CNN's Chris Cuomo gets Twitter-spanked after boneheaded First Amendment gaffe

His claim that the "fighting words" exception applies to hate speech made for "fighting words" on Twitter


follow us in feedly
Scott Eric Kaufman
May 6, 2015 7:49PM (UTC)

It is increasingly difficult for those who identify on the left and right to find anything they agree upon, but this morning CNN anchor and law school graduate Chris Cuomo provided those across the political spectrum with some common ground.

Cuomo was hosting a Twitter conversation about the constitutionality of hate speech and wrote:

Advertisement:

[embedtweet id="595934009764487168"]

First Amendment experts, self-styled and actual and of all political stripes, jumped in to inform him of his wrongness:

[embedtweet id="595952606184374273"]

[embedtweet id="595952133628940288"]

[embedtweet id="595953146280747009"]

[embedtweet id="595951991676870656"]

[embedtweet id="595967247539122176"]

[embedtweet id="595962247781965825"]

Cuomo replied:

[embedtweet id="595956522829651968"]

That word, "chaplinsky," refers to Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, in which the Supreme Court decided that some speech -- like "fighting words," or other statements that incite violence -- aren't protected by the First Amendment. Unfortunately for Cuomo:

Advertisement:

[embedtweet id="595962337179369472"]

[embedtweet id="595958933812072450"]

[embedtweet id="595957666666717185"]

[embedtweet id="595959195909943296"]

Of course, comity between foes of such long-standing must, by necessity, be short-lived, as Breitbart's John Nolte felt the need to mock special needs kids:

[embedtweet id="595968897959997440"]


Scott Eric Kaufman

Scott Eric Kaufman is an assistant editor at Salon. He taught at a university, but then thought better of it. Follow him at @scottekaufman or email him at skaufman@salon.com.

MORE FROM Scott Eric KaufmanFOLLOW scottekaufmanLIKE Scott Eric Kaufman

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Chris Cuomo Ed Morrissey First Amendment Glenn Greenwald John Nolte Popehat Twitter

BROWSE SALON.COM
COMPLETELY AD FREE,
FOR THE NEXT HOUR

Read Now, Pay Later - no upfront
registration for 1-Hour Access

Click Here
7-Day Access and Monthly
Subscriptions also available
No tracking or personal data collection
beyond name and email address

•••


Fearless journalism
in your inbox every day

Sign up for our free newsletter

• • •