pageok
pageok
pageok
Not the Best Way of Putting It:

From a Supreme Court merits brief:

[The law] suppresses speech and beliefs that are protected by the First Amendment in an impermissible way.

Related Posts (on one page):

  1. What a Bad Supreme Court Brief:
  2. Not the Best Way of Putting It:
Jon Rowe (mail) (www):
How about:

The law impermissibly suppresses speech and beliefs protected by the First Amendment.
10.23.2007 3:20pm
Hans Bader (mail):
The Supreme Court itself created this mindset by saying that even core political speech at the heart of the First Amendment can be banned by a speech restriction that is justified by a "compelling interest" that is no broader than needed to achieve that "interest," which may itself be ridiculously broad and trivial. See, e.g., Hans Bader, Bong Hits 4 Jesus: The First Amendment Takes a Hit, 2007 Cato Supreme Court Review 133, 147-49 (2007) (listing range of trivial interests the Supreme Court has deemed "compelling," and justices' own confession that what qualifies as a compelling interest is essentially standardless).
10.23.2007 3:21pm
Jon Rowe (mail) (www):
Or maybe:

The First Amendment protects the speech and beliefs the law suppresses.

You could qualify "supresses" with "impermissibly," but that term might be redundant.
10.23.2007 3:22pm
GV_:
How about cut out the unnecessary preposition and adverb: The law suppresses speech and beliefs that the First Amendment protects. Of course, depending on the underlying issue, the "in an impermissible way" verbiage could be doing some work. Thus, you could write: The law suppresses speech and beliefs that the First Amendment protects in an impermissible way.
10.23.2007 3:24pm
Hans Bader (mail):
Oops, I meant to say:

"The Supreme Court itself created this mindset by saying that even core political speech at the heart of the First Amendment can be banned by a speech restriction that is justified by a 'compelling interest,' as long as the speech restriction is no broader than needed to achieve that 'interest,' even if the 'interest' invoked to justify suppressing the speech is itself be ridiculously broad and trivial. See, e.g., Hans Bader, Bong Hits 4 Jesus: The First Amendment Takes a Hit, 2007 Cato Supreme Court Review 133, 147-49 (2007) (listing range of trivial interests the Supreme Court has deemed "compelling," and justices' own confession that what qualifies as a compelling interest is essentially standardless)."
10.23.2007 3:25pm
Mike Keenan:

Thus, you could write: The law suppresses speech and beliefs that the First Amendment protects in an impermissible way.


That is just as bad!

In an impermissible way, [The law] suppresses speech and beliefs that are protected by the First Amendment.
10.23.2007 3:27pm
Cornellian (mail):
I know partners at major law firms who would be yelling at the associate who wrote a sentence like that.
10.23.2007 3:28pm
Ben P (mail):
heck, I know 10th grade English teachers that would chastise (probably not yell, but only because of context) sophomores for writing sentences like that.

It's clearly bad construction in that it implies "impermissible way" modifies protected, when the author almost certainly meant that the suppression was impermissible.
10.23.2007 3:39pm
Constitutional Crisis (mail):
Or you could do it Yoda style:

Impermissibly suppresses the law protected speech and beliefs by the First Amendment.
10.23.2007 3:47pm
Ben P (mail):
Why not Lolcat style?

"I are Impermissibly suprressing your first amendment speeches?"


It'll fit right in with the other law related lol cat's I've accumulated.
For Example Click Here
10.23.2007 3:51pm
bla bla (mail):
The sentence is fine. Maybe some of the sentences in the comments are slightly better, but is the difference great enough that this merits an entire blog post?
10.23.2007 3:53pm
ras (mail):
If the phrase was intended to hilite the erosion of free speech, then the words chosen might be the best way of phrasing it after all. Seems to be working here.
10.23.2007 3:56pm
Fabian Gonell:
[The law] suppresses speech and beliefs that are protected by the First Amendment, and does so in an impermissible way.
10.23.2007 3:57pm
Crunchy Frog:
Well, you found it noteworthy enough to comment on it.
10.23.2007 3:57pm
quasimodo (mail):
"[The law] suppresses speech and beliefs that are protected by the First Amendment in an impermissible way"

Had the law suppressed them differently it would have been ok?

