365 Things I Believe: Freedom to offend

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
~ The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

The Internet has escalated the lack of civil discourse. It’s easy to be obnoxious when you’re hiding behind a keyboard. You have a right to free speech. I have a right to free speech. What neither of us has is a right to not be offended.

The self-proclaimed politically correct among us will say that we all must get along and that we all need to co-exist (clever, but misleading, bumper sticker included. We all do have to act in a civil manner. But that doesn’t mean I can’t express my opinion or you can’t express yours.

This week, a radical activist (about whom we still don’t know all the facts) shot a security guard at the offices of the Family Research Council. A group mislabled by the left as a “hate group.”

It was the shooter’s right to disagree. But not with a gun.

Don’t like what Chick-fil-A says? Don’t eat there. Don’t like what Starbucks says? Don’t eat there.

But freedom means you can’t shut down what either of them wants to say. Even if you don’t like it.

I believe this.

365 Things I Believe is a revisioning of a year long web project. I initially launched the blog 365 Things I Believe because I think there are important things I have to say. There are eternal truths that are non-debatable, although I realize they’re not universally accepted.

So for a year I did a daily post of one thing I believe to be an indisputable truth. I’m relaunching here at The Write Side of My Brain and will continue through the next year to re-post (mostly) from the original project.

This time graphics and commentary are included. You can buy today’s print here. And, by the end of a year, if not sooner, you’ll be able to purchase the entire series in ebook format.

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