Thursday, May 07, 2015

The Part Where I Lost My $#!+.

So, I'm driving to the range yesterday while listening to NPR, as one does, and The Diane Rehm Show is discussing the Garland, Texas incident. There's a guest or two fighting a valiant rear-guard action for the First Amendment, trying to explain to the hostess that it even protects people's right to be icky and Republican.

Then they opened the lines for callers and I very nearly drove into the ditch, yelling at the radio and gnawing on the steering wheel in impotent frustration:
"Welcome back, I'm Indira Lakshmanan, sitting in for Diane Rehm. We're talking about the Texas attack, ISIS, and the limits of free speech. I'm gonna read a post that we got here, an email from Jean, who says that if someone published cartoons of women, LGBTs, blacks, or a dozen other protected groups, wouldn't they be prosecuted as hate speech? And why does offense of anti-Islamic speech get a pass in the name of free speech?"
Jean you ignorant slut, do you know what they call it when people publish "cartoons of women, LGBTs, blacks, or a dozen other protected groups"? They call it the internet.

This is America: You can go to the bookstore and buy yourself copies of everything from The Basketball Diaries to The Motorcycle Diaries to The Turner Diaries. The frickin' Ku Klux Klan has a website, honey; I'm not going to give them a link, but it's three letters followed by a ".com", you should be able to figure it out. Or maybe not; you don't seem very bright.

If you rabbit people would stop looking for someone to expose your bellies to in submission for five seconds and listen... Look, you like Donna Shalala, right? Y'all are sympatico, right? On the same team? Try this one from her:
"You can't have a university without having free speech, even though at times it makes us terribly uncomfortable. If students are not going to hear controversial ideas on college campuses, they're not going to hear them in America."
How about bell hooks?
"The political core of any movement for freedom in the society has to have the political imperative to protect free speech."
Salman Rushdie?
"Free speech is the whole thing, the whole ball game. Free speech is life itself."
I'll give the Quote of the Day to Ken at Popehat:
Seriously, yesterday's Diane Rehm Show was the scariest thing I've heard on the radio since I listened to Mystery Theater on a battery operated boom box sleeping out in a friend's treehouse when I was twelve. It used to be that if there was one thing you could at least count on liberals for, it was a vigorous defense of free speech; it's a cause that has found the ACLU in bed with the NRA on at least one occasion I can think of. This new turn is... chilling.