about 700 words
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Think critically about First Amendment rights as you develop this essay.In your essay, address the questions posed following the scenario, but make it all flow as
though those questions are thoughts you have and know that they must be considered in arriving
at a solution to your journalistic dilemma. Do not list the questions within your essay and then
answer them individually. You must fully justify the path you choose. In other words, whether
you choose a solution that is provided to you within the case scenario or another one you have
come up with on your own, you must explain completely why you have made this choice. Refer
to at least two previously decided cases (precedent) as partial support for your decision. Do not
start off writing the scenario as it appears in this assignment simply to add words to your essay.
You may begin by briefly explaining the dilemma you are facing.
How much information should you report?
You are a reporter for a local newspaper. You come back to the office one day to find several
staff members discussing this story:
Two teenagers have been killed in an automobile accident. The driver, who survived, had been
drinking prior to the accident. The two girls in the back seat, both of whom were killed, were
nude at the time of the accident.
Your colleague, another reporter, is pushing for all the known facts to be reported. But the editor
argues that the fact of the girls’ nudity should not be revealed; he claims that such information
will just be an additional insult to their parents, who already are suffering from the girls’ deaths.
Ask: Do you have a right to publish:
The fact that the driver was drinking?
The fact that the girls were nude at the time of the accident?
Would it be responsible to publish these facts in reporting the accident?
Brainstorm about things to consider in deciding whether to report this information:
Do we have all the facts? Has anyone interviewed the survivor?
Is there evidence of sexual assault?
Does the newspaper have a policy on printing names of sexual-assault victims?
Will publishing the information help anyone else?