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Collin v. Smith

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
578 F.2d 1197 (7th Cir. 1978)



In the 1970s, the National Socialist Party of America (NSPA) chose the village of Skokie (Village) as the site of a Nazi protest, mainly because of its large population of Jewish people, many of whom were Holocaust survivors. The Village responded by enacting three ordinances intended to prevent the NSPA’s protest. The ordinances collectively required permits for parades and public assemblies, prohibited speech that intentionally promoted hatred against a group on the basis of their race, national origin, or religion, and prohibited demonstrations by political party members wearing military-style uniforms. The NSPA sought to obtain a permit to march while wearing uniforms containing swastikas. The NSPA and its leader, Frank Collin (plaintiff) brought this action to challenge the Village’s ordinances on the grounds that they violated the First Amendment.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Pell, J.)

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