Bellotti and and the Question of Corporate Moral Agency

Friday, January 1st, 1988 at 12:00 am by Jeffrey Nesteruk
Jeffrey Nesteruk, Bellotti and and the Question of Corporate Moral Agency, 1988 Colum. Bus. L. Rev. 683

In First National Bank of Boston v. Bellotti, the United States Supreme Court (the “Court”) established the legal foundation for corporate First Amendment rights. The decision is of fundamental importance and is, this article argues, fundamentally flawed. Its premise – the analysis of corporate speech but not of the corporate speaker – is well-known and has been the subject of comment. But the faulty nature of the premise and its full significance remain, for the most part, unappreciated and unexplained. This is because of the failure to raise explicitly in this connection the question of whether a corporation is a moral agent.

Author Information

Assistant Professor of Business, Law & Public Policy, Michigan State University. B.A., Wesleyan, 1978; M.A., Pennsylvania State, 1981; J.D., Pennsylvania, 1984.