Saturday, January 29, 2005

Who's Guarding the Free?

Eskimo left a comment on one of my posts, where I linked to a piece by Bill Keezer about denying freedom of speech to the American Nazi Party. Here is the text of his comment:
I know its a slippery slope but I have issues with granting 'free speech' to organizations like the Nazi Party or the Communist Party for that matter. I think there is a distinct difference in stifling 'dissent' of people who may simply disagree with public or foreign policy such as the anti-war protestors. On the other hand, the nazis, communists or radical jihadists is not simply protesting policy but calling for the overthrow of the democratic form of government we enjoy and the establishment of a tyranny. Fact is, the American Bund was pretty much put out of business during WW2 so why we should allow them to reorganize today is somewhat beyond me.
Honestly, part of me agrees with Eskimo. It is one thing to disagree, it is another to plan treason, mutiny, rioting, etc. And it is a very slippery slope, though many of us are more than willing to try out our balance on slope. Here is why I can't agree with you, my friend. Why? Why does anyone need to worry about censoring TV, movies, games, music? Why do we need to worry about groups that would get together to try to plan mutiny? Could it be because we have become complacent? We don't want to worry about things like this, so just silence these idiots? Here is what I think has happened. We have let our government control our lives, making our lives so easy, that don't have to worry about difficulty or inappropriate influences. Big Daddy Government has a regulating board or department for everything. And how convenient is that? We don't need to worry about what movies or games we buy our kids - we can just look at the rating. We don't have to worry about what they see on TV (go with me on this and forget J. Jackson for just a second) because as long as it is before 9pm, it is prime time and (supposedly) family friendly. Kids on the computer? Just get a 'Net Nanny, and your problems are solved. The problem is overtaking us, and we need to wake up and observe the "1984" phenomena that is creeping in. We shouldn't have to worry about idiots like the American Nazi Party, the American Communists, or any other groups against democracy. Because we should be guarding our freedoms vigilantly. The fringe-wackos who would try to attack should never have a chance of doing much more than raising their voice before they are drown out by the sound of those who believe in this country and her liberty. However, while today many fight for the freedom of speech for our fringe-wackos, they deny it to the rest of us in the form of campaign finance reform, refusal to allow the word of God to be spoken, the destruction and removal of religious and social memorials, terming things as "hate speech...." I can't agree with you, Eskimo. I don't want to silence even the most barbarous of the groups. We will get too comfortable if we start silencing people, and when they come to silence us, we will wonder what happened. Let the American Nazi Party have their clean highway, and the sign that acknowledges their contribution. Let them have their freedom of speech. Stop being comfortable, and start being alert - and then we'll never have to worry over anyone's speech again. Freedom's voice will be louder.