Source: The New Democrat
I guess where I would disagree is with the title of the Reason piece where they say, “free speech is in just as much danger from Conservatives.” Implying that free speech is in just as much danger from Conservatives, that it is from Liberals. I argue that free speech is not in danger from either of the center’s of American politics the Center-Right and Center Left, Conservatives and Liberals, but that’s in danger from the fringes of American politics.
Nationalist-Tribalist- Christian-Nationalists on the Far-Right, who are offended by American culture and would like to see big government come in and restrict what we can see on TV and in pop culture generally. And anyone who opposes Donald Trump and his supporters are traitors ( from their perspective ) and therefor not serving of the same free speech rights as people who support Donald Trump and come from the Christian-Right Nationalist wing in and outside of the Republican Party.
And Socialists in some cases democratic but when you look at groups like ANTIFA and other self-described Communists in America, people who believe that right-wingers don’t have free speech rights in America because what they say is offensive and they simply don’t like what the Right ( especially Far-Right ) has to say and therefor should be shut down and silenced whenever they speak. Whenever one of these right-wingers especially Far-Rightist’s like Ann Coulter tries to give a speech, you’ll see Far-Left groups show up and protest her or someone else on the Far-Right and try to shut her down and shut her up. When one of these people writes a book, they’ll protest bookstores and try to boycott them so the author can’t sell their book.
As an actual Liberal, not a Libertarian, or Civil Libertarian or Conservative-Libertarian, but as an actual real-life Liberal who doesn’t want big government trying to manage our personal and economic affairs for us including what we say to each other and doesn’t want a national babysitter or nanny state, but a real Liberal in the real sense as someone who believe in liberal values like liberal democracy and the individual rights that Liberals actually support, I believe in free speech period. Whether it comes to pornography and other forms of adult entertainment that the Christian-Right claims to hate and use to view ( pre-Donald Trump ) as a national threat to our security and morality. Or critical or even offensive speech towards minority groups or anyone else in America that the Far-Right hates.
If you believe in free speech, you believe in free speech. Which is sort of like saying if someone believes in God, they believe in God, but my point is that if you believe in free speech you believe in free speech for everyone and not just people that you tend to agree with. Like that Michael Douglas line from The American President, that America is hard and you have to want it bad because it’s going to come after you. Because it’s a society where you have the right to say and believe whatever you want and those rights will be defended to the hilt. But that people who tend disagree with you have the exact same constitutional First Amendment free speech rights as you do. And free speech is better and America is better when we fight for the free speech rights as others the same way that we fight for our own and the people who we tend to agree with.