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Defending Free Speech

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posted on Sep, 27 2012 @ 06:38 PM
I wanted to revisit as a reminder a subject we all discuss from time to time and are aware of, simply because it is a major part of the framework of this country and part of the Constitution of the United States of America, and being so it is constantly under attack and needs to be defended. I am referring to the freedom of speech.

Always under duress, our Bill of Rights is a sacred doctrine that outlines our God given rights. It is Kryptonite for the tyrants of the world, particularly those subject to it's rule here in the U.S., and though many with their normalcy bias do not see that these threats exist here in the land of the free, it is wholly untrue. From many directions our rights and specifically those enshrined within the Constitution are being bombarded or slowly picked apart, and a great lot of us, like a frog sitting in a pot of steadily boiling water, are not conscious of the impending doom such an outcome would create. From corporate powers and their political lackeys to religious bigots, more and more I hear the call to denounce our rights for the sake of security or in order to protect ones precious feelings.

Recently, the United Nations has called for the implementation of international law that would prohibit blasphemy. This, if upheld in the United States, would constantly be used to trump and trample our own rule of law, one which protects those to say and convey how they feel or their personal opinions without the fear of facing persecution. In an increasingly pervasive "politically correct" world, even those who do not mean what they say could potentially be punished simply for a statement in the name of telling a joke or playing devil's advocate. Not to mention the danger of UN law overriding our own legislation, this is such a slippery slope it is an issue that deserves more attention then it currently receives. But we live in a society which treats these sorts of issues as if they are an impossibility, lulling the masses into a false sense of security while minions work and conspire behind the scenes until one day we wake up and our country and our lives are unrecognizable to what they once were.

So how do you defend the right to free speech and what does that entail? The act of defending free speech is not easy. Like so many other things in this world, the most significant aspects are difficult and must be worked at and fought for. Defending free speech quite literally means defending something that you not only disagree with but quite possibly something that will make you angry or upset. It is not about all the powder puff, simple minded, commonplace speech that you agree with. It is about fighting for one's right to say something you are directly and steadfastly against. Of course if you agree with someone there are and never will be any freedom of speech issues, it is when one says something that directly opposes your worldview and is emotionally affecting that you must stand up for their right to say it.

One of my favorite and best examples comes from Noam Chomsky, a brilliant man and one of my heroes. Many years ago a French professor was fired from his job and faced prosecution in front of a judge for his belief and subsequent statements that the Nazi's had never used any death camps during World War II. As you can imagine, the fallout was harsh and besides losing his job and facing legal penalties, he faced backlash from all across the globe. Chomsky came to this man's defense, not because he agreed with what the man said - and as Chomsky put it, anybody with half a brain and minimum research skills could disprove the claim in little time - but because he agreed with the man's right to say it. A normal reaction would have been, "Hm. Well, all the evidence suggests this man is a quack." End of story. Instead, he was practically crucified and so were those who defended his freedom of speech. This illustrates the lengths one must go to defend such a precious human right. We much develop thicker skin and have less of an emotional response to others opinions. A ludicrous claim is nothing more than just that, and can be disproved. It should not be treated as though it is a weapon of mass destruction capable of spreading to great lengths and tearing down every thing that the human race has built up.

Now, it is a complex issue, and there is a thin line between crazy opinions and hate speech, but humans are capable of discernment and we must use our minds if we do not want to lose them. It takes effort, but as I previously stated, all important things are and must be fought for in order to sustain them. So, remember the next time someone hurts your feelings or enrages you with something that they have said, they are just words. And though it is your duty to fight for the truth and should employ every possible resource in disproving and dispelling an insane thought or argument, it is also your duty as a fellow human being to defend those words from being silenced or censored so that all of us, and our future children, can live in a beautifully sane and rational world.

Thanks for your time.

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