Kevin Standlee (kevin_standlee) wrote,
Kevin Standlee

Free Speech Has Consequences

I don't have time to go into the full story now, but see Cheryl's post and follow-up about some hateful, hurtful things a couple of "shock jocks" in Sacramento said and the whirlwind they're reaping because of it. Hooray for the advertisers who agree that the idiots on that radio show are advocating violence toward children who don't fit into their narrow little good-old-days-that-never-really-existed gender role assignments. Those advertisers are withdrawing their advertising from the radio station in question. Some of the people commenting have been yelling "that's sensorship!" (sic) No, it's not. Nor is it is violating "freedom of speech." Those idiots have the right to express stupid, prejudiced, hateful opinions. But the government isn't trying to shut them up (that would indeed be censorship, and I'd object to it even though I detest what the shock-jocks said). The people who were (indirectly) paying their salaries decided that they didn't want to fund them. Those businesses are invoking their own rights to spend their money where they choose.

Lots of people seem to think that "free speech" means "I have the right to say anything at all, no matter how awful or offensive, without any consequences whatsoever." The first part of that sentence may be true, but the second -- the part about consequences -- is not. People should realize that advocating beating children is an opinion that has consequences. With freedom of speech comes responsibility, and the idiots on that radio show need to discover that they have to take responsibility for their ignorant, hateful actions.

What the heck is it with Sacramento, anyhow? Rush Limbaugh got his start in right-wing talk radio there, as many people know. I was listening to him back when the only station he was on was KFBK. But I don't recall him ever suggesting that the right way to deal with a gender non-conforming child was to beat the child with a shoe.
Tags: gender
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