2017: CBLDF Takes Legal Action

December 28, 2017
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CBLDFlogoCBLDF’s legal efforts in 2017 protected our community, overturned unconstitu-tional laws, and preserved the right to free expression. Some highlights:

California’s “Autograph Law”

The Fund helped facilitate the replacement of California’s flawed autograph law, protecting the rights of comics retailers, artists, and bookstores.

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Tobinick v. Novella

CBLDF joined a Media Coalition amicus brief in Tobinick v. Novella, and the court upheld our assertion that speech hosted on a website that also displays ads does not automatically become “commercial speech,” a category of speech that has less protection. This is a valuable victory for creators who publish comics online!

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Virginia’s “Beloved Bill”

CBLDF continued battling the so-called “Beloved bill” in Virginia, which would have required schools to warn parents about materials containing “sexually explicit” content. The latest bill was vetoed by the governor.

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Florida Superintendent’s Ban of “Inappropriate” Books

CBLDF is defending vast swathes of library and classroom materials in Dixie County, Florida, where an order from the superintendent targets for removal any library materials, textbooks, or supplemental texts that contain “profanity, cursing, or inappropriate subject matter.”

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New Hampshire Parental Notification Bill

We joined the National Coalition Against Censorship to protest H.B. 103, an overly broad New Hampshire law that was intended to regulate sex education but was so vaguely worded that it could impact books in other courses, including comics.

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Anti-Science Bills

We joined coalition efforts to protest anti-science bills in Florida, Oklahoma, and South Dakota.

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The Slants

The Slants

Lee v. Tam

We joined a Cato Institute-led amicus brief in Lee v. Tam, a case in which the Supreme Court unani-mously struck down portions of the Lanham Act and upheld an activist Asian-American band’s right to an “offensive” trademark.

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U.S. Immigration Ban

CBLDF joined dozens of organizations to oppose President Donald J. Trump’s immigration ban on individuals from predominantly Muslim countries. Such a ban would impact creative freedom, collaboration, and the free flow of ideas.

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DHS Password Policy

CBLDF joined a massive coalition to condemn a Department of Homeland Security proposal that would require non-citizens to provide their social media passwords as a condition of entering the United States. The policy would invade the privacy of foreign nationals and everyone in their social networks, including millions of U.S. citizens. The proposal also could impact U.S. citizens as other nations emulate DHS’s practices. The overly broad policy puts comics creators and convention-goers participating in events domestically and abroad at risk.

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To find out more about what CBLDF did to defend comics and the right to read in 2017, check out our annual report here.

Help support CBLDF’s important First Amendment work by visiting the Rewards Zonemaking a donation, or becoming a member of CBLDF!

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