The Supreme Court ruled that a lower court was correct in blocking an anti-pornography law, which has not yet taken effect but is designed to protect web-surfing children from exposure to 'harmful" images. A 5-to-4 majority ruled that blocking the law could unconstitutionally muzzle free speech by fining smut peddlers up to $50,000 for placing material deemed harmful to minors on the Internet and preventing interested adults from seeing and buying it. The ruling returns the case to the lower court to determine whether current technology can permit adults access to such materials while keeping it from children. Meanwhile, attorneys affected by Monday's ruling regarding the unrestricted detention of suspected terrorists, said they'd quickly seek court reviews of their clients' detention. The justices on Monday also struck down a police tactic of questioning criminal suspects before they're read their right to remain silent.
Roughly 5,600 seldom-tapped Individual Ready Reserve troops will be mobilized for duty in Iraq and Afghanistan, the Defense Department is expected to announce Wednesday. Some soldiers will be notified within 30 days of possible deployment this year. Such reservists have completed their voluntary obligation to the armed forces but can be called up for several years after returning to civilian life.
The Environmental Protection Agency ended its six-month public comment period on mercury pollution at power plants. Almost 540,000 comments, a record, were submitted in hopes of influencing the nation's first rules governing the toxic substance. The comments will be used in determining how much pollution reduction is allowable in the next 10 to 15 years.
Hundreds of frequent flyers seeking to bypass extra security inspections lined up Monday to participate in a three-month trial program being offered at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. By agreeing to submit to background checks in advance, the travelers will be able to pass through an express checkpoint for each flight. Plans call for the program to be expanded to airports in Boston, Los Angeles, Houston, and Washington by November, and it eventually could be adopted nationwide.