Explore the First Amendment Freedom to Assemble

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Attending a march in person or virtually in the future?

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Democracy: Some Assembly Required.

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Free to Assemble. Free to Speak.

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The Power of Assembly: Know Your Rights

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The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and to petition the government for change.

To explore the powers of this First Amendment freedom, the Freedom Forum offers historic lessons, First Amendment insights, downloadable posters and social media filters, plus live and recorded programs with key practitioners of the First Amendment right to peaceably assemble.

A First Amendment response to the deadly Capitol Riot

U.S. Capitol

Capitol Rioters Trampled On First Amendment Freedoms
By Gene Policinski
Following the deadly insurrection at the Capitol , we need to take noice of our constitutional rights to freely speak, assemble and petition the government.

Gene Policinski

Violence is Not a First Amendment Protest
Violence, no matter the motive, is not a First Amendment protest. Freedom Forum Senior Fellow Gene Policinski explains why in this video.

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Expert Columns

Read our experts’ columns defending your rights to assemble and petition.


Perspective: New state anti-protest laws, if upheld, threaten to mute our First Amendment freedoms
By Gene Policinski
Through public protests, rallies and marches since the May 2020 death of George Floyd, we have seen a revived, frank — and yes, at times, confrontational — national conversation over racial injustice, policing and other issues.

More columns:


Dig Deeper: Lessons and Toolkits for Teachers, Parents and Students

Multimedia Course: The Constitution and the Civil Rights Movement

Multimedia Course: The First Amendment and the Civil Rights Movement

Protest Primer

How–and Why–Americans Exercise Their Right to Assemble

The Press and the Civil Rights Movement: Video Lesson

Covering Protest: The Press and the Civil Rights Movement

Before and After: Analyzing Turning Points in History

Before and After: Analyzing Turning Points in History

Civil Rights Timeline

Explore Significant Dates, People and Events in the Fight for Racial Equality


Exploring the Freedoms of Assembly and Petition

Make Some Noise

Make Some Noise: Students and the Civil Rights Movement



First Five Now

First Five Now: Understanding the First Amendment in Perilous Times
Following an unprecedented week in the history of the nation, the Freedom Forum presents a special program examining how the interpretation of the First Amendment became a nationwide debate.

DeRay Mckesson

First Five Live: A Conversation with Activist DeRay Mckesson
Civil rights activist DeRay Mckesson talks about what the First Amendment means to him and how it guides his work.

Do You Qualify As An Ally?

Workplace Integrity: Do You Qualify As An Ally? (Especially Now)
The Power Shift Project’s Workplace Integrity webinars provide practical insights for men who want to be allies to women, people of privilege who want to do more to fight inequity and powerful individuals who want to be better advocates for change.

Dr. Marquez Ball

Instagram Live: Dr. Marquez Ball
A conversation with Dr. Marquez Ball, the Washington, D.C. Bureau Religious Affairs Liaison for the National Action Network which is organizing the 2020 March on Washington.

Trabian Shorters

Instagram Live: Trabian Shorters
A conversation with Trabian Shorters, CEO and founder of the BMe Community, a network of innovators, leaders and champions who invest in communities and train leading organizations in matters of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Follow us on Instagram to receive alerts on Live programs with First Amendment Experts.

Rip Patton and Philomena Wankenge

First Five Live: Freedom Rider Rip Patton and Freedom Fighters DC’s Philomena Wankenge
Former Freedom Rider Ernest “Rip” Patton and Philomena Wankenge, a Black Lives Matter activist and a founder of Freedom Fighters DC, discuss the evolution of civil rights activism and their roles in the movement.

Read a related article by USA TODAY Washington correspondent Deborah Barfield Berry.


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