupdated: Mon Aug 16 2010 22:28:00

By wading into the issue of an Islamic center and mosque near ground zero, President Barack Obama provided Republicans with an emotion-ridden attack vehicle while diverting attention from campaign themes of fellow Democrats.

Net neutrality is foremost free speech issue of our timeupdated: Thu Aug 05 2010 08:58:00

If we learned that the government was planning to limit our First Amendment rights, we'd be outraged. After all, our right to be heard is fundamental to our democracy.

Gay sensitivity training or no degreeupdated: Wed Jul 28 2010 17:55:00

A grad student at Augusta State University says she was told to take gay sensitivity training or not receive a diploma.

Disobedient brats no martyrs for freedomupdated: Sat May 22 2010 12:00:00

When five students at Live Oak High School in Morgan Hill, California, taunted Latino students by wearing T-shirts bearing the American flag on Cinco de Mayo, even though administrators had told students beforehand not to wear flag clothing that day, they caused a ruckus, divided a community and reignited the culture wars.

High court rules cross doesn't violate separation of church and stateupdated: Tue May 11 2010 15:23:00

The Supreme Court narrowly ruled Wednesday that a white cross, erected as a war memorial and sitting on national parkland in the Mojave Desert, does not violate the constitutional separation of church and state.

Campaign finance proposal targets corporationsupdated: Thu Apr 29 2010 18:49:00

Congressional Democrats unveiled legislation Thursday that would ban foreign-controlled companies and most firms receiving either government contracts or federal bailout funds from spending money on U.S. elections.

Facebook gripes protected by free speech, ruling saysupdated: Wed Mar 03 2010 17:01:00

A former Florida high school student who was suspended by her principal after she set up a Facebook page to criticize her teacher is protected constitutionally under the First Amendment, a federal magistrate ruled.

Congress hears testimony on using Internet to quash human rightsupdated: Tue Mar 02 2010 16:48:00

"If it were not for the Internet, God knows how many more people would have been killed on the streets of Tehran" after the 2009 Iranian elections, an Iranian blogger told a Senate subcommittee on Tuesday.

High court hears 'Hillary: The Movie!' campaign finance caseupdated: Wed Sep 09 2009 13:24:00

The Supreme Court heard new arguments Wednesday in a dramatic case that started with a movie attacking Hillary Clinton -- but that could have far-reaching implications for U.S. elections. Outgoing ACLU President Nadine Strossenupdated: Tue Oct 28 2008 20:00:00

The former ACLU president talks to TIME about her toughest sparring partners, the tension between national security and civil liberties and why the upcoming election is even more important than people may realize.

What not to wear to the polls on Election Dayupdated: Fri Oct 24 2008 18:01:00

Campaign paraphernalia is everywhere nowadays. People are sporting T-shirts, hats and pins touting their candidate of choice. But wearing your political allegiances can cause a problem at the polls.

Atheist soldier sues Army for 'unconstitutional' discriminationupdated: Mon Aug 04 2008 08:17:00

Army Spc. Jeremy Hall was raised Baptist.

Atheist soldier files lawsuitupdated: Mon Aug 04 2008 08:17:00

A U.S. soldier claims he almost lost his life in Iraq because he didn't believe in God. CNN's Randi Kaye reports.

Marine's father awarded $10.9Mupdated: Wed Oct 31 2007 22:00:00

A fallen Marine's father sues an anti-gay protest group, and wins.

Church ordered to pay $10.9 million for funeral protestupdated: Wed Oct 31 2007 22:00:00

A federal jury in Baltimore, Maryland, Wednesday awarded $10.9 million to a father of a Marine whose funeral was picketed by members of a fundamentalist church carrying signs blaming soldiers' deaths on America's tolerance of homosexuals.

Emotion runs high in debate over ousting student editorupdated: Thu Sep 27 2007 16:45:00

Hundreds of students turned out at Colorado State University to speak their minds on whether the student newspaper's editor should lose his job over four words.

Tase this!updated: Thu Sep 27 2007 16:45:00

An obscenity next to President Bush's name in a student newspaper causes a stir in Colorado. Affiliate KMGH reports.

Student Taseredupdated: Thu Sep 20 2007 21:17:00

CNN Student News' Carl Azuz explores the events leading up to the use of a stun gun on a Florida college student.

