Moot Court Teams Address Limits of Free Speech

Moot Court Finalists
Moot Court finalists Struckmeyer and Gray

2Ls Larry Crane-Moscowitz and Alex Vey won the 2015 Bass Berry & Sims Moot Court competition, held Feb. 6 at the law school. Crane-Moscowitz and Vey argued as the petitioners against finalists Travis Gray and Andrew Struckmeyer, who argued for the respondents. All four students are in the Class of 2016.

Larry Crane-Moscowitz
Moot Court winner Larry Crane-Moscowitz (SUSAN ADCOCK)

Presiding over the competition’s final round were Judges Raymond J. Lohier Jr. of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, Stephanie B. Thacker of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and John M. Rogers of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Sixty-nine two-student teams entered the 2014–15 competition, which began in September when the problem was distributed.

Alex Vey
Moot Court Winner Alex Vey (SUSAN ADCOCK)

This year’s problem explored the question of whether public school officials may categorically ban students’ ambiguous, lewd speech when the speech also carries a political message. The case hinged on a school district’s decision to ban stickers that displayed the slogan “Screw Hate, Don’t Discriminate.” Students wore the stickers in support of a local ordinance prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Robin Frazer ’15 (BS’12) was the executive problem editor for the 2014–15 competition, and Jared Davis ’15 and Sean Hastings ’15 were associate problem editors.


Summer 2015 Vanderbilt Law Magazine