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Law Professor: We Need Grace's Law to Stop Cyberbullies

April 23, 2013
Contact: University Relations
Phone: 410.837.5739

In an op-ed in The Baltimore Sun, University of Baltimore School of Law Professor Michael I. Meyerson calls for the signing of "Grace's Law," a state bill that would prevent someone from repeatedly and maliciously using electronic communications to inflict emotional distress on a minor.

"Both houses of the Maryland legislature have passed, and sent to Gov. Martin O'Malley, a bill crafted to respect First Amendment principles while ensuring that parents will finally be able to protect their children," Meyerson, the school's Wilson H. Elkins Professor of Law and Piper & Marbury Faculty Fellow, writes in the April 21 piece.

"'Grace's Law" does not prevent or penalize the public discussion of matters of public concern. Its scope is limited to minors, the most vulnerable segment of our population. It has long been understood that laws protecting children should be viewed with special solicitude. Moreover, the law would not penalize the random comment or even the occasional insult that is a part of daily life. Rather, the law's coverage is limited to those who deliberately engage in an ongoing course of conduct that is motivated by a proven desire to cause a child to suffer serious emotional distress."

Read the op-ed.