Home » Featured » Has anyone ever tried to amend the First Amendment?

By , published on August 17, 2017

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The Supreme Court developed several First Amendment doctrines in cases growing out of conflict between various members of the Communist Party and federal and state officials. In this photo, a mass demonstration is held in front of Federal Courthouse in New York City, June 6, 1949, to protest against Judge Harold Medina who sent Communist conspiracy defendants on trial to jail for contempt of court. The defendants, American Communist Party leaders, are charged under the Smith Act. Joining the picket line at Foley Square are the wives of three of the twelve defendants, starting third from left, Mrs. John Gates, Mrs. Henry Winston and Mrs. Gus Hall. (AP Photo, with permission from The Associated Press)

Some lawmakers have proposed amendments that would change provisions in the First Amendment, such as the Blaine Amendment by House Speaker James G. Blaine in 1875 (pictured) that would have prohibited public support of parochial schools. More recently, a flag protection amendment in 2006 to outlaw flag desecration was introduced. But to date, no amendment altering the First Amendment’s provisions (or the Bill of Rights as a whole) has summoned enough support to pass. 


Read details about these efforts: Constitutional Amending Process.


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