Jacobellis v. Ohio/Concurrence Black

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Opinion of the Court
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Opinion of MR. JUSTICE BLACK, with whom MR. JUSTICE DOUGLAS joins.

I concur in the reversal of this judgment. My belief, as stated in Kingsley International Pictures Corp. v. Regents, 360 U.S. 684, 690, is that,

If despite the Constitution . . . , this Nation is to embark on the dangerous road of censorship, . . . this Court is about the most inappropriate Supreme Board of Censors that could be found.

My reason for reversing is that I think the conviction of appellant or anyone else for exhibiting a motion picture abridges freedom of the press as safeguarded by the First Amendment, which is made obligatory on the States by the Fourteenth. See my concurring opinions in Quantity of Copies of Books v. Kansas, post, p. 213; Smith v. California, 361 U.S. 147, 155; Kingsley International Pictures Corp. v. Regents, supra. See also the dissenting opinion of MR. JUSTICE DOUGLAS [p197] in Roth v. United States, 354 U.S. 476, 508, and his concurring opinion in Superior Films, Inc., v. Department of Education, 346 U.S. 587, 588, in both of which I joined.