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Communism
"It is by the goodness of God that, in our country, we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them."
Mark Twain

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Scales

v.

United States
Communism and the First Amendment

Justice Douglas Dissent
June 5, 1961
Seal Of The Supreme Court
Excerpt:

When we allow petitioner to be sentenced to prison for six years for being a "member" of the Communist Party, we make a sharp break with traditional concepts of First Amendment rights and make serious Mark Twain's lighthearted comment that

"It is by the goodness of God that, in our country, we have those three unspeakably precious things: freedom of speech, freedom of conscience, and the prudence never to practice either of them." FOLLOWING THE EQUATOR (1903)


Even the Alien and Sedition Laws -- shameful reminders of an early chapter in intolerance -- never went so far as we go today. They were aimed at conspiracy and advocacy of insurrection and at the publication of "false, scandalous and malicious" writing against the Government.


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