How much do we think we know about the First Amendment? How many of us have looked at and considered the full text? More than likely we rely not on our own reading of the document and its various clauses, but on our Supreme Court’s interpretations and rulings to flesh out its true intent. But, what if the Supreme Court got it wrong?
Burt Neuborne, a former legal director of the ACLU, who has argued many cases before the Supreme Court, contends that oftentimes they have gotten it wrong. In his new book, Madison's Music: On Reading the First Amendment, Neuborne demonstrates that by failing to relate to the text as a coherent whole, the court has incrementally and collectively warped the original intent of the First Amendment.