Opinion: Free Speech Rears Its’ Ugly Head

by Pete Lucas, a contributing author:

Don’t you hate it when people vehemently disagree with you? Don’t you wish they’d just shut up?

Fred Phelps and his gay-bashing homies come to mind immediately. Those people are despicable morons who are undoubtedly all closeted gays themselves. Whenever I see him I just want him to shut up and go away. Society doesn’t like his message, and doesn’t like being subjected to it.

But the ACLU defends him. What the…?

Fred may be a hopeless moron, but it would be completely un-American to silence him. This country was founded on freedom (I thought) and that freedom includes LOUDLY stating your opinion, no matter how obnoxious, poorly thought-out, socially unacceptable, etc. the opinion happens to be.

The first group in modern times to have their freedom of speech infringed upon was anti-abortion protesters. Apparently it made people uncomfortable to see pictures of aborted babies before walking into a clinic to abort their babies. Politicians with the help of Planned Parenthood got ordinances and legislation passed to prevent abortion protesters from standing within 500 miles of a clinic (I’m rounding…).

But is that what WE, as Americans REALLY WANT?

Do we want one group of people to be able to shut up another group of people just because they’re the majority and they can?

That’s why for the past 8 years I stood by and listened as people bashed Bush, calling him a terrorist, traitor, baby-killer, racist, etc. I have listened to kooks like Fred Phelps rant and gay-bash. I have watched every major news outlet blatantly side with one candidate over another in political elections.

And you know what, I didn’t like it. But the last thing I would EVER want is to silence them.

Yes, I’d like to change their minds about things, but that’s really not likely. I’d like them to choose to shut up and/or die, but that’s also not likely. So my alternatives are to villainize people for having an unpopular opinion and try to silence them, or I can point out the flaws in their argument and hope the general public is smart enough to separate the theatrics from the real content of the argument.

This health care bill that congress and Obama are trying to shove down our throats through raw partisan power and a massive PR campaign is, plainly put, the worst piece of legislation to ever have a serious shot at passing. I have about 100 reasons why, but if you don’t know by now that I’m a Libertarian then you haven’t been paying attention to my previous articles.

People are genuinely upset about this bill. Even if “big pharm” IS stirring people up about this issue, that doesn’t de-legitimize what the people are doing and saying. Remember, the “health care industry” as the politicians like to call it employs zillions of REGULAR Americans… not just doctors and nurses. I help manage a company that manufactures medical devices. I have a REAL LIFE stake in the implications of a government takeover of this sector. So do the millions of other Americans who work in insurance, medical offices, medical suppliers, medical manufacturers, medical research, etc. Not just doctors and nurses… secretaries, support staff, analysts, accountants, machinists, etc. etc. etc.

That doesn’t even begin to take into account the millions of small businesses that will be subject to higher taxes, which will inevitably result in ENTRY LEVEL workers (you know… the ones this bill is supposed to help) being laid off. Duh.

“Big Pharm” and “Big Insurance” aren’t just some big monolithic corporations… they are collections of millions of US!

Kids, it’s time to grow up. This is America. In America, you work hard, you pay your own way, and you don’t rely on other people or the government to bail you out. Seriously. Grow up. There’s NO SUCH THING as a FREE LUNCH.

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