Freedom of Speech is not Freedom From Consequences

If you tend to follow comments on political stories and posts you’ll be familiar with the concern expressed by some that freedom of speech is under attack
They complain bitterly that they do not feel they can express their views without being attacked by people with opposing views.

Free Speech (or Expression) is protected from government prosecution or persecution. In some jurisdictions, like here in Canada, there are reasonable limitations on this freedom…in that expression inciting hatred and violence against an identifiable group or person is not protected.

That’s not what I want to talk about here.

There seems to be a mindset among some (mostly alt-right folk) that they should be allowed to say whatever they want without consequence…even the consequence of having someone question your assertions, and sometimes call you unpleasant names, like xenophobe, or racist.

There are no such protections under law.

In other words, if you express an opinion that’s unpopular, expect there to be some fallout.

Now I’m sure that many on the Left are reading this and nodding your heads, but now I’m going to reverse that coin.

Many post-secondary institutions have banned talks by right wing personalities for a variety of reasons.

When these talks to go forward they are often disrupted by left wing groups with air horns and even pulling fire alarms.
Seriously…pulling a fire alarm in a crowded auditorium….anyone doing this is an idiot and should be thrown in prison!
But I digress….

The argument for to justify these protests is that the speakers are spreading messages of intolerance and hate.

I don’t disagree with that. However I would put to you that in not allowing these people to speak you are in fact lending them strength. Those who came to listen will see the protests and perhaps think that there must be some validity to the speaker’s points if those opposed don’t want them being said. So they run to Youtube and watch anyway.

I would let them speak. Learn their talking points, then take them and debunk them. Do it loudly, and mockingly. Show the masses that they are not to be taken seriously by turning their own message against them.

Otherwise you risk the undecided seeing you as nothing more than a zealot whose belief in your own ideology is so weak that you can’t bear to hear an opposing opinion.

We have to keep in mind that Freedom of Speech is a double edged sword.

Someone actually came up with this bureaucratic nonsense!

There’s no shortage of bureaucratic nonsense out there, especially when dealing with governments.

I’m writing today with one particular mind-boggling piece of bureaucratic bullshit in mind and that is the proof of citizenship requirements for a Canadian Passport.

If you read the link that you can use an expired passport, provided that it has been expired for less than a year. If you don’t have that (mine expired several years ago), you can use your birth certificate (I lost mine)

So I guess that once a passport’s been expired for more than a year it becomes easier to forge?? Seriously, if I could forge an expired passport, how much harder would it be to forge one that’s NOT expired?!

But no, no….I can use this card from the 60’s that doesn’t have a picture, or anything other than my name and date of birth on it. Honestly, I could probably forge that with a scanner and Photoshop and I’m not artistically inclined.

Of course its fairly straightforward getting a birth certificate, unless you get some detail of your parents wrong….but that’s a whole other story.

On F**king Profanity…

If there’s one indication as to how sensitive some people are, its in how we sometimes censor profanity.

I’m certain there are people who read the headline of this post and thought, “Oh thank god he didn’t spell out fucking!”

I’m amazed the the power of profanity can be completely obliterated by substituting a few letters with symbols, or a bleep, or even changing the word entirely to something similar. People know what you’re saying, but the fact that you didn’t actually say, or type it makes it somehow less offensive.

I honestly don’t understand that. The offensive word is out there, everyone knows it, but the fact that its eluded to is somehow okay to people whose sensitivities would be ruffled if the word was fully presented!

Now, that being said there are people who get offended by substitutions. I had some guy have a complete and total meltdown because I used the term mother-fracker on a FB post he was tagged in. (it wasn’t an insult post, just something humorous that happened in an improv class).
So I guess that’s okay if you’re going to be offended by profanity that you show the same level of outrage at substitutions as you do to the actual profanity.

Now that I’ve got that off my chest, I want to move on to the use of profanity in general.

There are people who feel that profanity is un-necessary. My mother has often said that profanity is for the weak….or something like that.

Much as I love my mother, I also love science. The latter tells us that people who use profanity tend to be smarter, healthier, more honest, and happier.
Don’t believe me…here’s a link! (sorry mom!)

Anyone who has spent any time with me know that I can, at times, be quite profane. That’s a fancy way of saying that I swear a lot. I admit it, I sometimes use f-bombs as punctuation. This basically means that according to science that I’m a fricking genius!!

I’ll admit that there are a lot of times when profanity really isn’t necessary to get a point across. But there are times when, no matter how large one’s vocabulary, nothing else suffices for emphasis.

For instance, lets say someone comes up with the idea of separating children from their parents simply because they sought asylum in this completely made up country called Southofcanada.

One could say that this idea is completely idiotic. Sure, kinda gets the point across, but how does that compare to:

That idea is completely FUCKING idiotic and the motherfucker who came up with it should have their fucking gonads locked in a vice in a burning building.

So I guess in closing I’ll put it out there if people swore more we’d be a lot smarter, healthier and happier!