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.
- David Macaray: We Can Write Letters to the Editor or We Can Boycott (huffingtonpost.com)
- Pat Buchanan To Hannity: Liberals ‘Use Terms Like Bigot… To Set Up An Inquisition’ (mediaite.com)
- Maher: As Misogynist as Limbaugh and as Free to Be Vile (blogher.com)
- Santorum: My Home-Schooled Kids Will Out-Reason Bill Maher (crooksandliars.com)
- Deplorable Calls for Censorship and Double Standards For Rush Limbaugh (themoderatevoice.com)