The Court decides: Who voted how
By BroadCasting & Cable Staff -- Broadcasting & Cable, 5/28/2000 8:00:00 PM
Below are excerpts from the Supreme Court's Playboy 5-4 ruling. The affirming opinion from Justice Anthony Kennedy was joined by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsberg, David Souter, John Paul Stevens and Clarence Thomas; the dissent, written by Justice Stephen Breyer, was joined by Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Justices Sandra Day O'Connor and Antonin Scalia.
Pro: "As we consider a content-based regulation, the answer should be clear: The standard is strict scrutiny. This case involves speech alone; and even where speech is indecent and enters the home, the objective of shielding children does not suffice to support a blanket ban if the protection can be accomplished by a less restrictive alternative.
"Simply put, targeted blocking is less restrictive than banning, and the government cannot ban speech if targeted blocking is a feasible and effective means of furthering its compelling interests."
Con: "Congress has taken seriously the importance of maintaining adult access to the sexually explicit channels here at issue. It has tailored the restrictions to minimize their impact upon adults while offering parents help in keeping unwanted transmissions from their children.
"By finding 'adequate alternatives' where there are none, the Court reduced Congress' protective power to the vanishing point. That is not what the First Amendment demands."
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