The Courts Play “Tag”

4 Nov

Image courtesy: North Carolina Policy Watch

In North Carolina, when you purchase and display a specialty license plate, who is speaking—you, or the government of North Carolina? In 2011 the North Carolina General Assembly approved 80 specialty plates, including a “Choose Life” plate.  The ACLU appealed, arguing that citizens who did not agree with the Choose Life viewpoint were denied the same chance to speak up by purchasing a plate with an opposing message. The plates are on hold while oral arguments in the lawsuit are being reviewed by The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.   On its side, North Carolina argues that the plates are not a pubic forum for free speech but an expression of speech by the government, which is not subject to the same constitutional oversight. WRAL covers the issue here, and you can get more in-depth coverage from legal expert Sharon McCloskey.

– Barbara Stenross

(editor’s note: the Durham Tech Paralegal Blog welcomes guest blogger Barbara Stenross!)


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