The case entitled Korb v. Raytheon Co., 707 F. Supp. 63 (D. Mass. 1989) took place at the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts on February 15, 1989. The main issues brought about by these cases were claims between two individuals who had previously been working together as they argued different claims of their free speech rights. The plaintiff at hand, Korb was a former executive of the Raytheon Company and the defendant was his long term employer, Raytheon. Lawrence J. Korb was reported to have been dismissed from his position as vice president for Washington operations of Raytheon Corporation simply because he publicly expressed his own views and ideas in direct conflict with the corporation’s economic interest.
The facts in this case are that Korb had been hired by Raytheon in 1985 as vice president in charge of Washington operations. In this respect, He was therefore put in charge of congressional relations and acted as a liaison with various government departments, including the Department of Defense on behalf of the company. Another fact in the case is that the dispute stems from Korb’s public criticism of spending policies, a matter in which Raytheon, had a special interest. The main issue in the case is that Korb might have been wrongfully terminated for expressing his freedom of expression and the right to express his opinion in the manner that he deemed fit at that instance in time.
The rule is that an individual is allowed to express their views and opinions in any forum except in special occasions. This is upheld by the right to speech which is also referred to as the freedom of expression. In this case the plaintiff expressed his right and was laid off because of exercising his right, contrary to the law at the time.
There are several challenges that have been noted following the introduction of freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is a human right that is accorded to most citizens of most parts of the world. It is mainly protected by the First amendment of the U.S. This allows individuals to voice their concerns and issues without fear that they may be arrested or acted against for instance in this case, stand at risk of losing their jobs. Lawrence Korb in this case, lost his job for merely expressing his own views as per the position that he was at that time. In normal instance, the right allows individuals to express themselves and their views on pertinent issues freely. This right is depicted under Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
It is also recognized under international human rights law in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). Here, it is stated that “everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference” and “everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice”. Further on in the article, it is indicated that the right may be limited to “special duties and responsibilities” and may “therefore be subject to certain restrictions” when necessary “for respect of the rights or reputation of others” or “for the protection of national security or of public order (order public), or of public health or morals”.
Despite of all this, there are challenges with freedom of speech or expression. To begin with, people may express themselves freely in a manner likely to offend other individuals. This is because, when people are allowed to talk freely, expressing themselves in whichever manner they want, disagreements are bound to happen and when these then arise, there may be several conflicts involved which may then have very dire consequences in the long term yet these individuals may freely defend themselves with that act and thus escape the long arm of the law even if they were the perpetrators of the said offense. Next, the freedom of expression can easily lead to occurrences such as cyber bullying in the present internet laden world. This is because the individuals on the internet may easily use their freedom of expression to make derogatory remarks that could amount to cyber bullying in the internet. This has previously led to undesired consequences such as suicide among several other effects.
Freedom of information is a right that allows citizens to obtain access to information of issues surrounding and about the government. It is upheld by the freedom of information act. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is a law that gives you the right to access information from the federal government. This is the law that keeps citizens abreast about their government and whatever happens in their government
There are several challenges that have arisen with this right; to begin with, release of certain critical and crucial information to the general public may lead to unwarranted jeopardy of relationships between different countries. This would ultimately in the dire cases interfere with the initial relationship that was existent in the different countries. It could also yield unwarranted animosity between different individuals among different positions within the government itself. Also, release of crucial information to the public can easily interfere with diplomatic negotiations. For instance if two different countries or states for that matter were in specific negotiations and then some information arises from the government that might not be pleasant to one party, this could interfere with the entire negotiations process and jeopardize crucial steps in development for that matter
Another disadvantage is that it puts a lot of pressure among the persons responsible for provision of the information. In most instances, individuals express their right to this for non-crucial or critical issues. This in turn leads to wastage of time over the same, and resources which could be put into other important uses. This mainly occurs in instances where citizens only view this as a hobby and request for the information just for the sake of it.
Employment law, also referred to as labor law is the act that allows for a functional relationship and mediates the relationship between workers and their employers, several trade unions and the government. The law provides the required norms for any employee and their employer or prospective employer for that matter. It therefore allows for good working conditions for the employee without posing a direct negative effect on the employer part. This allows the company to thrive but in the comfort and satisfaction of both the employer and the employee, or in the cases of trade unions, between them and the government itself.
There are several challenges that are associated with employment law. The main challenge associated with it is that there is limited employee flexibility. In the current times and age, there are several crucial instances when an individual may be forced to require an adjustment in their initial terms, however if for instance one was working on a contract that had been signed to take a specific time before completion, they may be forced to forfeit their wishes so as to abide by the initial contyract.in certain instances, these may be life changing circumstances that could involve relocating or other pertinent issues. In order to keep your part of the bargain, in several instances, one is forced to abide by their initial agreement with the employer.
Another important challenge noted in the employment law is that in most instances, the employer states that they are mandated to act fairly and honestly with the employee. But in certain instances, this is mostly not practical, for instance when the employee acts dishonestly or does an outright unacceptable act that directly poses a problem to the company. This then may force the employer to act unfairly with the said employee who may then lead to an untimely termination of the contract or other acts not protected by employment law.
The public perception of Raytheon and its influence to the department of defenses is that the public is in fear of the unknown on the freedom to express themselves or equally in contemplation to stand in for the defence of the public domain. This goes further to affect the defence part in most issues arising in court cases. This actually affects even the witness statement or defence witnesses in the Courts of Law in most extreme cases. Generally the public perception is already biased based on the turnout of events. Korbs was perceived to be in a wrong job which is for actually leading to the defence on spending rather than doing what appertains to his specific role at that time.
In as much as one may have constitutional right to talk politics that of holding public office doesn’t come in as of right but as for the service of the citizenry and clarity of information. This is in reference to the fraud or misrepresentation arising out of the Korbs case and we can clearly see the dismissal coming out of the fraud that was meant to take place and the fact that Korbs decides to do the inverse sums up to jeopardy in totality of the anticipated. Both parties fell susceptible to the exposure to the society and out of it came the issues of freedom of speech being looked into analytically.
The four cases that are closer linked to Korbs case are the following: Mc Auliffe v. Mayor of City of New Bedford, 155 mass. 29 N.E 517 (1892). Secondly, Garrity v. New Jersey, 385 U.S (1967). This was actually a contrast in the case of Mc Auliffe case. The third case is that of Board of City Commissioners v Umbehr, 518 US 674 (1996), and lastly that of Novosel v. Nationwide Insurance (1983) in this case it is different and somehow distinguishes the different arenas they exist of which one was a commission and the other omission. Point of departure and distinction from that of Korbs is that he decided not to make any public statement that disagreed with the political agenda that was meant to advance his employers interest.
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