With Freedom of Speech comes Responsibility
A lot has been said in recent weeks about the fact that we have freedom of speech and expression here in the U.S as well as to some degree in the west. Very little has been said about the Responsibility that comes with those rights. Just because you can say something does not mean it should be said. The right to free speech though goes both ways, if you want to say whatever you must, also then allow others to say what they think. Free speech is not just a one way street.
This notion that we have, that we can say whatever we want and not be in any way, shape or form responsible for what may happen as a result is mind boggling to me, I don’t mean that every spoken word should be subject to criminal charges, but in some cases, one can and should be charged for “inciting a riot”. For every action and every spoken word, there is an equal and opposite reaction for good or bad that is the way these things work.
When you choose to make fun of a person, place or religion there may in fact be unintended or intended consequences for you actions, and when those consequences result in death or damage of property, understand that those of us that understand that with that right also comes the responsibility not to just shoot our mouth off because we can, and will lay at your feet the blame for the actions taken as a result of your words.
Do I condone violence of any kind? ABSOLUTELY NOT, no more then I condone deliberately adding fuel to an already raging fire. No, I do not think we should enact blasphemy laws here, but I do think there is a time and place for all speech.
It’s time to have a real conversation about RESPECT for others. If you want respect for your values and culture and religion then you must likewise respect others.
So again, I ask just because we can say whatever we want, should we?
- Contemplation: The Importance and Limits of Free Speech (generallordisimo.com)
- No. We should not respect other people’s beliefs (skydancingblog.com)