Your opinion: Reaction to police using Taser on studentupdated: Thu Sep 20 2007 21:17:00

Two University of Florida police officers were placed on leave Tuesday after using an electronic stun gun to subdue a student at a campus forum. Read an account of the incident from a student who was there. Putting the Term "Rape" on Trialupdated: Wed Jul 25 2007 18:00:00

A judge bans the word from a sexual assault case, sparking debate over freedom of speech and the right to a fair trial

'Bong Hits 4 Jesus' case limits student rightsupdated: Mon Jun 25 2007 10:24:00

The Supreme Court ruled against a former high school student Monday in the "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" banner case -- a split decision that limits students' free speech rights.

Vietnam in historical Vatican meetupdated: Thu Jan 25 2007 22:42:00

Communist Vietnam's prime minister became his country's highest-ranking official to meet a pope on Thursday, an encounter the Vatican called an "important step" towards normalizing diplomatic ties.

Saudi Arabia promises to revise textbooksupdated: Thu Jul 20 2006 09:50:00

Saudi Arabia has promised a comprehensive review of all of its educational textbooks and to remove all language promoting intolerance, the State Department's ambassador for religious freedom said Wednesday.

Your e-mails: Banning flag-burningupdated: Wed Jun 28 2006 19:34:00

A proposed constitutional amendment to give Congress the power to ban desecration of the American flag failed to clear the Senate by one vote this week.

U.S. finds religious freedom threatened worldwideupdated: Wed May 03 2006 11:05:00

A U.S. government report warned on Wednesday that threats to religious freedom in Iraq and Afghanistan are mounting, and included Washington allies Saudi Arabia and Pakistan among countries "of particular concern" for religious intolerance.

Bush: 'May God bless the Christians of China'updated: Sat Nov 19 2005 21:32:00

President Bush attended a legally sanctioned church Sunday in Beijing before scheduled talks on religious freedom with President Hu Jintao and Premier Wen Jiabao.

U.S. drops China rights censureupdated: Thu Mar 17 2005 17:14:00

Citing "important and significant steps" by China to improve its human rights record, the State Department has said it will not introduce a resolution condemning Beijing this year at the U.N. Human Rights Commission.

The Texas State Capitol's Ten Commandments at the Supreme Courtupdated: Thu Mar 10 2005 10:58:00

Last week, the Supreme Court heard oral argument on two Ten Commandments cases.

Then & Now: Joseph Wilsonupdated: Mon Mar 07 2005 05:52:00

In 1991, the acting U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Joe Wilson, sheltered 800 Americans at the embassy in Baghdad during Saddam Hussein's invasion of Kuwait. Twelve years later, Wilson was thrust back onto the international stage when he accused President Bush of misleading the American people into another war with Iraq.

CNNMoney: Have a blog, lose your job?updated: Mon Feb 14 2005 09:55:00

Mark Jen landed a dream job with Google Inc. in January. He was fired less than a month later.

Bush: 'Stakes are clear' in Iraqi electionsupdated: Wed Dec 29 2004 12:16:00

President Bush said Wednesday a recent audiotaped message believed to be from al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden highlights what is at stake in the upcoming Iraqi elections.

Parents sue to allow religious holiday messages in public schoolsupdated: Mon Dec 27 2004 12:54:00

Thanks to a last-minute court ruling, Jonathan Morgan was able to share the religious origin of the candy cane with his elementary-school classmates at this year's winter-break party at Thomas Elementary School in Plano, Texas.

Public servants and the First Amendmentupdated: Fri Dec 17 2004 12:59:00

On December 6, the Supreme Court decided San Diego v. John Roe. The case posed the question of how far the First Amendment's free speech protection reaches to protect a police officer in a uniform. The lawsuit was brought by a police officer who was fired for making pornographic videos of himself in apparently official garb, and distributing them for sale on the web (along with other items).

Court halts penalty for barring recruitersupdated: Mon Nov 29 2004 21:27:00

A federal appeals court barred the government Monday from blocking funds to colleges and universities that deny access to military recruiters because of the Pentagon's policy banning openly gay men and women.

The Supreme Court without Rehnquistupdated: Thu Nov 04 2004 10:40:00

Recently, the Supreme Court made a saddening announcement: Chief Justice William Rehnquist is battling thyroid cancer. The news came as a surprise in the midst of an intense presidential campaign.

Lunacy of Pledge Protection Actupdated: Thu Sep 23 2004 12:40:00

The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday approved the Pledge Protection Act.

