Plaintiff: The Free Speech Coalition which is a trade association of the adult entertainment industry Defendant: Ashcroft, who was an Attorney General
The Free Speech Coalition filed a suit against Ashcroft for upholding the Child Pornography Prevention Act of 1996. The act stated that any distribution, production, or selling of an image, video, or computer generated image that appears to be “of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct.” The CPPA went to extreme measure to prevent children from pornography. It even banned speech that was not obscene to protect from exploitation.
The free speech coalition filed a suit in the federal district court and the court ruled in favor of the government and the Child Pornography Prevention Act Soon after, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the decision The Supreme Court granted a writ of Certiorar and heard oral arguments on October 30, 2001 On April 16, 2002, the Supreme Court made a decision that upheld the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision
The first hearing took place in a federal district court The second hearing took place in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals located in California The final court case took place in the Supreme Court in Washington D.C
The government passed the Child Pornography Prevention Act in 1996 to protect minors from the exploitation of being filmed while engaging in sexual activity The act could go to lengths of banning language that was not obscene to protect the kids if they felt it was necessary The Free Speech Coalition is an associate of the adult entertainment industry and they claimed that the CPPA was depriving them of their right to free speech, so they filed a suit
After hearing the arguments of Chief Justice Kennedy and William Rehnquist, the majority of the jury sided with Kennedy. Kennedy claimed that the act would “prohibit speech that was cleary not obscene according to community standards Other cases involved: Miller V. California, Roth v. the United States, and Ferber v. New York
Outcome: The Supreme Court’s court ruling upheld the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision. Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the majority. He wrote that the CPPA would prohibit speech that was clearly not obscene as defined by the case Miller v. California. He said that “virtual pornography records no crime and creates no victims by its production.” Opinion: we don’t agree with the court ruling because every child deserves to be protected from exploitation. Yes, virtual pornography does not depict actual children, but it could influence the children’s decision to participate in sexual and exploitive acts by seeing other people who resemble minors.
Ashcroft v. Free Speech Coalition (law case) -- Britannica Online Encyclopediahttp://law2.umkc.edu/favicon.ico