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Man Forced to Choose Between Jail Time or Facebook Apology

Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

Social media is a perfect example of freedom of speech. Anyone can post anything they like, regardless of what other people may think of it. But if someone forces you to post something on Facebook, is that a violation of free speech?

In Cincinnati, a man blasted his wife on Facebook for divorcing him and taking away his child. But rather than face jail time for his tirade, a judge offered him the option to post an apology to his wife’s Facebook page for 30 days. The decision is raising a few eyebrows for free speech advocates, saying that a federal court forcing a man to post something to Facebook is a violation of his 1st Amendment rights.

But personally, I think the punishment fits the crime here. The guy launched an an angry rant on Facebook, so he should apologize on Facebook. Frankly, this guy got off really easy by choosing to post the apology. Now, if the courts start telling all of us to apologize on Facebook if we commit a crime, then we might have a free speech issue. But is this case a violation of free speech? I don’t think so.

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