Category: "Free Speech"

American Trigger Warning

American Trigger Warning

I shared with my mom this conversation regarding Canada's Bill C-116. A conversation on the nature of free speech opened with a trigger warning. If I weren't already sensitized to the issue, I would have been appalled. I thank our G-d that we aren't here yet in the United States, but we're moving in this direction:

Harassment motivated by gender is a form of discrimination.…
For example, refusal to use a transgender employee’s preferred name, pronoun, or title may constitute unlawful gender-based harassment.

New York City Gender Identity/Gender Expression: Legal Enforcement Guidance Leaving aside the obvious problems—like a man deciding he's a woman to walk into a woman's shelter or locker room—I think this runs up against our First Amendment rights to free speech:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

This amendment is based on the premise that the free expression of our ideas, and the give and take that follow therefrom, will give us an opportunity to challenge ourselves, to examine our thoughts and those of others, and come to a better question, maybe even approach a truth, although yours and mine might be completely different.

Full story »

Memorial Day 2017

I'm almost done reading Mr. Tuvia Tenenbom's rather depressing book The Lies They Tell. (Welcome to the real America,
a place you call home but don't yet know!
) One of his themes is that Americans are afraid.

And it's not that we are afraid of the rest of the world. We are afraid of ourselves. In the land that celebrates free speech, people are afraid to speak their mind, we don't want to tell you who we voted for, or what we really think for fear of how it will look.

Full story »

Angry Losers

This week, I am inspired to write by Pat Condell, and his video Hello Angry Losers. His point is that the left seems quite ready to celebrate the democratic process when it wins, and equally ready to angrily dismiss it when it loses, to wit branding those who supported the Brexit as racist little Englanders, as idiots who voted against their own interests.

In the US, this phenomenon shows up with those seeking to Impeach Donald Trump Now, a website registered within days of President Trump's election. This movement is sponsored by such organizations as Free Speech for People.org.

I find it incredible that those who seemingly celebrate free speech seem so against it when the speech goes against their own beliefs, in this case challenged by the beliefs of Trump supporters, and their speech in selecting him.

And it may be that many of Trump people are low-information voters, who voted more on emotion than knowledge. This didn't seem to bother anyone when President Obama was elected. So why should it now?

President Trump speaks for a segment of our country that simply does not believe America is living into its potential. Rather than examining and seeking to ameliorate the concerns of the people Mr. Trump speaks for, certain elements paint their concerns as trivial. For these elements, the people of Impeach Trump Now, this is flyover country. These are the people who cling to their guns and religion, to borrow a phrase.

Maybe it is that Trump's people had not been heard. Now it's their turn to speak. And rather than show themselves as true liberals, people who understand that others may think differently, that others may have valid concerns that do not echo their own, the people at Free Speech for People enter new echo chambers to convince themselves that they are right as they try to bring down the man who just happens to speak in a different voice.

They don't need to celebrate Trump, but if, instead of being Angry Losers, they chose to celebrate our process, and use our vast resources to make a difference for all Americans - and not by reeducating them in “correct thinking” - we'd all be in a better place.