Indonesia journalists facing jailupdated: Wed Sep 01 2004 09:40:00

Three Indonesian journalists face imprisonment for writing and publishing an article that allegedly defamed a leading businessman.

The constitutionality of police-imposed 'free-speech zones'updated: Wed Aug 04 2004 10:24:00

Last week, the Democratic National Convention (DNC) ended. But the First Amendment issues that were raised there did not. Indeed, they are likely to continue on indefinitely -- recurring at the upcoming Republican National Convention (RNC), and similar public events raising intense security concerns.

Convention protesters demand more visible spaceupdated: Sat Jul 24 2004 08:45:00

Protesters at the Democratic National Convention say their designated area outside the FleetCenter infringes on their safety and free speech rights.

High court bars Internet porn law enforcementupdated: Tue Jun 29 2004 11:55:00

The Supreme Court on Tuesday blocked enforcement of a law intended to protect children from pornography on the Internet, saying the law probably violates free-speech guarantees.

Federalism issues from the Pledge of Allegiance caseupdated: Fri Jun 18 2004 15:18:00

Recently, the Supreme Court handed down its opinion in Elk Grove Unified School District v. Newdow -- better known as the "Pledge of Allegiance" case.

Court dismisses Pledge caseupdated: Mon Jun 14 2004 10:24:00

The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that a California father could not challenge the Pledge of Allegiance, a decision that sidestepped the broader question of the separation of church and state.

Girl's head scarf fuels debate on religious freedomupdated: Thu Apr 01 2004 10:29:00

(CNN) -- The U.S. Justice Department this week backed a Muslim girl's legal battle against an Oklahoma school district over the right to wear a head scarf in a public school.

The Supreme Court's Pledge of Allegiance caseupdated: Fri Mar 26 2004 13:57:00

(FindLaw) -- The week the Supreme Court heard oral argument in the Pledge of Allegiance case, Elk Grove Independent School District v. Newdow.

Supreme Court issues monumental free exercise rulingupdated: Fri Feb 27 2004 11:43:00

On Wednesday, February 25, the Supreme Court handed down its decision in Locke v. Davey -- a monumentally important ruling.

Justice not so clear-cut over laws directed at Klanupdated: Fri Jan 23 2004 11:29:00

Is wearing a masked hood at a public rally the same as shouting "Fire!" inside a crowded theater -- or is it closer in significance to burning an American flag?

Supreme Court rejects appeal over secret 9/11 detentionsupdated: Mon Jan 12 2004 10:29:00

The Supreme Court Monday allowed the government to keep secret information about hundreds of people rounded up under suspicion of terrorism in the months following the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Holiday decorations, religion clauses and the Supreme Courtupdated: Thu Jan 01 2004 16:11:00

Recently, various incidents involving holiday decorations have shown that the public's -- and even government officials' -- understanding of the legal rules in this area is far from clear. That is disappointing, for the relevant Supreme Court cases were decided more than a decade ago.

FSB: How To Get Cash & Influence People The small-business lobby takes the "pain" out of "campaign-finance reform."updated: Wed May 01 2002 00:01:00

To hear the hype about the new campaign-finance law, you'd think that advocates for small business would be miserable. With big money banished from politics, interest groups will have to turn elsew...

Fortune: Listening in on Stalin, what's bigger than the gender gap, seven powerful professors, and other matters. ONLY IN AMERICA (Cont'dupdated: Mon Jul 27 1992 00:01:00

MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA -- A federal judge has ruled against a . . . firefighter who objected when he was ordered to trim chest hair that protruded from his collar. U.S. District Judge Robert Varner sa...

Fortune: A kind word for Thom McAn, female equality in Michigan, Ford Foundationism, and other matters. THE SPEECH SUPPRESSION MOVEMENTupdated: Mon Jun 19 1989 00:01:00

Hey, remember the Free Speech Movement? That was the great crusade at Berkeley in 1964 -- the New Left uprising that initiated the great student revolution of the Sixties. It seems hard to credit t...

Fortune: The simplest health insurance plan, remembering turtles, religion on the dole, and other matters. FREE EXERCISEupdated: Mon Nov 07 1988 00:01:00

We come now to Frazee v. the Department of Employment Security, a suit that the U.S. Supreme Court recently decided to rule on. Actually, we almost met Frazee on the previous page, as Kindly Dr. Ke...

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