Silencing does not make it go away

This is about one of the most important rights guaranteed citizens of the United States of America.  It cannot be negotiated.  If it is to stand, it must stand for all and those who find others’ speech obnoxious can choose not to listen or, even better, in the spirit of the discourse that is at the core of democratic process, engage them with speech.  The urge to censor what is obnoxious is a strong one but not hearing something doesn’t mean that someone is not thinking it or considering how to act upon it.  Citizens of democracies must tolerate the obnoxious, not love them, not even like them.  They must, however respect the fact that rights afforded apply to all and all includes those who are wrong minded, ridiculous, obnoxious, foolish, stupid, idiotic, absurd, even noxious.  Responding to them sensibly is the proper antidote.

From article in USA Today 

“Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights group, broke with major tech companies late Thursday, saying that blocking white supremacist, neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer from staying online sets a dangerous precedent for free speech.

“Protecting free speech is not something we do because we agree with all of the speech that gets protected,” a post on its website reads. “We do it because we believe that no one — not the government and not private commercial enterprises — should decide who gets to speak and who doesn’t.”

By lafered

Retired professor of education concerned with thoughtfulness

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