Can we even talk to each other anymore?

America as a free Speech Zone

Amendment I to the United States Constitution: 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.

I was raised on this worldview from Voltaire:

‘I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it’

So I find this recent news story on CBS quite disturbing! Apparently some college students will not allow speakers of diverse views express those views on campus. After my own totally negative experience dealing with one spoiled student at Regis University, I feel the need to say, how spoiled are these children? And will their inability to tolerate a world that does not coddle them and their way of thinking destroy our democracy?

free speech and our feelingsI am reminded of a phrase that represents to me the ultimate spoiled child worldview: “I want what I want and I want it now!” There is a whole world of individuals who disagree with me and you, but democracy requires that we all get to express ourselves. Even if we find others’ views completely offensive, we need to all have the freedom to hold our own views of the world. Without that right we are no better than places like Russia and China where there is really no freedom at all.

What right do you have to silence the ideas of those who disagree with you? I believe that is called fascism.