Anthony Lewis on the First Amendment

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Freedom of speech is enshrined right there in the American Bill of Rights, but Americans took a long time to really embrace it. By 1798, President John Adams was already blowing by the First Amendment to go after supporters of Thomas Jefferson.

More than a century later, in World War I, Americans were sentenced to 20 years in prison for throwing anti-war leaflets off a rooftop in New York.

Now, post-9/11, the great commentator and longtime New York Times columnist Anthony Lewis is looking at the health and history of free speech today.

This hour, On Point: Anthony Lewis and freedom of speech.


Anthony Lewis, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize and former columnist for The New York Times, where he worked from 1948 to 2001. His new book is "Freedom for the Thought That We Hate: A Biography of the First Amendment."

This program aired on January 10, 2008.


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