Monday, April 18, 2016

Can Economics Solve a Nazi Flag Problem?

This from USA Today.

This property owner has a right, under the 1st Amendment, to fly this flag on his/her property.


""Mark Moskowitz, Southeast regional director for the Anti-Defamation League, said that Spurgeon’s decision to display the flag on his property is “disappointing” but there’s nothing to stop him, legally.
“He is protected by the First Amendment,” Moskowitz said. “In America, there is nothing to say you can’t hate. Sometimes people just want attention, and that’s one way to get it.”
Southern Poverty Law Center senior fellow Mark Potok agreed.
“A person who flies the Nazi flag in front of his house is clearly trying to be provocative,” he said. “Certainly, neighbors looking at that flag who are anything but purely white are going to be intimidated. That flag stands for the mass murder of millions of Jews and others worldwide.”

However, if this person's right to free speech causes me significant economic harm do I have a right to be compensated?

What if I own a home next to this person and I want to sell it.

Seems likely/possible that this flag flying next to my house would negatively impact the value of my home and/or take me longer to sell it.  This would be a significant cost to me that I cannot re-coop.

How can economics solve this? Calling Ronald Coase!

A very short Google search turned up nothing of significance in this regard.  Are homeowners just out of luck?

If anyone knows the answer, please let me know.
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