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When the State Speaks, What Should It Say?How Democracies Can Protect Expression and Promote Equality$
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Corey Brettschneider

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691147628

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691147628.001.0001

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When the State Speaks, What Should It Say?

When the State Speaks, What Should It Say?

Democratic Persuasion and the Freedom of Expression

(p.71) Chapter Three When the State Speaks, What Should It Say?
When the State Speaks, What Should It Say?

Corey Brettschneider

Princeton University Press

This chapter focuses on democratic persuasion. Although democratic persuasion stresses the importance of an active role for the legitimate state in promoting democratic values, value democracy does not abandon all accounts of neutrality in thinking about freedom of expression. The Supreme Court's doctrine of viewpoint neutrality is appropriate as a standard for limiting state coercion. Viewpoint neutrality means that all viewpoints, regardless of their content, should be protected by freedom of expression, provided they are not direct threats to individuals. However, while viewpoint neutrality is appropriate as a standard for applying the right of free expression to citizens, it is misplaced as a guide to determining the state's own expression and what it should say. The chapter argues that the state should be non-neutral in its persuasive and expressive roles.

Keywords:   democratic persuasion, state roles, democratic values, value democracy, freedom of expression, viewpoint neutrality

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