Thursday, March 12, 2015

Preserving the Freedom of Speech.

The March on Washington -- August 28, 1963

Racists are real assholes.

I have no tolerance for bigots -- racists in particular. The color of a person's skin serves no importance. Skin color is merely a reflection of genetic heritage and where our ancestors originated from on this planet. We're all from one race - the HUMAN race.

All this being said, if you want to say some really horrible crap about a certain color of people, then that is your right. The First Amendment, which protects our right to freedom of speech, allows for all American citizens to say what they want.

What does all of this have to do with each other?

My brother (thanks James) recently highlighted a case where a group of fraternity brothers at the University of Oklahoma were caught on video singing a racially charged song of hate. They repeatedly used the word "nigger" in a manner that was not only insensitive, but spiteful.

And no, I do not use the term "n-word". To do so is ridiculous. We're all adults here. You can plainly see that I'm not employing the word "nigger" at someone. It's merely for context. Saying "n-word" is not only childish, but it's disrespectful to the proud men and women whom fought against its common everyday use. You can't deny the past with a linguistic loophole. We must never forget.

You can watch the racist chant here:

Back to my point...

The University of Oklahoma suspended the involved fraternity. The institution also expelled two of the students caught on camera singing their racist song. Here's my problem...

Those students caught on camera absolutely deserve all the negative attention they're receiving. What they did was horrendous and without merit. But, what they said is protected by the First Amendment, no matter how repulsive. The lesson here is simple.

To protect the freedom of speech for all citizens, you must also protect all types of speech.

You can't pick and choose which words can be spoken and which can not. If you do, then you upend the very foundation of the First Amendment. No matter what crap those University of Oklahoma students said, they should not have been expelled from campus. If anything, they should have had the opportunity to return to class and face the ire of their fellow students. I'd bet good money that they would have soon left anyway.

To preserve the freedom of speech for you and I, those same racists must be allowed to say what they want. Otherwise, how long will it be before we'll be censored for our own words -- whether hateful, compassionate or otherwise?

Also, look at it this way. Letting the racists spew their indignant philosophy makes them all the more easy to pinpoint! When a racist opens their mouth, it makes him or her pretty darn easy to spot.

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