The First Amendment, freedom of speech, you can say what you want right?
Well during World War 1 it didn’t turn out like that. Due to the Espionage and Sedition acts, people were getting thrown in jail. Why though? Why would the government establish the greatest and one the oldest constitutions in the world, just to take the biggest part of the foundation away? Though it wasn’t just American civilians targeted by these laws, it was immigrants as well. But one person who stands out, is William Haywood.
The Espionage and Sedition acts were used to silent civilians from speaking out against the war. These laws were introduced to enhance patriotism, make our country look better, and to prevent civilians helping the enemy. (Congress)In World War 1, riots would break out in the streets protesting against the war. In order to prevent these riots, to establish more patriotism, the government retaliated by outlawing all out speak against the war. The government wanted as many people to enlist as possible. To limit the outspeak would improve the enlisting rates. These laws targeted mainly the immigrants. These immigrants were targeted mainly for accusations of spying and helping the enemies. Though it wasn’t always the case. For example the trial of William Haywood.
William Haywood, born in Salt Lake City, Utah, was a hard rock miner who mined for precious metals deep under mountains in the west. William Haywood joined a labor union called Western federation of miners. (Streissguth) He then started protesting and starting rallies, and at the beginning of world war 1, the government started for looking for all the ways they could to get the party shut down. Eventually William Haywood was then arrested and charged against the espionage acts. He died May 18th 1928.
In conclusion the espionage and sedition acts have its place and i do believe that they are needed to establish patriotism. William Heywood Needed to be silenced, or his negative attitude would of gone against what the country was trying to do. When the country isn’t at war we should be allowed to protest but during, we’re already fighting a war there’s no reason we should be fighting in the streets. We have to keep the peace somewhere. I believe though there is a time and place for protesting the first amendment has worked all these years and shouldn’t be changed now. People are entitled to their own opinion, even if we don’t agree with it.