Does Freedom Of Speech Need To Be Redefined

By including Freedom of Speech in the First Amendment, our brilliant forefathers recognized the importance of a person’s right to express their thoughts without rebuke. This freedom was essential at a time when there was so much angst about the British government, emotions were high, and people were stimulated by each other’s actions to speak their minds. Though our forefathers were some of the most incredible thinkers, they could not see hundreds of years into the future and write a law covering the magnitude of changes in how we communicate. The spoken and written words were the only means of communication in the 1700s, and nobody envisioned mass media or the internet. There are so many ways that speech can be twisted and manipulated today. There are also many more ways that people can be vilified and canceled in retaliation for speaking their minds. It is all of these new dynamics that led me to my belief that the First Amendment needs an edit.

I was shocked, though I should not have been, that a petition drive to have Harrison Butker removed from the Kansas City Chiefs is closing in on 100,000 signatures. A tremendous number of close-minded individuals want someone to lose their career because they have the courage to express their thoughts and beliefs in a commencement speech. I will guarantee that only a minute fraction of those signers took the time to listen to the entire speech, but it probably would not change their minds or actions. These people are stirred by the plethora of like-minded celebrities and talking heads who look for a moment of attention by criticizing a person who did nothing but speak his mind. These critics have as much right as Harrison Butker to express their views but no right to call for retaliation against Butker for his. Unfortunately, that is where we have come to, as discussion and debate have been replaced by attacks and cancellations. No way our forefathers saw these times coming.

Another example of this new culture is Enes Kanter Freedom. Freedom is originally from Turkey and came to America to pursue a basketball career. Freedom was very good at his craft and was playing for the Boston Celtics when his career was cut short. The NBA blackballed him for having the courage to speak out about the human rights violations of the Chinese government and the hypocrisy of the NBA’s involvement with China. Freedom has become a vocal opponent of China, Turkey, and other similar regimes and has developed a public speaking career. Still, he is denied the opportunity to play the game he loves because of his beliefs.

In the last five years, we have had the Summer of Love and the Black Lives Matter Movement; many people canceled for their criticism of the COVID vaccine, the successful yet divisive Trump Presidency, the lying and deceitful Biden Presidency, and the anti-Israel campus unrest of 2024. Freedom of Speech protects all, but none are healthy for the country or society.

Freedom of Speech is no longer the protection of one’s thoughts but from the retaliation to those thoughts. Still, those words of response are also protected. Do not get me wrong. I am not suggesting that we have government intervention to decide what is and is not protected, but somebody has to intervene when it comes to outright falsehoods or hurtful speech. Who that would be and when is open for debate. As I said, rethinking Freedom of Speech would be a complex undertaking, but until we find someone with the brilliance of our forefathers to accept the challenge, we will continue to watch it degenerate.

Content syndicated from Conservative View from New Hampshire with permission

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Ray Cardello

As a lifelong Conservative and resident of New Hampshire, Ray Cardello is positioned to speak with common sense about the happenings of the nation and the region. Conservative View from New Hampshire is Ray’s second blog and podcast effort in 20 years. He has published over 1,000 articles since January 2021, is syndicated on 15 websites, and is published on over 65 sites. Ray is passionate about his writing and sees the Internet as the only way for Conservatives to compete with the mainstream media. Ray claims there will be much to discuss as we move forward and his blog will not focus strictly on Washington but will also delve into State and Local issues as well. There is so much going on and so little factual sources of information to rely on.

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