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This week's "News in Brief" sets out the limits on political signs. (Clarkston's zoning ordinance also limits political signs to 60 days before and 14 days after an election.) People should know that these regulations violate the First Amendment. Similar ordinances have been held invalid around the country, including in southeast Michigan. Government can't prohibit speech based on its content, especially when it comes to political speech. Sign ordinances that apply equally to all signs are proper. But ordinances that pick out particular kinds of speech and prohibit them are invalid. Thus limits on the dates when one can display a political sign are not valid. People shouldn't be deterred from displaying political signs on their property by these invalid ordinances. (And the Friends of the Library shouldn't be intimidated into telling me I can't have a lawn sign supporting the library millage until two weeks before the election.)

Richard Bisio
July 11, 2014


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    political signs
    July 17, 2014 | 02:40 PM

    Mr Bisio states that setting limits for when political signs can be placed is invalid. No one is stating that you cannot place political signs. Our first amendment has restrictions such as not being allowed to yell fire in a crowd if there is no fire.
    There are thousands of signs out in places where they don't belong but no one says anything about that.
    If you live in a democracy there are always going to be limits.

    paul badgero
    clarkston
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