Freedom Of Speech

Freedom of Speech is one of the basic rights of Man – possibly the most important of such rights – but it is also the one such right that the fewest people actually believe in and wholeheartedly support. Statistically speaking, nobody truly wants freedom of speech.

They just want freedom for their speech and for the speech of others to be silenced.

Even the majority of that small number of individuals that seem to support of freedom of speech for those that they disagree with don’t really want their enemies to be able to speak freely. They just fear the possible later consequences to themselves of limiting freedom of speech for others.

No – Free Speech is Unwanted and Attacked

Thus we have: Hate Crime laws; the ongoing attempts to pass Hate Speech laws; lawsuits launched against venues hosting hated speakers; the MSM’s smear campaigns against certain sorts of individuals and groups; attempts to shutdown websites and blogs which are hated by some; and the attempts to exile certain individuals to “spam gulag” on social media sites.

The Biggest Lie

The biggest lie that we tell others – and ourselves, more likely than not – is based on phrases such as, “Criticism isn’t censorship” and “You’re not free from criticism.” Like all effective lies, these are based upon a grain of truth. Our right to speak freely doesn’t mean that we can’t be criticized for our speech and criticism isn’t, prima facie, censorship.

But it is the intent that makes the lie. Vastly more often than not, what people call criticism is just an attempt to silence someone through harassment and brow-beating. Hence, it is an attempt to censor unwanted speech. It’s just one that we can easily lie to others and ourselves about.

Related Reading:

Truth: Philosophy in Transit
Things That Matter: Three Decades of Passions, Pastimes and Politics
Deadly Censorship: Murder, Honor, and Freedom of the Press
Society: The Basics (10th Edition)
Inventing Freedom: How the English-Speaking Peoples Made the Modern World

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2 Responses to “Freedom Of Speech”

  1. Paradigm Says:

    I remember in school we once had a visit by legendary socialist leader Olof Palme. When he was asked critical questions by a pupil and member of the right wing party he just used his superior IQ and experience to completely demolish the kid.

    Palme is still an icon here for standing up for human rights but in real life he was just a simple fascist. He would argue exactly like that – no one is protected from critique.

  2. jonolan Says:

    …Except himself and his fellow travelers of course. ;-)

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