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When Arthur Terminiello delivered a speech in an auditorium in Chicago, the auditorium was filled to capacity with over eight hundred people. Outside of the speech, almost one thousand people gathered to protest the speech. Although police were assigned there to maintain order, they could not prevent several disturbances. In his speech, Terminiello condemned the conduct of the crowd outside and criticized various political and racial groups whose activities he denounced as harmful to the nation’s welfare. Terminiello was found guilty of disorderly conduct under a Chicago city ordinance prohibiting “breach[es] of the peace” and subsequently fined.
After becoming aware of a plan among some students to protest the Vietnam War by wearing black armbands during school hours, school officials in Des Moines, Iowa, specifically banned wearing armbands in their schools. Previously, students had been allowed to wear “buttons relating to national political campaigns, and some even wore the Iron Cross, traditionally a symbol of Nazism.” The students wore the armbands in violation of the new policy, were suspended, and subsequently sued.