Free Speech

Sure, talk is cheap. But the right to talk is priceless. Here’s what Goldwater is doing to defend that right.

<p>Sure, talk is cheap. But the right to talk is priceless. Here’s what Goldwater is doing to defend that right.</p>

When Arizona resident Mark Reed planned to vote while wearing a “Tea Party” t-shirt, government officials wanted to keep him out of the polls. The Goldwater Institute argued that Tea Party shirts were constitutionally protected free speech, no different than shirts promoting unions or other advocacy groups. The courts agreed, requiring election officials to use uniform, objective standards without violating the constitution.

By Patrick McNamara

February 6, 2008

Following a cycle of bad press that even began to draw national attention, the Oro Valley Town Council decided at a special session last Wednesday to make public a legal opinion the town sought from an outside law firm.

Town legal officials asked the opinion of the Tucson law offices of DeConcini, McDonald, Yetwin and Lacy in regard to whether or not a local Web blog should register with the town clerk as a political action committee.

A criminal case against Phoenix New Times fell apart Friday amid a crush of public outrage and admissions that a special county prosecutor made serious mistakes.

Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas dismissed all charges against the free weekly newspaper less than 24 hours after two New Times owners were arrested for publishing details of a grand-jury subpoena that demanded the Internet records of any person who had visited the newspaper's Web site since 2004.

Inside Room 4 at a midtown Phoenix preschool, 4-year-old Grace Bunch sang and shouted in Spanish the names of animals, colors and numbers.

For an hour, she practiced how to introduce herself: "Yo soy Grace." She sang two verses of Old MacDonald Had a Farm in Spanish and recited primary colors: rojo (red), verde (green) and amarillo (yellow).

She did it with the help of Dora the Explorer, the superpopular 7-year-old animated Latina adventurer.

Phoenix--The Goldwater Institute is pleased to announce it has partnered with Helium.com to provide its members and other policy enthusiasts an online forum to debate hot policy issues.

Phoenix, AZ--Nationally syndicated radio talk show host Larry Elder, the number one drive-time host in Los Angeles, will be the featured speaker at the Goldwater Institute's Speaker Series luncheon, Wednesday, December 4, 2002, from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m., at the Ritz-Carlton, 2401 East Camelback Road, Phoenix.

Oro Valley's government overreacted when it tried to get a blogger critical of some of its elected officials to register as a political committee. The situation made the town look like a bully and could have been avoided if workers had done more homework.

Art Segal, a 71-year-old blogger, over the past year has repeatedly endorsed a couple of Oro Valley Town Council candidates Salette Latas and Bill Garner who are challenging three incumbents, Vice Mayor Helen Dankwerth, Terry Parish and Barry Gillaspie.

The hazards of expressing a controversial view in the Arizona Republic opinion sections run to outraged phone calls, indignant e-mails and caustic Internet comments. For protection, all a writer needs is a thick skin.

The risks couldn't be more different for Ayaan Hirsi Ali, an outspoken feminist and critic of Islamic extremism.

She needs bodyguards and an armored car.

If you ever have visited the website of Phoenix New Times, your Internet browsing habits may soon be in the hands of Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas. But not before one heck of a First Amendment fight.

Today's Arizona Republic reports that sheriff's deputies arrested New Times owners Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin, for the misdemeanor of revealing Grand Jury proceedings.

A criminal case against Phoenix New Times fell apart Friday amid a crush of public outrage and admissions that a special county prosecutor made serious mistakes.

Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas dismissed all charges against the free weekly newspaper less than 24 hours after two New Times owners were arrested for publishing details of a grand-jury subpoena that demanded the Internet records of any person who had visited the newspaper's Web site since 2004.

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