Sixth Circuit upholds the First Amendment
Government officials serve at the pleasure of the voters, and not the other way around. Consequently, the majority of a three-judge federal Sixth Circuit panel reinstated Thomas Leonard’s First and Fourth Amendment lawsuit against police officer Stephen Robinson for unlawfully arresting Mr. Leonard for saying "god damn" during the citizen forum at a township council meeting. The case is a worthwhile read both for the First Amendment principles covered therein and for the discussion of governing disorderly conduct jurisprudence. The Sixth Circuit’s February 2, 2007, opinion is here. Jon Katz.