Monday, July 10, 2017

So Long, Mr. Jefferson (And Mr. Madison...): Charlottesville Contra The First Amendment

   Because freedom of speech and assembly are only for people we agree with...
   My favorite points by the activists:
   * We didn't want the Klan in the park, so we decided to block them from entering...
   * ...which is ok because that's us exercising our freedom of speech.
   * It would have all been much more peaceful if the police hadn't been there preventing us from getting at them.
   *  It was the police's bad "energy" that screwed everything up...
   *  ...not to mention all that expensive equipment...
   *  ...which wasn't even used to help us do what we wanted, but used to stop our illegal actions!
 
   There is no doubt whatsoever who is in the right here and who in the wrong. You want to speak against the Klan, speak against the Klan. That's a fine idea. So far, we're on the same side. Use violence and numbers to try to deny the Klan their Constitutional rights...now you and I have a problem, and we're gonna go 'round and 'round...
   Do people not have junior high civics anymore?
   Has it not been pointed out to them that popular speech does not require First Amendment protection? There is an important sense in which the First Amendment isn't actually relevant until we're talking about unpopular opinions.
   IMO one of the most important things about this isn't new at all: contemporary PC activists share many ideas--and one of their central ideas is that free speech is not inherently valuable. Politically incorrect speech should not be protected--in fact, it should be stopped. They're all about the heckler's veto. This isn't about Charlottesville, and it isn't about the Klan. This is about a radical, anti-liberal left that seeks to undermine liberalism, broadly construed. They are not liberals. They are not "allied" with liberals. They are diametrically opposed to liberalism. They are more anti-liberal than almost any contemporary, relatively mainstream conservative. Liberals have to get over their false belief that these people are somehow on our side against conservatives. Conservatives share with us many fundamental principles that the PC left repudiates. The PCs are totalitarians. They are only superficially similar to us--similar in virtue of accidentally agreeing about certain conclusions (e.g.: racism is bad...or, rather: racism against non-whites is bad...) But in terms of their fundamental world-view and central principles, they are opposed to what's central to liberalism--broadly as well as narrowly construed.
   Here's a wee rule of thumb: you start making the goddamn Klan look sympathetic, you're doin' it wrong.

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