Quite a head scratcher here the other day in Philadelphia. We had Geert Wilders of Fitna fame come to give a speech, invited by conservative Republicans. You see as good Christians, they love anyone who not only bashes Islam, but actually is working to outlaw and censor it, which is what he’s trying to do in the Netherlands. Also, taking a page from the creative word play of our conservative Republicans, his political party is the Party of Freedom, because as you know, nothing says freedom like censorship and outlawing peoples’ rights to think. Now on the other side of the whackaloon spectrum, you have the lost their way Left, those who rightly object to Wilders’ attempts to censor but ironically endorse censorship themselves by way of what they call hate speech. They were out in droves to protest Wilders at the Union League, an impressive building on Broad Street a block or so south of City Hall where the Republicans gather and do whatever it is they do behind closed doors (and in absolute luxury, let me tell you, because I’ve been in there and it’s beautiful).
First off, the entire notion of hate speech is ridiculous. It’s merely secular blasphemy. As reprehensible as it may sound, anyone should have the right to say they hate gays, Jews, whites, blacks, men, women, whatever. It’s the next step of actually acting upon such beliefs that is criminal, not thinking or expressing one’s thoughts. We cannot begin entertaining the idea of thought crime simply because we don’t find certain things to be nice. That’s censorship.
This notion that we can’t have certain things said or else it will drive people to do bad things is also absurd. Whatever happened to personal responsibility? Explain to me how thinking people need to be protected from hearing someone say “whitey must die” or else they’ll be inspired to kill whites and thinking women need to be covered in a burka or else men will be inspired to rape them. It’s the same damn thing!
So everyone should have the right to say Sharia law is crap. They should also have the right to say Islam is crap, Muslims are crappy people, the Koran should be censored, and that such speech is offensive and that it should be censored. Opinions, however much any of us disagree with them, have a right to exist and be expressed. Again, it’s taking the next step of acting upon such opinions which alone enters the realm of criminality.
Everyone has the right to be protected from harm, but no one has the right to not be offended or insulted. This political correctness run amok is not just absurd, but dangerous, just as dangerous as those on the far right who would outlaw Islam altogether.