Posted by Scott Tibbs at 10:00 AM (#)
I said on Twitter last month that "The best poster boys for #FreeSpeech are the most obnoxious ones. That is how we test whether we are truly committed to our ideals." While that is true, many people have a poor understanding of free speech and censorship, and have no idea how to properly use free speech and defend the right to free speech.
Specifically, just because you have the right to free speech does not mean you need to be an obnoxious jerk. One can make a point about why war is bad without posting a meme with pictures of flag-draped coffins and the text "play stupid games - win stupid prizes." There is no need to mock the pain of grieving military families, as Liberty Memes did on Facebook and then defended the meme with an especially pretentious, haughty post about right-wing hypocrisy.
Yes, you have the right to free speech, but the fact that you get an angry reaction does not mean that your "free speech" rights are being violated. When you intentionally troll people to get an angry response, you are not allowed to clutch your pearls when you get the exact response you wanted. It is called "being an adult."
Now, to be fair, Liberty Memes does have a good point about the hypocrisy of many on the right on free speech. Far too many conservatives are willing to grab pitchforks and torches to join a social media lynch mob whenever their sacred cows are skewered. If we believe in free speech and we are truly appalled when Leftists try to ruin someone's life over one silly social media post, then we must believe in free speech for things we find offensive. It is reasonable to point out that hypocrisy, but not every angry reaction to intentional trolling is an attack on free speech.
Note: All posts must be approved by the blog owner before they are visible on the blog.
Below are the rules for commenting on ConservaTibbs.com.
- A reasonable level of civility is expected. While it is expected that controversial political and social issues may generate heated debate, there are common-sense limits of civility that will be enforced.
- This blog is a family-friendly site. Therefore no cursing, profanity, vulgarity, obscenity, etc. will be allowed. This is a zero-tolerance rule and will result in automatic deletion of the offending post.
- Anonymity has greatly coarsened discourse on the Internet, so pseudonyms are discouraged but not forbidden. That said, any direct criticism of a person by name cannot be done anonymously. If you criticize someone, you have to subject yourself to the same level of scrutiny or the comment will be deleted.
- Please keep your comments relevant to the topic of the post.
- All moderation decisions are final. I may post an explanation or I may not, depending on the situation. If you have a question or a concern about a moderation decision, e-mail me privately rather than posting in the comments.
Thank you for your cooperation.