Sunday, April 23, 2006

More fun with speech press!

Ok, let's say that you're drafting some statute that bans the sale of porn magazines which depict x, y, and z. Now, you know that you have to be fairly explicit when you list x, y, and z, because otherwise your statute could be successfully challenged on grounds of vagueness. That is, a person has to be able to read the statute and know what's ok and what's not.

Now, the more specific that I get, I'm going to be differentially banning different types of porn magazines, right? That is, don't I start engaging in viewpoint discrimination? Assume that when I say "porn magazines" I mean "obscene porn magazines." How would I get around that problem? I can't just write a law that outlaws everything deemed obscene by Miller, can I? Wouldn't that be heinously vague?

I think this whole "you can't have viewpoint discrimination in a category of unprotected speech" business is pretty suspect.

1 comment:

Fishfrog said...

RAV is a totally bullshit case. I mean, I'm sure Scalia is right in the end (because he always is), but I sure as shit have no way of knowing how he got there.