Does the First Amendment Stick to Stickers too?

Lat week in Tennessee, Nicholas Ennis was driving his car when the Sheriff’s Department deputies cited him for having an obscene car sticker on the window of his truck. It has the letters “U” and “C” with a rifle on both ends followed by “Gun Control.”

Anyone with a vocabulary that is above a sixth-grade reading level can tell that the line above “Gun Control” is meant to spell out the “F word.”

Ennis is meeting up with his lawyer this week to further discuss fighting against his citation. He argues it is a violation of his First Amendment right to free speech.

And though I cannot find myself to agree with the view of his sticker whatsoever, I do agree with him on the fact that it is his right to have that sticker on his car.

The more that law officials try to take away our First Amendment right to free speech, the more scared we should be as a country. Who gets to be the one deciding that we can’t say certain things, and why do they get to be the ones to decide?

President Adams signed the Sedition Act of 1798 which imprisoned or fined anyone who was caught speaking negatively of the government. However, as soon as President Jefferson came into office, the Sedition Act was no longer. It seems as if Jefferson could respect the criticism coming from people, unlike his former. Thankfully, today we have not been censored in such a way – yet.

As a mother, you probably wouldn’t want your kids to see a sign that denotes the “F word.” But the same applies for people wearing t-shirts that contains the same type of bawdry. You can’t control other people, though, and trying to do that will make an even bigger mess of an already confusing situation. If people are legally allowed to wear shirts that contain the same type of language of the sticker on a car window, then Nicholas Ennis should not be having to fight for his rights.

One thought on “Does the First Amendment Stick to Stickers too?

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  1. I completely see your point here and I can think of so many past experiences that replicate your news story. In high school, I remember kids getting detentions and suspensions even for their confederate flag bumper stickers and sexist car decals (obviously those were different scenarios because they were under school jurisdiction, but same gist) It’s like on one hand, no, obviously I don’t agree with the alt-right, offensive words that decorate certain cars and houses that I share the world with, but if banning that means banning my two cents by default––then I can handle seeing hateful displays in public spaces from time to time. Our society isn’t perfect and never will be and I think sometimes that’s the best thing about it. Not having a standard to compare and regulate most of what we say and express is a right that I think should be exercised frequently.


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