Whether it's the news media or NFL protests, liberals continue to criticize the White House for trying to "limit free speech." But one constitution law expert says it really comes down to a lack of understanding of the First Amendment.
Just because the White House threatens a lawsuit, or even suggests revoking the license of a news outlet, that doesn't amount to "government interference" as some have claimed.
“We need to actually look at what the president’s tweets are saying, what’s actually going on and be more skeptical of the news media and require veracity and verifying from them,” says Dr. Jenna Ellis is a law professor at Colorado Christian University.
“If Americans actually understood the Constitution and Bill of Rights in context, we would be able to have much more civil dialogue and discourse than what’s going on today.”
Ellis says freedom of the press means the government cannot interfere with the distribution of information -- not that it may ever impose restrictions. She says the president has yet to actually advocate anything that would violate anyone's free speech.
“America has this presumption that freedom of speech is absolute and anyone who is looking to say ‘well, maybe you shouldn’t publish something that is a false news story’ but it doesn’t have any sort of legal remedy, and that’s just not the case,” says Ellis.
“We saw that in the context of the NFL as well, there was some measure of people who thought those players could never be told by an employment contract that they had to stand for the national anthem.”