Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Public and Private Freedom of Speech

Having just had a discussion about the one DJ that was fired for opining that all Muslims are terrorists, the issue of freedom of speech came up. Regardless of the stupidity of such a blanket statement, did the guy have a right to say it?

Well he said it, and it's quite clearly too late to take it back, but that little exercise came at the cost of his job.

Lest we forget, the First Amendment reads:
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.

So quite clearly the concept of freedom of speech and the actually lawful basis for it are two distinct concepts. One covers what the government (congress) can't do, and one... is an ideal, subject to the whims of the proprietor/administrator of the venue for exercise thereof.

For instance, if the comments sections had a comment I didn't like (e.g., spam), aren't I free to remove it?

But while we're on it, I'm glad that DJ got canned. What an asinine, small-minded thing to say.

No comments: