Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Berger v. City of Seattle (9th Cir. - Jan. 9, 2008)

Today was a busy day for the Ninth Circuit, with nine published opinions. But by far the best -- and longest -- of the litter was this one.

It's a classic, and important, debate between conservatives and liberals regarding how much one can legitimately restrict free speech in a public forum. With Judge O'Scannlain representing the righties -- and authoring the majority opinion -- and Judge Berzon representing the lefties.

Both sides make cogent arguments for their position. Both sides of the debate seem reasonable. But, obviously, one of them has the better of the argument.

See which position you find more persuasive. Everyone recognizes the value of free speech. The question is how much the government can limit it. And this case is a perfect framing of the resulting debate.

Great job by both chambers.