452New+York+Times+vs.+Sullivan - New York Times vs....

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New York Times vs. Sullivan I. On March 29, 1960 the New York Times carried a full-page advertisement by four African American Alabama clergymen entitled “Heed Their Rising Voices”. This advertisement described the present state of the civil rights movement in Montgomery, Alabama. There was mention of a peaceful protest performed by students of Alabama State College and claims of inappropriate conduct (excessive force and abuse) on the behalf of the police as well as unfair treatment and numerous (7) arrests of Dr. Martin Luther King in response to small “offenses and, yet more, peaceful protests. L.B. Sullivan, then one of the three Commissioners of Montgomery felt the ad was libelous and was a defamation of his character. Although his name was never mentioned, he felt the “police” directly referred to him. As a result, Sullivan filed a civil suit against the clergymen and the New York Times on the grounds of libel, defamation of character and false statements of facts. The jury returned a
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This note was uploaded on 01/12/2011 for the course COMM 452 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at University of Michigan.

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452New+York+Times+vs.+Sullivan - New York Times vs....

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