Louisiana ex rel. Gremillion v. NCAAP
Argued April 26, 1961
Decided May 22, 1961
366 U.S. 293
The State of Louisiana sued in a nation court to enjoin the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People from doing business in the State because of its failure to conform with a state law requiring certain types of organizations to document annually with the Secretary of State lists in their officers and individuals. That fit changed into removed to a Federal District Court, and appellees sued there for a judgment declaring unconstitutional that statute and another requiring each nontrading affiliation to file yearly a sworn statement that not one of the officers of any out-of-nation association with which it's miles affiliated is a member of any Communist, Communist-front, or subversive agency. The instances have been consolidated, and, after a hearing on affidavits and oral argument, the District Court entered a brief injunction that denied alleviation to the State and its officers and enjoined them from imposing thc two statutes in query.
Held: the judgment is affirmed. Pp. 366 U. S. 294-297.
(a) It isn't always consonant with due manner to require someone to swear to a fact that he can't be expected to recognise, or, instead, to chorus from a wholly lawful hobby. Pp. 366 U. S. 294-295.
(b) The case is in a initial level, and it is not now acknowledged what records will be disclosed in further hearings earlier than the injunction turns into very last; but, if it be proven that disclosure of the Association s club lists consequences in reprisals and hostility to contributors, such disclosure might not be required consistently with the First Amendment, made relevant to the States by using the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. NAACP v. Alabama, 357 U. S. 449; Bates v. Little Rock, 361 U. S. 516. Pp. 366 U. S. 295-297.
181 F. Supp. 37 affirmed.
Page 366 U. S. 294
APPEAL FROM THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF LOUISIANA
The State of Louisiana sued in a nation court docket to enjoin the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People from doing enterprise in the State due to its failure to comply with a kingdom regulation requiring certain varieties of organizations to document annually with the Secretary of State lists in their officials and participants. That match become eliminated to a Federal District Court, and appellees sued there for a judgment asserting unconstitutional that statute and every other requiring every nontrading affiliation to record annually a testimony that none of the officers of any out-of-kingdom affiliation with which it is affiliated is a member of any Communist, Communist-front, or subversive agency. The instances have been consolidated, and, after a listening to on affidavits and oral argument, the District Court entered a transient injunction that denied comfort to the State and its officers and enjoined them from implementing thc two statutes in query.
(a) It isn't consonant with due process to require someone to swear to a fact that he can't be expected to recognize, or, alternatively, to refrain from a completely lawful hobby. Pp. 366 U. S. 294-295.
(b) The case is in a initial level, and it is not now regarded what information could be disclosed in in addition hearings before the injunction will become final; however, if it's proven that disclosure of the Association s club lists effects in reprisals and hostility to individuals, such disclosure might not be required consistently with the First Amendment, made applicable to the States by way of the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. NAACP v. Alabama, 357 U. S. 449; Bates v. Little Rock, 361 U. S. 516. Pp. 366 U. S. 295-297.
MR. JUSTICE DOUGLAS delivered the opinion of the Court.
One of the suits that is consolidated on this appeal became instituted in 1956 through the then Lawyer General of Louisiana in opposition to appellee, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, in a Louisiana court docket and sought to enjoin it from doing commercial enterprise in the State. It turned into removed to the federal court docket. [Footnote 1] Thereafter, NAACP sued appellants inside the federal courtroom soliciting for a declaratory judgment that legal guidelines of Louisiana were unconstitutional. A three-decide courtroom become convened (28 U.S.C. § 2281) and the cases were consolidated. After a hearing (on affidavits) and oral argument, the courtroom entered a temporary injunction that denied relief to appellants and enjoined them from implementing the two laws in query. 181 F. Supp. 37. The case is right here on appeal. 28 U.S.C. § 1253. We mentioned probably jurisdiction. 364 U.S. 869.
One of the two statutes of Louisiana in question prohibits any "non-buying and selling" association from doing enterprise in Louisiana if it's far affiliated with any "overseas or out of nation non-trading" association
"any of the officers or members of the board of directors of which might be participants of Communist, Communist-front or subversive companies, as stated with the aid of the House of Congress [sic] un-American Activities Committee, or the US Lawyer. [Footnote 2]"
Every non-buying and selling affiliation affiliated with an
Page 366 U. S. 295
out-of-kingdom association should report yearly with Louisiana s Secretary of State a testimony that "none of the officials" of the affiliate is "a member" of the sort of employer. [Footnote 3] Penalties towards the officials and participants are supplied for failure to report the affidavit and for false filings.
The NAACP is a New York enterprise with some 40-eight administrators, twenty vice-presidents, and ten chief govt officers. Only some reside or paintings in Louisiana. The District Court commented that the statute "might require the impossible" of the Louisiana citizens or workers. 181 F. Supp. at 40. We have obtained no extreme reply to that criticism. Such a demand in a law compounds the vices found in statutes struck down resulting from vagueness. Cf. Winters v. New York, 333 U. S. 507. It isn't always consonant with due procedure to require someone to swear to a fact that he cannot be expected to understand (cf. Tot v. United States, 319 U. S. 463) or as an alternative to chorus from a wholly lawful hobby.
