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Constitutional Law Keyed to Choper
FCC v. Pacifica Foundation
Citation:438 U.S. 726, 98 S.Ct. 3026, 57 L.Ed.2d 1073 (1978).
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*Case Brief Anatomy includes: Brief Prologue, Complete Case Brief, Brief Epilogue
- The Brief Prologue provides necessary case brief introductory information and includes:
- Topic: Identifies the topic of law and where this case fits within your course outline.
- Parties: Identifies the cast of characters involved in the case.
- Procedural Posture & History: Shares the case history with how lower courts have ruled on the matter.
- Case Key Terms, Acts, Doctrines, etc.: A case specific Legal Term Dictionary.
- Case Doctrines, Acts, Statutes, Amendments and Treatises: Identifies and Defines Legal Authority used in this case.
- The Case Brief is the complete case summarized and authored in the traditional Law School I.R.A.C. format. The Pro case brief includes:
- Brief Facts: A Synopsis of the Facts of the case.
- Rule of Law: Identifies the Legal Principle the Court used in deciding the case.
- Facts: What are the factual circumstances that gave rise to the civil or criminal case? What is the relationship of the Parties that are involved in the case. Review the Facts of this case here:
During an early afternoon weekday broadcast, a New York radio station aired George Carlin’s comedy monologue, “Filthy Words.” During the monologue, Carlin spoke of the words that could not be said on the public airwaves. His list included a range of swear words. Immediately prior to the broadcast, the radio station warned listeners that the monologue included sensitive language which might be regarded as offensive to some, and to change the station and return in fifteen minutes if desired. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) received a complaint from a man who stated that he had heard the broadcast while driving with his young son. The FCC censured the radio station for allegedly violating broadcast regulations which prohibited airing indecent material. Although the FCC did not impose formal sanctions, it placed a letter in the station’s file that could be used to enhance future punishments.
- Issue(s): Lists the Questions of Law that are raised by the Facts of the case.
- Holding: Shares the Court's answer to the legal questions raised in the issue.
- Concurring / Dissenting Opinions: Includes valuable concurring or dissenting opinions and their key points.
- Reasoning and Analysis: Identifies the chain of argument(s) which led the judges to rule as they did.
- The Brief Prologue closes the case brief with important forward-looking discussion and includes:
- Policy: Identifies the Policy if any that has been established by the case.
- Court Direction: Shares where the Court went from here for this case.