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March 4
“Hot Topics” — First Amendment Center program
“Godless Public Schools — Fact or Fiction?"
6 – 7:30 p.m.
Knight Conference Center at the Newseum

Abington School District v. Schempp is one of the most despised and misunderstood Supreme Court rulings in American history. The Schempp decision striking down state-sponsored prayer and Bible reading stirred emotional debates in 1963 — and continues to do so today. Did the Court really “kick God out of the public schools,” as many Americans believe? How much religion actually comes in the schoolhouse door today? Why do issues involving religion in schools — from the fight over the teaching of evolution to conflicts over Bible electives — continue to fuel the culture wars dividing the country? Join us for a lively discussion separating fact from fiction about the legacy of Schempp.

Ellery’s Protest: How One Young Man Defied Tradition and Sparked the Battle over School Prayer (2009), Stephen D. Solomon

Jeremy Gunn, director, Program on Freedom of Religion and Belief, American Civil Liberties Union
Melissa Rogers, visiting professor, Wake Forest University Divinity School
Colby May, senior counsel, American Center for Law and Justice
Charles Haynes, senior scholar, First Amendment Center

Stephen D. Solomon, associate professor, New York University

RSVP to Ashlie Hampton, or 202/292-6288

March 13
2009 FOI Day Conference

April 28
The Copyright Office Comes to Music City
8:30 a.m.– 5:15 p.m.
First Amendment Center
Nashville, Tenn.

Members of the U.S. Copyright Office will discuss the state of copyright law, including recent legislation, litigation and the impact of evolving technology. See program information.

RSVP or 615/727-1341.

May 14
"Free Expression and Democracy in America"
7 p.m.
William G. McGowan Theater
National Archives Experience
Special Events Entrance, 7th Street and Constitution Avenue, NW

From our nation’s beginnings to its present, many federal and local officials have endorsed the silencing of free expression. A distinguished panel will discuss law, history and the politics of individual rights in the United States. A book signing will follow the program.

Free Expression and Democracy in America, Stephen M. Feldman

Stephen M. Feldman, Jerry W. Housel/Carl F. Arnold Distinguished Professor of Law and Adjunct Professor of Political Science, University of Wyoming, and author of Free Expression and Democracy in America
Judge Thomas L. Ambro, 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals
David M. O’Brien, professor of judicial politics and public law, University of Virginia

Ronald K. L. Collins, scholar, First Amendment Center

RSVP to Ashlie Hampton, or 202/292-6288

Topics of Our Times: First Amendment Center Events
Knight Conference Center at the Newseum, 8th Floor (6th Street entrance, Rooms 802-806)
The First Amendment Center, in conjunction with the Newseum, hosts a series of First Amendment-related evening events, including book events. Many of the most timely and controversial topics of our times are discussed by some of the leading authorities in the nation. New and forthcoming books will also be profiled.

Join us for rich conversation conducted at a unique forum.

RSVP here.

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