CourtSpeak: Meyer v. Nebraska
Foreign Language Instruction Case (1923)

First Amendment Read more from
Chapter The Taft Court (1921–30)

Justice James McReynolds (majority): “Perhaps it would be highly advantageous if all had ready understanding of our ordinary speech, but this cannot be coerced by methods which conflict with the Constitution…. No emergency has arisen which renders knowledge other than English so clearly harmful as to justify its inhibition with the consequent infringement of rights long freely enjoyed.”


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