September 27, 2011
Freedom of speech?
In a string of decisions, the U.S. Supreme Court has come out as the great defender of free speech for those who can afford to buy it: corporations, political action committees and right-wing extremists who argue there are no acceptable limits on political speech. Well, we could argue all day about those decisions, discuss the Fairness Doctrine, public financing of campaigns...but we had better figure out how "free' is free? Can 10 of us march on Wall Street, or do we need permission from Wall Street? If 10 becomes 20 and 20 becomes 100 are the police protecting free speech when they order us to go home and then spray pepper gas at us? Can the police believe that they can break up any demonstration, peaceful or not? Provoked or not?
Are we "free" knowing that cameras are watching us in every conceivable place? When GPS systems tell authorities where we are going in our cars? When NSA and CIA can and apparently do filter our email and listen to our phone calls?
Read the accounts of the Wall street protesters in the NY Times: "Protesters were corralled by police officers ...forcibly arrested some..." And read this: "If you take a street for a parade or protest without a permit you are subject to arrest." OK, what if permit is denied? Can you stand and sing "Solidarity Forever" at the Stock Exchange, or is that tantamount to terrorism? The wing nuts would say not to worry you can buy time on NBC to make your point in a 30-second spot. Can't afford it? Tough! Your thoughts, please.
How do we know Chris Christie is not our candidate? Republicans pushing him to run include the Koch Boys, and right-wingers close to the Manhattan Institute. One said that he is "smart, courageous a straight talker, kind of an anti-politician." She forgot to add bully, union buster, and nasty boor who takes a state plane to see his son play baseball.
Koch, Koch, Koch=Christie.
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You mean the liberal/democratic party controled city of NY has all kinds of anti free speech red tape? Never would have guessed that. By the way it was a state owned helicoper Christie took to his sons ball game. How much did we the taxpayer's pay for the Airforce one NY city photo? and Mr and Mrs O's date night to NY?
-SAW | waukesha wi | September 27, 2011
Free speech is only free if you're in the middle of the woods speaking to no one. If you want your voice heard by the public it is no longer free even even standing in a public place as shown by the treatment of the protestors on Wall Street. You risk bodily harm and incarceration for speaking words those in charge do not wish the general public to hear.
It is a return to the days of yesterday when both police and military defended property while trampling on the rights of people to speak.
-Richard Kanak | Cherry Valley, Illinois | September 27, 2011
For now, the only true freedom we all enjoy is freedom of thought. Open your mouth and be prepared for that thought to be curtailed.
-Pietr Haikuu | Hurley, Wisc. | September 27, 2011
There is a video that apparently shows a NY cop pepper spraying demonstrators: http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/25/video-appears-to-show-protesters-being-pepper-sprayed/
The issue in NYC goes beyond freedom of speech. Who set back the clock to the 19th century? We are becoming that dreaded police state. This is not a good sign.
-Maria Caliente | Middleton, Wisconsin | September 27, 2011