If you believe in freedom of speech, you believe in freedom of speech for views you don’t like. If you’re in favor of freedom of speech you are in favor of freedom of speech precisely for views you despise. Otherwise, you’re not in favor of freedom of speech.
There are two positions you can have on freedom of speech. You can be for it or you can be against it. You are the one who must decide which position you want. Which side are you on?
Think about it Goebbels was in favor of freedom of speech for views he liked, right? So was Stalin. But they were not supporters of free speech. They were part of two of the most repressive regimes in the world. Each regime slaughtered those who did not submit and comply.
How to frame the discussion… if it is allowed
We need to defend the utterly offensive. That includes the people who express utterly offensive views. It isn’t we are defending that person’s views. We are not. What we are doing is defending each and every person’s right to express their views. There is a difference. The difference is crucial. The difference is tolerance.
Think about the left’s position on what they call ‘science deniers’. It is interesting considering the role opinions have played in cancel culture and public discourse of late. Apply the principle for yourself to on COVID or climate change. Cancellation and Censorship are serious issues.
We are at a point where vindictive dirt bags are going out of their way to make Public Servants permanently unemployable. This is getting dangerous. Forbes is pre-emptively denouncing any company which may choose to employ Kayleigh Mcenany. She’s a PR person who worked for someone they do not like.
Need another example? Amazon is blacklisting Parler. They have denied access, through their subsidiary AWS, to the servers necessary for Parler to operate. Why? For no other reason than it is/was one of the few safe harbors remaining for Conservative thought on the social media.
Police power of the government
These examples are high profile. They are not limited or isolated. Worse yet, the Left is once again in charge of the police power of the state. Some serious thought to what we, as Americans, fundamentally believe about speech. Cancellation and Censorship are serious issues.
Obama is famous for saying he wanted to ‘fundamentally transform’ America. He led many to believe he meant to redefine the relationship between the public and their access to economic and medical opportunity. It turns out this is not what he meant at all.
Obama is/was a Leftist. What he did as opposed to what many thought his promise was; was weaponization of the agencies of government his political opposition. He turned agencies loose to use their police power against conservatives. They did not support his policies.
He used IRS, and his abuse of government surveillance powers. He used them against journalists, sitting Senators, and the Republican Presidential nominee. That should not have been a surprise. The man literally launched his campaign in the living room of an unrepentant Weather Underground leader.
Framing today’s issues in historical context
This was someone believing Americans are/should be permanent rival identity groups. We need to lock into an endless battle of grievance and blame. From there, it is a short and easy step to dehumanizing a political rival. It becomes easy justifying the nasty vindictive abuse of governmental police power.
Don’t we have some history somewhere attached to the right to ‘life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness’? America has elected officials who gladly look for ways to personally involve themselves in depriving you. They will go after even your most basic rights to put food on your table. It is getting pretty dark out there.
Are we going to allow speech that makes us uncomfortable? Are we going to allow speech opening up Pandora’s box? How about speech that forces us to face facts or ideas we’d rather not even acknowledge, or grapple with? Cancellation and Censorship are serious issues.
We cannot accept the left’s New Normal for silencing political discourse. We must find a way to block the use of force by the left’s political Big Tech bodyguards. The Big Tech companies are a coalition with the Left. The combination allows them to make avoid direct accusations of ‘state censorship’ of speech though that is what is happening.
Don’t flatter yourself
For anyone choosing that second option, you are reminded who else has taken this approach. Censorship and repression of dissent were the tools of Stalin, Goebbels and Mao. They may have embraced socialist or communist ideology. Their methods were decidedly ‘fascist’.
For all of you Leftists, if you decide to support taking that route, you are not defenders of America from fascism. Don’t flatter yourself. The truth is the opposite; you will be ushering in a new generation of fascism. Black flock or brown shirt; there’s precious little difference.
Leftists are increasingly appearing to be jackboot authoritarians. These same people wonder how such a progressive and educated people as the Germans became fascist. If they had any self awareness they would not bother to ask for the answer is in their mirror.