Cohen (1971): This is the most important case involving the
state’s right to ban offensive language (in this case, profane
utterance). D (Cohen) wore a jacket bearing the legend “Fuck the
Draft” while walking down a corridor of the L.A. County Courthouse.
D testified that he wore the jacket knowing that the words were on
the jacket as a means of informing the public of his strong feelings
against the Vietnam War and the draft. D was charged with violating
a state statute prohibiting the intentional “disturb[ing] the peace
or quiet of any…person [by] offensive conduct.” Does the First Am.
protect D’s right to wear a jacket with offensive language?
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