The First Amendment protected them impermissibly?
10.23.2007 4:23pm
Dave!:
"I know partners at major law firms who would be yelling at the associate who wrote a sentence like that."

And I suspect there are partners at major law firms *writing* sentences like that...
10.23.2007 4:25pm
percuriam:
How about:
"the law impermissibly suppresses speech and beliefs that are protected by the 1st amendment."
10.23.2007 4:39pm
John Jenkins (mail):
"The law suppresses speech and beliefs protected by the First Amendment."

The fact that the speech and beliefs are protected, means that the infringement is impermissible, therefore the word impermissibly adds nothing substantive.
10.23.2007 4:42pm
DJR:
Constitutional Crisis:

Impermissibly suppresses protected speech the law does; protected by the First Amendment they are.

Ben P:

IN UR SPEECH N BLEEFZ. IMPERMISSABLY SUPPRESSING! 1ST MNDMT @PWNED!
10.23.2007 4:45pm
Christopher Cooke (mail):
Jon's rewrite is okay, but I would get rid of "impermissibly"


The other problem with the sentence, apart from the misplaced modifier, is the author's use of passive voice. I generally only use the passive voice when I am deliberately trying to be ambiguous about who did what.
10.23.2007 4:47pm
another anonVCfan:
The law violates the First Amendment because it impermissibly suppresses protected speech and beliefs.
10.23.2007 4:53pm
Hans Bader (mail):
My point in the above comments was only that in the eyes of the Supreme Court, there is, oddly, such a thing as a "permissible" suppression of protected classes of speech, whenever the Supreme Court makes up a compelling interest to justify it, since even under so-called strict scrutiny, protected classes of speech can be banned to promote a "compelling state interest" (and as I noted in 2007 Cato Supreme Court Review 133, 147-149 (2007), the courts consider almost any legitimate end a "compelling state interest").

I was not saying that the case in which the brief was filed involves core political speech, or even protected speech.

My comments were about First Amendment standards in general, not the merits of the case in particular, and were not an endorsement of the legal position advocated by defense counsel in the case in which the brief was filed.
10.23.2007 4:54pm
dearieme:
You can't do that there here.
10.23.2007 4:59pm
Tony Tutins (mail):
We could always resolve the ambiguity this way: The First Amendment impermissibly protects speech and beliefs that are suppressed by [this law].
10.23.2007 5:14pm
JBL:
I take it the brief is arguing that the law in question should be upheld against a First Amendment challenge, since using the First Amendment to protect speech and beliefs in in a certain manner is impermissible according to...I dunno, maybe something in Article II?...
10.23.2007 5:33pm
Kazinski:
Nothing wrong with the sentence. Its what us conservatives facists have been saying for decades: The 1st amendment does protect speech in an impermissable way.
10.23.2007 6:02pm
aces:
All your impermissible suppression are belong to us.
10.23.2007 6:09pm
Constitutional Crisis (mail):

Constitutional Crisis:

Impermissibly suppresses protected speech the law does; protected by the First Amendment they are.

I just realized I made an error in the second clause:

Impermissibly suppresses protected speech and beliefs the law does; protected by the First Amendment are they. Sorry for any confusion.
10.23.2007 6:27pm
Brian G (mail) (www):
Obviously, they haven't book your book.
10.23.2007 9:03pm
Brian G (mail) (www):
I meant, of course, "bought" your book.
10.23.2007 9:07pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
Law bad. Tree pretty.
10.23.2007 9:10pm
KevinM:
COme on, people how about a little pizazz?

IMPERMISSIBLE!!!!! This law suppresses First Amendment speech!!! And I mean that in a bad way!!!
10.24.2007 11:31am
Tony Tutins (mail):
KevinM: there's a lot to be said in favor of the simple declarative sentence.
10.24.2007 11:58am