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George Padgett writes cover story for Quill

George Padgett, an associate professor in the School of Communications, authored the cover story for the November/December 2011 edition of Quill, the magazine produced by the Society of Professional Journalists.

George Padgett

The article, titled "When Bad is Good: 10 Impossible Champions of the First Amendment," describes seminal legal cases surrounding free speech rights. Among the people detailed in the story are Gregory Lee "Joey" Johnson, whose 1984 flag burning was deemed protected speech in a 5-4 Supreme Court decision, and Hustler publisher Larry Flynt, who won a Supreme Court decision after minister Jerry Falwell sued him for the magazine's series of parodies featuring celebrities talking about their "first time."

Padgett writes, "Their stories demonstrate the extreme challenge of living in and maintaining a democratic society. ... They testify to the wisdom of the Founding Fathers in creating a judiciary separate from the election process, as it is likely that had these decisions been put to the will of the voting majority, the results would have been very different."

Colin Donohue,
1/20/2012 9:19 AM