An industry whose very identity is wrapped up in the First Amendment wants to rob others of that same right?
Was arguing against Free Speech and Free Expression REALLY the best play you could dream up here? For the paper where, apparently, ‘Democracy Dies in Darkness’, the answer was — strangely — ‘yes’.
Now that they imagine their team to have the cultural upper hand, over those groups and institutions that would have held them back, the free speech argument that was once used to bludgeon the cultural objections of Christians to such important and meaningful ‘art pieces’ as ‘Piss Christ’ are no longer as important to the activist Left.
Perhaps they realize how the pendulum can swing back around and be critical of the NEW cultural power-brokers. With names like Weinstein, Buck, and Epstein floating around, it may be evident that their moral high ground isn’t so solid as they might once have believed.
See the meat of his argument for yourself. The portion in italics is the original opinion article:
When I was a journalist, I loved Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.’s assertion that the Constitution and the First Amendment are not just about protecting “free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought that we hate.”
But as a government official traveling around the world championing the virtues of free speech, I came to see how our First Amendment standard is an outlier. Even the most sophisticated Arab diplomats that I dealt with did not understand why the First Amendment allows someone to burn a Koran. Why, they asked me, would you ever want to protect that?
It’s a fair question. Yes, the First Amendment protects the “thought that we hate,” but it should not protect hateful speech that can cause violence by one group against another. In an age when everyone has a megaphone, that seems like a design flaw
It is important to remember that our First Amendment doesn’t just protect the good guys; our foremost liberty also protects any bad actors who hide behind it to weaken our society. In the weeks leading up to the 2016 election, Russia’s Internet Research Agency planted false stories hoping they would go viral. They did. Russian agents assumed fake identities, promulgated false narratives and spread lies on Twitter and Facebook, all protected by the First Amendment.
…That’s partly because the intellectual underpinning of the First Amendment was engineered for a simpler era. The amendment rests on the notion that the truth will win out in what Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas called “the marketplace of ideas.” This “marketplace” model has a long history going back to 17th-century English intellectual John Milton, but in all that time, no one ever quite explained how good ideas drive out bad ones, how truth triumphs over falsehood.
Milton, an early opponent of censorship, said truth would prevail in a “free and open encounter.” A century later, the framers believed that this marketplace was necessary for people to make informed choices in a democracy. Somehow, magically, truth would emerge. The presumption has always been that the marketplace would offer a level playing field. But in the age of social media, that landscape is neither level nor fair.
There’s a paywall at the original source, here’s a link to original in the following tweet:
— Halloween Name Griswold (@HashtagGriswold) October 29, 2019
The serious issue we are dealing with is that increasingly, even those who STUDIED the First Amendment’s role in their PROFESSION are questioning the value of it.
This comes from a society that has lived securely for so long that it has lost its appreciation for what the Founders meant with the word LIBERTY.
It is NOT a safe term. There is plenty of latitude in a culture that embraces liberty with for wild success and devastating failure. For positive outcomes and negative effects.
This is just as true of speech as it is of the freedom to enter any business enterprise of our choosing.
In Muslim countries, for example, the same limitations on freedom to criticize or even BURN the Koran that he sees value in have also forbidden non-Muslims to question or dissent its theological supremacy.
Indeed, an elected official in Indonesia learned that the hard way. A Christian made the ‘heinous claim’ that it was ok for a Muslim to cast a vote in favor of a Christian. He has served two years in prison for ‘Blasphemy’.
Is THIS the Brave New World this WaPo reporter would have us embrace? Where everyone agrees, and all is kindness and goodness — or else?
Where would that leave the Chappelles of the world?
Your paper fact-checks freaking MEMES. Don’t presume to lecture US on freedom of expression.
Let’s see what Twitter had to say about the STATE having final say over what we can and cannot say:
That you want to put the guy you think would be violation of your hypothetical law in charge of enforcing your hypothetical law demonstrates that you haven’t thought very hard about this. https://t.co/7RYAeHfrIz
— Charles C. W. Cooke (@charlescwcooke) October 29, 2019
I'll agree to let you outlaw hate speech if you agree to let me define hate speechhttps://t.co/jnuG05WUTR
— David Burge (@iowahawkblog) October 29, 2019
As ‘dangerous’ as this freedom he rails against is, that freedom is far less dangerous than taking upon ourselves the yoke of someone ELSE’S ‘moral standards’ and hoping to hell those don’t change with the winds of time.
Here’s the real issue here — he has misdiagnosed the problem. The problem is not our FREEDOM. The problem is that the same morality so many of his profession have been working so hard to undercut is the very morality that keeps such freedom from being misused and abused.
There’s an old quote about ‘like a whale through a net’. He should go look up what it meant.