The different statute [Footnote four] calls for the principal officer of
"each fraternal, patriotic, charitable, benevolent, literary, scientific, athletic, army, or social company, or organization created for similar functions"
and working in Louisiana to file with the Secretary of State yearly "a full, whole and authentic list of the names and addresses of all of the members and officials" inside the State. has memberships of companies whose lists have not been filed are prohibited from protecting or attending any meeting of the organization. Criminal consequences are connected each to officers and to contributors.
We are instructed that this regulation became handed in 1924 to minimize the Ku Klux Klan, however that it turned into in no way enforced in opposition to every other company until this litigation began; that, while the State added its in shape, a few associates of NAACP
Page 366 U. S. 296
in Louisiana filed club lists; and that after the ones filings, individuals have been subjected to financial reprisals. 181 F. Supp. at 39. The State denies that this regulation is presently being enforced handiest towards NAACP; it also challenges the assertions that disclosure of membership in the NAACP results in reprisals. While hearings were held before the temporary injunction issued, the case is in a initial level, and we do no longer understand what facts further hearings earlier than the injunction will become final may also reveal. It is clear from our decisions that NAACP has status to say the constitutional rights of its individuals. NAACP v. Alabama, 357 U. S. 449, 357 U. S. 459. We address a constitutional right, seeing that freedom of association is covered within the package deal of First Amendment rights made relevant to the States through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Id., p. 357 U. S. 460; Bates v. Little Rock, 361 U. S. 516, 361 U. S. 523. And where it is proven, as it changed into in NAACP v. Alabama, supra, 357 U. S. 462-463, that disclosure of membership lists outcomes in reprisals against and hostility to the individuals, disclosure is not required. And see Bates v. Little Rock, supra, 361 U. S. 523-524.
We are in a place in which, as Shelton v. Tucker, 364 U. S. 479, emphasised, any law need to be exceedingly selective in order to survive challenge under the First Amendment. As we there said:
". . . despite the fact that the governmental motive be legitimate and tremendous, that motive can't be pursued by approach that broadly stifle essential personal liberties whilst the give up may be extra narrowly completed."
Id., 364 U. S. 488.
The most common expressions of that view have been made in cases handling neighborhood ordinances regulating the distribution of literature. Broad comprehensive rules of those First Amendment rights have been time and again struck down (Lovell v. Griffin, 303 U. S. 444; Schneider v. State, 308 U. S. 147; Cantwell v. Connecticut,
Page 366 U. S. 297
310 U. S. 296), although the strength to adjust the time, way, and location of distribution turned into in no way doubted. As stated in Schneider v. State, supra, 308 U. S. a hundred and sixty-161, the municipal government have the proper to "regulate the behavior of these the usage of the streets," to offer visitors policies, to prevent "throwing literature broadcast inside the streets," and the like. Yet, even as public safety, peace, comfort, or convenience can be safeguarded by regulating the time and way of solicitation (Cantwell v. Connecticut, supra, 310 U. S. 306-307), the ones rules want to be "narrowly drawn to prevent the meant evil." Id., 310 U. S. 307. And see Talley v. California, 362 U. S. 60, 362 U. S. 64.
Our modern-day application of this precept was in Shelton v. Tucker, supra, wherein we held that, while a State has the undoubted right to inquire into the health and competency of its instructors, a detailed disclosure of each viable kind of associational tie a teacher has had probed into relationships that "could don't have any possible bearing upon the trainer s occupational competence or fitness." Id., 364 U. S. 488.
At one intense is criminal behavior which can not have refuge in the First Amendment. At the opposite excessive are regulatory measures which, regardless of how sophisticated, can't be employed in purpose or in effect to stifle, penalize, or lessen the exercise of First Amendment rights. These traces mark the vicinity wherein the prevailing controversy lies, as the District Court rightly observed.
MR. JUSTICE HARLAN and MR. JUSTICE STEWART concur within the end result.
See additionally State v. NAACP, La.App., ninety So. 2nd 884.
La.Rev.Stat., 1950, § 14:385 (1958 Supp.).
La.Rev.Stat., 1950, § 14:386 (1958 Supp.).
La.Rev.Stat., 1950, §§ 12:401 to twelve:409.
MR. JUSTICE FRANKFURTER, whom MR. JUSTICE CLARK joins, concurring in the judgment.
One of the important considerations that caused the enactment of the Norris-LaGuardia Act, forty seven Stat. 70
Page 366 U. S. 298
limiting the jurisdiction of the District Courts to grant injunctions in hard work controversies, turned into that such injunctions had been granted, normally through way of brief comfort, on the premise of affidavits. I am of the view that the problems that get up in controversies like the present one are likewise greater securely adjudicated upon a basis of oral testimony, instead of affidavits. At all events, I am dubious approximately a hard and fast rule, including that which is apparently in effect within the District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, barring oral testimony -- difficulty to the same old safeguards of cross-examination -- in court cases for a transient injunction. I expect that oral testimony can be available in a intending to make the brief injunction everlasting.
In this understanding, I concur within the judgment of the Court.
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