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Old November 21, 2012, 09:29 AM   #41
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Join Date: December 13, 2005
Posts: 2,594
There is nothing stopping me from verbally speaking about the second amendment and the rights of gun owners. However...if was told that I needed to buy a permit in order to do that, I would consider such a thing to be a violation of my right to free speech. Because that is directly related to the exercise of the right.
I think we would agree that your free speech right isn't limited to the sounds you make when you open your mouth. It applies to publishing your speech as well, right?

The production of leaflets is a method of publishing our speech.

But a tax such as you are talking about is not applied SPECIFICALLY with my right to speech in mind. In that instance, the tax applied to the buying or printing of the leaflets in merely incidental.
It sounds as if you are working toward a test in which the exercise of a right may be taxed, but not if the purpose or effect of the tax is to abridge the exercise of the right. I would guess that this is about how things should work out.

What level of taxation we will consider incidental and what we will see as enforced for the purpose of abridging a right seems very politically and context dependent. Poll taxes seem strictly forbidden, but the freedom to [profitably] contract seems open to limitless taxation.
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