A Crusader’s View – 8.24.10
Posted: Thursday, August 26, 2010 9:54 am
By: Jeremy Thayer, Guest Columnist
Hello once again! This week’s subject is a very touchy one when it comes to many people and their views and opinions throughout this country.
With the now well-known firestorm of Dr. Laura Schlesinger and her use of the infamous ‘N-word,’ let me begin this column with a question.
Perceived racism and the First Amendment, what do you do?
Some would say that we need to restrict people’s misuse of the English language especially when it comes to racially motivated epitaphs and other so-called ‘hate speech.’
A smaller minority would state that we need bans and restrictions on ill-used public speech. An even smaller handful of radicals would even suggest jail time or execution to those who have a spoken opinion that rubs against the public grain.
I have heard the now viral words of Dr. Laura and have read the many hate-filled comments about her on the Internet.
And I must say, “Whatever happened to free speech?”
It is true that Dr. Laura had used a hated word in modern society, one that I do not use but, I believe that she had the American constitutional right to do so!
Just like the caller she was speaking with, had the equally American constitutional right to use anti-Semitic slurs slandering her Jewish heritage, or using any number of scandalous phrases used in a derogatory light attacking her race, sex or religion if they wanted to.
In any instance, either party using such curse-filled language would have to face the consequences of a public jury of their peers.
As in this case, when two of Dr. Laura’s sponsors broke ties with the show.
Those sponsors, of course, under the same First Amendment, have the right to do so.
To further explain to those who don’t regularly read my column, I am a conservative Christian who hates things like racism, perversity, as well as the moral tactlessness of today’s television, Internet and radio.
But I must say, if we as a nation start banning words because of perceived intent, when will it end? Who would be our linguistic judge and decide what is acceptable? I ask you, where would the line be drawn?
N-words and F-words aside, according to a minority of atheists, the name of Jesus, Lord or God are curse words with vicious intents. Would they eventually ban the “Holy Bible” along with “the satanic verses” citing hate speech?
Also, who among you would raise their hands in desire to burn books? If we start to limit free speech like China because of so-called political correctness to make ‘everyone and every group’ happy, I must say that the city of Martin and its Weldon Library along with UTM’s library and bookstore should soon be a raging 451 Fahrenheit!
In closing, in the dystopian epic ‘1984’ by George Orwell, he depicted a time when all speech was regulated by a totalitarian government.
Even, the dictionary was regularly changed to become what they called ‘newspeak.’ We should always watch what we say especially in a public forum such as a talk show.
But as a Christian and an American, I believe that if we begin to ban free speech in America, America will soon cease to exist.
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