SU students invited to plan events, participate in Newhouse’s Year of the First Amendment
SU students invited to plan events, participate in Newhouse’s Year of the First AmendmentSeptember 11, 2007Wendy S. Loughlinwsloughl@syr.edu
Syracuse University students and student groups are invited to plan events and participate in the Year of the First Amendment, a celebration that will be kicked off by the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications when Newhouse III is dedicated Sept. 19.
“Too often we take for granted the protections of the First Amendment, even when we use them every day,” says Charlotte Grimes, Newhouse’s Knight Chair in Political Reporting and coordinator of the First Amendment celebration. “Life would be very different for students and everyone else here without those precious 45 words.
“Imagine what it would be like, for example, if religion, speech and the press could be controlled by government? Or if we could not gather to protest or could not petition the government to change its policies?” Grimes says. “Students can best celebrate those rights by using them and by teaching others about the First Amendment. We hope students will be creative in celebrating. After all, it’s their First.”
Part of the Bill of Rights, the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees the right to free expression by outlining five freedoms: Freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press, freedom of assembly and freedom to petition the government. During Newhouse’s Year of the First Amendment, each of the five freedoms will be celebrated during a specific month, as follows:
- September: Freedom of religion
- October: Freedom of speech
- November: Freedom of the press
- February: Freedom of assembly
- March: Freedom to petition the government
Students who wish to celebrate freedom of religion this month, for example, might do one of the following:
- organize a concert featuring their favorite religious/spiritual music
- create a documentary or write an article about a religious figure they find important
- organize a movie screening with a religious theme
- invite local religious leaders to speak on campus
- produce a presentation of religious symbols in works of art
For more information or to get involved, contact Adrienne Faillace at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information on the Year of the First Amendment is available by going to http://newhouse.syr.edu/nh3 and clicking on “First Amendment Year.”