Source:The New Democrat
“Today, FINALLY, Craig is going to talk about Free Speech! Now, free speech is so important because it not only allows you to critique the government, but it also protects you from the government. But it’s essential to remember that not ALL speech is protected equally under the First Amendment, and just because you have a right to free speech doesn’t mean your employer, for instance, can’t fire you for something you say (unless your work for the government and then things get a bit more complicated). So we’ll take a look at a couple significant Supreme Court cases that have gotten us to our current definition of free speech, and we’ll also discuss some of the more controversial aspects of free speech – like hate speech.”
“The First Amendment (Amendment I) to the United States Constitution prevents the government from making laws which respect an establishment of religion, prohibit the free exercise of religion, or abridge the freedom of speech, the freedom of the press, the right to peaceably assemble, or the right to petition the government for redress of grievances. It was adopted on December 15, 1791, as one of the ten amendments that constitute the Bill of Rights.”
When it comes to the U.S. Constitution and the amendments to it and our Bill of Rights, I’m not an absolutist on anything, but neither is the U.S. Constitution and our Founding Fathers. ( Our Founding Liberals ) We have a right to self-defense in America which even includes firearms, but we don’t have a right to open fire and fire randomly at people at a church, or restaurant, or some other public place where a lot of people could be there.
When it comes to the First Amendment: we have a right to believe whatever we want too and for the most part even have the right to say whatever we want to, but we can’t order for someone to be beat up or killed. We can believe in and practice any religion that we want, or no religion at all, but we can’t kill or physically attack other people or places in the same of our religion.
When it comes to free speech, I’m not an absolutist, but as a Liberal who of course believes in liberal democracy I guess you can call me a fundamentalist. ( And this is coming from an Agnostic ) It’s not the job of government or anyone else really to tell people what they can believe and how they should think. It’s the job of government and ourselves as individuals to protect our physical safety and economic security, but not our feelings.
Liberal democracy, is not easy and you really have to want it to be able to live with it, because it comes with a lot of rights and responsibilities. You have the ability to say whatever you want and believe in it ( short of inciting violence, falsely accusing people, or false advertising ) but so does everyone else including people you don’t like, tend to disagree with, or even hate what they have to say. But then you have to the First Amendment right to make the case for why the people you disagree with are simply wrong and then they can respond to you. And maybe you can have a great debate about what you believe and why you oppose what you oppose.
That’s called liberal democracy, free speech, and just one thing that has always made America great and exceptional. And as long as we stand by and up for our liberal democratic values like free speech, no one will ever have to try to make America great again, because we’ll always be great and exceptional.