Page:Anuradha Bhasin vs Union of India and Ors.pdf/37

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40. During World War I, many within the US had strong feelings against the war and the draft imposed by the administration of President Woodrow Wilson. During this period, the US enacted the Espionage Act, 1917 which penalised any person who wilfully caused or attempted to cause insubordination, disloyalty, mutiny by refusal from duty or naval services. In any case, in Abraham v. United States, 250 U.S. 616 (1919), Justice Holmes even in his dissent observed as under:

"I do not doubt for a moment that, by the same reasoning that would justify punishing persuasion to murder, the United States constitutionally may punish speech that produces or is intended to produce a clear and imminent danger that it will bring about forthwith certain substantive evils that the United States constitutionally may seek to prevent. The power undoubtedly is greater in time of war than in time of peace, because war opens dangers that do not exist at other times."

(emphasis supplied)

41. The Second World War was also riddled with instances of tussle between the First Amendment and national security issues. An instance of the same was the conviction of William Dudley Pelley,