Talk:Sedition Act of 1918

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Modern sedition[edit]

Is there a Federal law dealing with sedition today?

I believe Ollie North called, at one political convention, for Ice T (or was it Ice Cube? Whoever did that "Cop Killa" song) to be charged under federal sedition laws. Either Ollie North was lying about the existence of sedition laws, or ol' Ollie's audience probably just giggled at the irony of an actual treason-committed such as Ollie North calling for such a thing against someone who was merely an untalented rap artist, since it obviously never took place anyway. --I am not good at running 05:28, 1 May 2005 (UTC)
No I don't think there are sedition laws. There are libel and slander laws, but those are a bit different. I'm no lawyer but I think theoretically you could be charged for libel against the US government just as you can against any other entity (a person or corporation for example.) But I doubt such a charge would go over well. I could be wrong, there may be some provision making the US government a fair target for libel and slander--I doubt it though. Its probably just not something anyone is willing to prosecute. Brentt 01:48, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

if there was i belive it would be unconstitutional. guest —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:46, 9 January 2008 (UTC)


How does one go about challenging the neutrality of an article here?

The claim that the act was "in conflict with the US Constitution's First Amendment" is an example of editorializing. That the majority of the Founding Fathers themselves (who wrote the Constitution) supported such an act in their day (Alien and Sedition Act of 1798 anyone?) needs to be taken into consideration when talking about these matters -as does the US Supreme Court upholding the validity of the act in 1919. Nonetheless, the article should be amended to say that the act can "arguably be said to conflict with the US Constitution's First Amendment" because that argument can be made as can the converse argument. The goal here is POV neutrality right? Ishawnm (talk) 03:39, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

I would challenge the notion that the majority of founding fathers supported sedition acts - One would do well to recall that the Alien and Sedition Acts led to the downfall of both Adams and his party. Nwlaw63 (talk) 22:54, 18 November 2008 (UTC)
You can edit the text of biased articles yourself. As it happens, I've just rewritten the portion of this article you pointed out, but feel free to make further revisions. You can also put the {{NPOV}} tag at the top of the article and leave a note on the talk page, if you don't know what to change the text to, or want to get others' opinions. -- Beland 05:48, 3 December 2007 (UTC)

I think the neutrality challange can be removed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:55, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Anarchist Act[edit]

I have seen this in other places quoted as the Anarchist Act of 1918. I would like that included on the main page, but can't find a reputable source at the moment. Butterflyvertigo 17:00, 15 February 2007 (UTC)

This is not the Anarchist Act. That's very casual language. There is the Anarchist Exclusion Act of 1903, which the Immigration Act of 1918 amended to greatly enlarge the definition of "anarchist." The Immigration Act of 1918 does not yet have an entry on Wikipedia. Its expansion of the definition of "anarchist" is described here Anarchist_Exclusion_Act#Immigration_Act_of_1918. Hope that helps.

Bmclaughlin9 (talk) 19:39, 11 February 2010 (UTC)

Copying to Wikisource[edit]

Is this the complete text of the act? If it is not, it should not be moved to Wikisource. --Benn Newman 17:23, 21 December 2006 (UTC)

True, but it's also too long to be in this article. I say it should be removed or heavily cropped down. If someone feels like putting the full text up at Wikisource, or providing an external link with the full text, then that's another matter. Silverhelm 21:58, 21 December 2006 (UTC).
I would heavily agree. A long strand of text such as this seems to be primarily a target for vandals. Sim (talk) 03:56, 26 June 2008 (UTC)

Done. Int21h (talk) 11:54, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

But you really need not sprinkle citations throughout the summary unless you're citing something that people are arguing about. The summary can be citation-free as long as it really only summarizes the body of the article and the citations appear below at the appropriate point in the text. That makes the summary easier to read and avoids multiple citations to the same thing. Most summaries keep citations to an absolute minimum. Bmclaughlin9 (talk) 18:18, 5 September 2011 (UTC)

which "experts"[edit]

claimed it was against the bill of rights?

The Supreme Court upheld it RomanYankee( 17:47, 10 April 2007 (UTC))

Typo: bottom of the fourth paragraph, it says' "and the war became illegal under this law." coming from someone who is not already familiar with this Act and its consequences, I think this sentence is unclear. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:21, 1 March 2009 (UTC)

The fact that this was repealed in 1921 needs to be included. 22:57, 17 July 2007 (UTC)


Bmclaughlin9 (talk) 05:13, 12 February 2010 (UTC)

H.R. 1955: Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007[edit]

Might want to provide a brief discussion of this legislation which is currently pending before the U.S. Senate (as of November, 2007). It is at least thematically related to the Sedition Act of 1918 as well as the original Sedition Act of 1798 and could make for an interesting paragraph pertaining to the evolution of such thought in U.S. law. Regards, -- Hadrian Swall 17:36, 14 November 2007 (UTC) Hadrian swall

added as See also

Bmclaughlin9 (talk) 05:13, 12 February 2010 (UTC)


Debs was convicted under the espionage act, not the sedition act. -- (talk) 18:35, 18 February 2008 (UTC)

Fixed. Nishkid64 (talk) 19:03, 18 February 2008 (UTC)


I removed this sentence:

One historian has claimed claimed that the reason there is so little information available today about the 1918 influenza pandemic is that the newspapers feared reporting about it might have lowered the morale of the civilians supporting the war effort and the morale of the troops fighting the war. The media claimed, "There is no need to worry. There is no epidemic."[1]

Barry does not make that claim. He mentions the Sedition Act once when setting the scene (pp. 123-4) for the epidemic. When he discusses newspaper coverage (pp. 335-41, 460-1) he describes how public officials and newspapers minimized the influenza's effects in order to keep the public calm and avoid panic. The quote -- "There is no need to worry. There is no epidemic." -- is a typical newspaper's attitude. He makes no connection to the Sedition Act or even to the war effort.

One interesting detail: he has examples of some statements where people suggest that the influenza in the work of the Germans. (p. 343)

Bmclaughlin9 (talk) 21:59, 14 February 2010 (UTC)

Post 9/11[edit]

I recall a lot of Bush supporters passing around the Sedition Act and e-mailing it to people who spoke out agaisnt Bush's policies on the Internet, conveniently ignoring that the act was repealed. I have some messages still in my e-mail about it, but those are not acceptable sources for Wikipedia. Do we have some documentation of this phenomenon? --Scottandrewhutchins (talk) 04:40, 13 July 2010 (UTC)

Eugene V. Debs[edit]

I have opened a discussion at Talk:Eugene V. Debs#Which is it? concerning the information about Eugene V. Debs in this article. Please join the discussion there. -- GB fan 19:18, 8 February 2016 (UTC)

  1. ^ John M. Barry, The Great Influenza