The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Whose Right?

My previous post spoke about my curiosity and subtly hoped my readers also had that penchant.

I then went to another blog (by clicking on "Next Blog" at the top of the page) and found a rant about a movement having their freedom of speech suppressed. Since I am a strong advocate of free speech, I read the post. I may have misunderstood it because it seemed to jump all over the place before revealing a total of two states proposing laws to limit some speech (notably by pro-Palestinian groups, the article claims) and a university in Boston (Northeastern University in Boston... though the location was not mentioned) banning a certain group for a year.

It also revealed the New York law failed early on but the Maryland bill was not quashed [yet].

When I was a teen and into my twenties, I had a dislike for the ACLU. It was based on peer comments and newspaper articles and editorials. And then I read about the ACLU's defense of the American Nazi Party for a march in Skokie, IL.

It's important to note that many residents of Skokie are Jewish and that, at the time, many were survivors of Germany's Nazi concentration and death camps. Still, the ACLU chose to fight for the right of the National Socialist Party of America to march in that town. At first, my reaction was "What the Hell are they doing?? This group is offensive to those people and to allow them to march would be highly offensive and wrong." Then I began to consider what Freedom of Speech is all about. It changed my view of the ACLU and it changed, forever, my position on Freedom of Speech and the Constitution.

In the end, the Nazis did not march, though they won the right to.

I began to formulate, in my mind, the proper response to the march (if it took place). One response would be for anyone who felt offended, but who happened to be on the streets used that day, to turn their backs on the marching Nazis. The other response would be to laugh and point at the marchers. Laughter is infectious and I thought others would join in once it started.

You see, true Freedom of Speech means hearing voices at times that you would rather not hear. It means we, as individuals, have the ability to discern right and wrong and the government does not have the right to dictate it.

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