Speaking Freely

There’s no shortage of voices waiting and wanting to be heard. Information begs to be read and televised. Digital dialogs expand our daily lives beyond what’s immediate. It’s a steady storm of observations and opinions battering our senses. No matter how hard we try, we give into consumption. It’s difficult to avoid. Local calamities portrayed on the evening news hook us as we pass by a TV. But they’re just a prelude to the lies, accusations, and venomous innuendos dished out by voices on the web. Saturation comes quick.

In his article, Why I’ll Defend Anyone Trump Sues for Speaking Freely, Ted Boutrous points out that New York Times v. Sullivan establishes that modern First Amendment law is founded on “a profound national commitment to the principle that debate on public issues should be uninhibited, robust, and wide-open, and that it may well include vehement, caustic, and sometimes unpleasantly sharp attacks on government and public officials.”

As my wife’s T-shirt proclaims, it’s an upside down world. We’re being hit by abrupt and polarizing change. As always, politicians want to tell us what to think. As always, which version of truth you hear tends to be what you believe?  Yahoo knows we’re suckers for the five new ways to get rich, along with the seven ways to lasting happiness. Most of us can’t avoid listening to the advice.

It’s good news that we have a glut of free speech. But the best advice that I’ve heard recently is – “Resist.” I apply it to anything that threatens my rights and beliefs.

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