Content for Member Papers

NNA provides its members with content they can reprint in their papers or on their websites. This content includes First Amendment columns or editorials from the Freedom Forum, available weekly.

School walkouts in the wake of 'Parkland' — protected by the First Amendment or not?

February 26, 2018

The national walkouts that students are currently organizing to call for new gun control legislation are commendable examples of "Generation Z" exercising its First Amendment freedoms. Unfortunately, students, teachers and other staff are likely to run up against legal limits around free speech and protest on school grounds.

Protect journalists with the same laws that protect all of us

February 1, 2018

I understand the motivation behind the just-proposed Journalist Protection Act, which would make it a federal crime to attack those involved in reporting the news. The legislation comes at a time of particularly vocal attacks on news operations and individual reporters, many of which stem from the highest office in the land.

Let's focus on real journalism — not so-called 'fake news'

January 18, 2018

President Trump's "Fake News Awards," posted late Wednesday, were more gimmick than "gotcha" — worth a moment's attention, perhaps, but not much more.

'Weakening' libel laws is not the right tactic — for anyone

January 11, 2018

Making it easier to sue people for libel is not a good idea — for our democracy in general, and even for President Trump and a few of his personal lawyers, in particular.

The Lazy Person's Guide to Being a Good Citizen

December 26, 2017

You sometimes suspect that you're not as well-informed as you should be. When you read about that study that found that middle school kids were unable to distinguish paid advertisements from news stories, you shook your head sadly — then secretly wondered if you would do much better. You've heard that most people are so entrenched in their own beliefs that even indisputable facts can't change their minds, and would really like to believe you're different from most people. (But doesn't everyone think that?) You have, on at least a couple of occasions, pretended that you were familiar with a subject you actually barely understood.

Two wrongs do not make a 'right' — but they can misuse one

December 7, 2017

Didn't we all learn, long ago, that "two wrongs don't make a right"? But two wrongs can misuse a right — as in our right to free expression, guaranteed by the First Amendment.

We're a big part of the fix for 'junk news'

November 14, 2017

Let's stop talking so much about "fake news." Not that we should ever cease identifying, talking about or countering misinformation, be it accidental error, the result of negligent work, or deliberately false — to which we must now add propaganda tactics aimed at destabilizing our democracy.

Shouting Down Free Speech

November 1, 2017

Is the First Amendment truly in danger? It can certainly seem like it when every week some new and alarming event happens that makes people wonder if our freedom to express ourselves is slipping away.

To Trump on NBC 'License' Tweet: No!

October 12, 2017

There's only one appropriate, spirit-of-freedom response to the "Trump tweet" on Wednesday asking when it's "appropriate" for the government to punish NBC News for a story the president didn't like:

Patriotism, respect for flag cannot be 'ordered'

September 29, 2017

Donald Trump is singing the wrong song about freedom, patriotism and First Amendment values. Over the weekend, Trump.

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