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August 06, 2004


another question: has the freedom of the press clause of the first amendment ever been held to protect something that the freedom of speech clause didn't?

my favorite is "Knock, Knock."/"who's there?". The Texas Republican platform under W./ What do you want?/The adopted children of gay people/ the amount of screams at your leisure.

And they won, both the state and the country. And we've had nothing to really worry about, except one little proposed Constitutional Amendment, scores of State Amendments against gay marriage and more kids in foster homes and orphanages due to discrimination of gay parents.

I too would like to hear about cases on quartering, but I have to say, knock-knock jokes seem like a great mnemonic for constitutional protections. Any others out there?

"knock-knock jokes seem like a great mnemonic for constitutional protections."

I got one.

"Who's there? Hey, you're supposed to knock! Hey, what about the Fourth Amednm...aaghhgh"

The third amendment is definitely anachronistic. Along with the 20 bucks in the 7th. Hadn't they heard of inflation? Honestly.

I wish I'd learned my amendments with knock knock jokes. Instead, I got numerology. You see, the amendment says "no quartering of soldiers" and a quarter is 1/4 and 4-1=3 so it's the 3rd amendment.

"Two bare arms" was more straightforward.

Well, this was grade school. -- Actually, they got the first amendment wrong: that skit featured people talking about robbing a bank and being arrested and invoking their right to free speech. That night I told my Dad (a law professor) how I had learned that if you wanted to commit a crime you could actually do all the planning in front of the police, and if memory serves we had a nice conversation about conspiracy laws.

Knock, knock!

Who's there?

I'm running for President! Vote for me!

Oh, okay.

Knock, knock!

Who's there?

I'm President! Vote for me!

Oh, okay.

Knock, knock!

Who's there?

I'm President! Vote for me!


Why not? Don't you think I've done a good job over the past 8 years?

Yes, but the 22nd Amendment of the Constitution says "No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice". So goodbye.

Oh. Goodbye.

(Hey, this is fun, in a really stupid sort of way... a good project for a grade school class, invent skits for each Amendment and play them in front of the class.)

I'd especially like to see the skit that a bunch of grade school kids would come up with for the 25th Amendment... ;-)

I think the 16th and 21st Amendments would be pretty funny too...

hilzoy, for an answer to your question, check this site. Brief highlight:

...the Third Amendment has proven to be one of the least-litigated sections of the Constitution. The Supreme Court has never directly reviewed the meaning of the amendment. Indeed, only one court has ever confronted the meaning of the amendment, in a case decided nearly 200 years after it was ratified...

I keep wanting to filk the Bill of Rights to the Twelve days of Christmas, but it just won't scan, dammit. Even if I include the two that didn't make it to begin with. :)


PS: The Five verse wrote itself, of course: "I... PLEAD... THE... FIFTH!!!!!"

kenB: Thanks! That was exactly what I was looking for.

Poor old third amendment: no one pays attention to it. Back when people were identifying themselves as first-amendment liberals and second-amendment conservatives and the like, I used to insist that I was a third-amendment leftist. Oddly enough, no one seemed inclined to join me.

Hilzoy, I'll join you. ;-) The third amendment is evidently one that everyone can get behind.

PS Curse you, Moe. That's going to run through my head for days now.

*wanders off, humming*

On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love said to me...

"PS Curse you, Moe."

Be grateful that I didn't mention... no. I shall be merciful.

All hail the Third,


_Engblom v. Carey_ is the only Third Amendment case I know of that got up to even the Court of Appeals level.

_Engblom_ had to do with National Guardsmen quartered in the dormitory-style on-site housing of prison guards during a prison strike in New York State. The Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed a lower-court decision that had thrown the prison guards' suit out on summary judgement, but the suit ultimately failed because whether the Third Amendment applied in those circumstances was sufficiently unclear that the defendants were protected by qualified immunity.

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