July 09, 2006

When Free Speech Isn't

I'm wondering when folk on the left will learn that the First Amendment does not mean that free speech and a free press does not have consequences. I have every right to stand up to someone and call them any name I want. I also have the responsibility to accept the consequences for those actions and if the consequence is a punch in the nose, I don't have the right to claim that my freedom of speech is being restricted.

The Dixie Chicks should have figured this out by now. I'm not sure that they have.

The New York Times is claiming that it has a right to publish the SWIFT program even though they had been asked not to because of National Security questions. Yet, the NYTimes felt that it's right to publish (First Amendment Rights) trumped the governments need for secrecy. Too bad, now there will be consequences and those consequences will be the sole responsibility of the NYTimes.

Those Consequences may include charges being filed against the leaker (here's hoping there are), charges filed against the reporter and publisher (again, here's hoping) and significant possibility that al Qaeda and their fellow islamo-fascists have adjusted their money laundering schemes and that good people in Iraq, including our military, in Afghanistan and around the world may die. Hey NYTimes, don't like that. Tough, that is the consequence of your actions perhaps and it rests solely with you for exercising your rights to free speech.

Of course, I'm not the only one thinking so; check out these editorial cartoons:




Posted by GM Roper at July 9, 2006 07:09 AM | TrackBack

"The Dixie Chicks should have figured this out by now. I'm not sure that they have."

As with most liberals, free speech is only free if you agree with them. While the Dixie Chicks are free to say whatever they want, I'm also free to decide not to purchase tickets to their concerts, nor purchase any of their music CD's. Aren't choices nice? If they think free speech should be without consequences, they should yell "FIRE!" in a crowded theatre when there isn't a fire anywhere nearby. I think that particular exercise of free speech results in jail time in most communities.

When I was growing up, school taught us "Civics", which instilled in us that with freedom, there are responsibilities, and actions have consequences. It would seem that isn't taught anymore, or if it is, the Dixie Chicks played hookey that day.

Posted by Vulgorilla at July 9, 2006 09:25 AM

As Gary Burbank says on WLW radio, "Your right to know supersedes your right to exist."

Posted by DADvocate at July 10, 2006 11:11 AM

Unfortunately, some think not only that their abuse of speech should not carry consequences, but that it shouldn't even be criticized. How many times have you criticized what someone said and they shoot back with accusations of trying to silence them? That one always makes me laugh.

As far as the Times and the other papers go, I'm a bit squeamish about hauling the press into court unless it's merely to get them to reveal their sources who have obviously committed a grave error such as revealing state secrets. Then prosecute those bastards to the fullest extent of the law.

Posted by Oyster at July 12, 2006 05:15 AM

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