Friday, March 22, 2013

Speech and it's consequences

Two incidents in the past few weeks have put the power of speech in the limelight.  I'll be addressing both in this post.

First up, the Greek soccer player who got banned for giving the Nazi salute. 

Some are up in arms because he got a lifetime ban for giving the salute while others understand why he got banned.  Me, I'm on the side of him getting banned for life because no matter what he says, he knew damn well what that gesture meant, no one is stupid enough to not know, especially someone from a country that was occupied by Nazis in the second world war.  Americans who scream that his free speech is being violated are just plain wrong and misguided.  Their saying this presupposes that Greece has the same laws that protect speech that the USA has, but in reality it doesn't.  And Greece suffered under the Nazis, just like other European nations that ban this gesture and other displays that harken back to the days of Nazism.  This idiot broke the law and now he's going to have to pay the consequences. 

Next up is Michelle Shocked. 

She used her freedom of speech to say hateful and homophobic things and now others are using their free speech to denounce her.  And like most Christian bigots, she's now claiming that she was quoted out of context.  Bullshit.  I heard the audio of her rant and she says explicitly that the hate she spews she agrees with.  She wants us all to give her a break because she said what she did out of love, once again, bullshit. You don't get a break for your support of denying your fellow citizens the same rights you enjoy.  And she claims that preachers will be forced at gun point to marry gay folks, and of course she's wrong again because ministers have the freedom to marry or to not marry anyone they choose, for instance some ministers still to this day refuse to marry interracial couples. 

These two cases should serve to remind people that you can say what you like but there can and will be consequences.  You can make all the gestures you like but if they run a foul of the law of the land, then you're going to pay the price.  Speech has consequences.  And sometimes they are not to the speakers liking.

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