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Does the U.S. Constitution generally require government to protect the free speech rights of people from being violently suppressed by private individuals like members of antifa?

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Some have claimed that the Constitution does not require government to protect the free speech rights of people from being violently suppressed by private individuals like members of antifa and the Nazis before they rose to power in Germany. They say this is because the First Amendment “only limits the ability of Congress from passing laws that interfere with speech.” To the contrary, the U.S. Supreme Court and Appellate Courts, along with the Declaration of Independence, other founding documents, and the 14th Amendment are clear that the primary purpose of government is to protect people’s constitutional rights from all who would violate them. Thus, the Supreme Court ruled in the 1911 case of Chicago v. Sturges that governments “exist for the maintenance of social order,” and it is “the obligation of the government to protect life, liberty, and property against the conduct of the indifferent, the careless, and the evil-minded” who would deprive people of their unalienable rights.

DocumentationFree Speech SuppressionPrimary Purpose of GovernmentAntifa Background & Tactics



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