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A federal judge cites the First Amendment in throwing out criminal charges against neo-Nazis. The Trump administration’s major new travel restrictions on visits to Cuba by U.S. citizens include a ban on many forms of educational travel. YouTube won’t remove right-wing commentator’s videos with racist, homophobic taunts harassing reporter for two years. A scholar of the ‘autocratic playbook’ writes about a legal brief filed in support of PEN America’s First Amendment suit against President Trump. School board fires Texas teacher who asked President Trump to round up ‘illegal students’ in tweets she said she thought were private. -Dru Menaker, Chief Operating Officer

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


White Supremacists Keep Beating the Federal Government in Court
A federal judge this week cited the First Amendment in tossing criminal charges against three members of a neo-Nazi organization accused of conspiring to assault their ideological opponents, handing the government another defeat in its struggle to curtail white supremacist violence.

Trump Administration Halts Cruises to Cuba under New Rules
The Trump administration ended the most popular forms of U.S. travel to Cuba, banning cruise ships and a heavily used category of educational travel in an attempt to cut off cash to the island’s communist government.

A Right-Wing Youtuber Hurled Racist, Homophobic Taunts at a Gay Reporter. The Company Did Nothing.
Steven Crowder, a right-wing commentator and comedian, had begun to call out Carlos Maza’s sexuality and his race—Maza is gay and Latino—in some of his videos on YouTube. The video platform announced that Crowder’s videos didn’t violate its policies and that it would leave them on the site.

Opinion: Trump Keeps Threatening the Freedom of Speech
“Freedom of the press is at serious risk, thanks to Trump’s years-long crusade to discredit the media and his creation of a climate of hostility against journalists that is unparalleled in American history. There is evidence that attitudes have already changed among Republicans in ways that threaten liberty of expression.”
*Related coverage on Washington Post, Slate, Reliable Sources, and The Progressive

Texas School Board Votes to Fire Teacher Who Asked Trump to Deport Undocumented Students
The Independent School District board voted 8-0 to terminate high school teacher Georgia Clark. The teacher had been put on paid administrative leave after being tied to a string of tweets asking Trump to remove the “illegals from Fort Worth.”


Australian Police Raids Target News Media Over Leaked Documents
The Australian Federal Police raided the Sydney offices of Australia’s public broadcaster, apparently in connection with an article published in 2017 about Australian special forces being investigated over possible war crimes in Afghanistan.

Turkish Filmmaker Arrested for Protesting Government Confiscation of Archive
Turkish filmmaker and activist Oktay Ince was detained in Ankara on May 30 after he shackled himself to a pole outside the offices of the Ministry of Culture’s General Film Directorate. The arrest was the latest in the Turkish government’s crackdown on dissident activities.

Vietnam Steps up Punishment of Journalists, Bloggers
Twenty-five members of Congress wrote to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo last week to urge greater freedom of expression in Vietnam, where the one-party communist state has aggressively jailed bloggers and activists. Vietnam has one of the world’s worst rankings in press freedom by the group Reporters Without Borders—176th out of 180 nations.

East Africa: What’s It like to Be a Journalist in Rwanda? This Is What They Told Us
We found that while journalists aimed to fulfil traditional roles, like informing and educating the public, they valued their unique role: to promote unity and reconciliation. Having lived through Rwanda’s genocide era, they wanted to prevent a similar tragedy from reoccurring.

DARE is a project of PEN America’s #LouderTogether campaign, bringing you a daily-curated roundup of the most important free expression-related news from the U.S. and abroad. Send your feedback and story suggestions to DARE@pen.org