Remedial First Amendment For Conservatives (And Bill Maher)

Oliver Willis

Here, in full, is the first amendment to the U.S. Constitution:

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.

Our constitution explicitly says that you can say whatever you want to say without government interference. What it does not guarantee is any sort of platform to make that speech. The first amendment does not guarantee a right to a radio show, a tv show, a newspaper column, a website, or a stage show. It says that you can say things and the government has no right to squelch that speech.

Why do people not understand this? Conservatives, upset at the growing advertiser boycott of Rush Limbaugh’s hate speech, insist his first amendment rights are being infringed upon. No, they aren’t. Limbaugh is as free as a bird to be as hateful and misogynistic as he wants to be. That said, if people object to his speech and communicate those sentiments to his advertisers and they in turn choose to disassociate themselves from him — nobody’s rights are being infringed.

The market that conservatives claim to love so much, is in fact working.

3 comments

  1. Indeed, Limbaugh still is quite capable of saying anything he wants. I’m just glad that some advertisers will not be helping to pay for it. Limbaugh went so far beyond the bounds of decency that his own words may choke him. I don’t believe the air waves would miss him if he were to leave them. I certainly wouldn’t miss him. I do hope that Ms. Fluke will indeed be able to sue him for defamation, slander and emotional distress. The fact that, as a private citizen who wanted her voice to be heard in testimony to Congress, she was so verbally assaulted on public airwaves in such a vile manner by the de facto head of the Republican Party (if he wasn’t the head- why do all Republicans bow down to him? They say something against him and get slammed by him and everyone else until they apologize.) demonstrates the right will go to any lengths to intimidate and demean women. They truly are waging war on women and women’s health.

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