One of the questions that arose in the wake of the January 6 attack on the Capitol was whether Trump and others who spoke at the rally were responsible for inciting the violence that occurred afterward. In part two of a series on whether rally organizers should be held responsible for violence and damages done during their rallies, I speak with John Vile, Dean and Professor of Political Science at Middle Tennessee State University.
In this episode, we discuss the 200 years of case law that make it very difficult to find someone criminally liable for what they say in public, whether Trump skirted that line, and explore how civil suits could potentially serve as an end-run around the First Amendment.
You can listen to the full episode via the player below, on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or via the following players.
John contributed extensively to MTSU's First Amendment Encyclopedia, which details the case law around the First Amendment. Here are a few areas related to the above conversation:
- On Freedom of Speech, the Press, and Freedom of Assembly.
- On Incitement to Imminent Lawless Action, the latest Supreme Court statute used to judge cases of incitement to violence.
You can also find an extensive list of books he's published on Amazon (click here for the full list). Two of note: