James Leroy Wilson's blog

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Government Censorship is Indefensible

I'm trying to be as understanding of other points of view. Many people do have good intentions and are just lacking facts and don't think things through. They know the economic system really is rigged against the masses. They really do want to protect the children. They really are afraid of terrorism. They go on to advocate policies that will exacerbate rather than alleviate their concerns, but their concerns are understandable.

But there are some causes where I just don't see any "good intentions" at all. They seem to me to be nothing but just attempts by selfish people to use the government to get back at enemies or force their utopia on everyone else. One example is campaign laws restricting speech. The government banned a documentary trashing Hillary Clinton during the Presidential campaign, saying it amounted to a political ad.

But the First Amendment is quite clear: Congress shall make no law abridging freedom of speech, or of the press. The Supreme Court has hedged in the past, making the indefensible claim that "commercial speech" can be regulated, that political campaigns can be regulated, and that campaign ads can be regulated. This is all demonstrably false in the Constitution's clear language.

And even if the First Amendment never existed, the Constitution doesn't give Congress the power to regulate speech or the press.

And even if the Constitution didn't exist, government has no right to censor. Speech, even foul and false speech, does not constitute aggression against another person's body or property. There is no justification for censorship, and there is no justification for the intentions that would make one want to censor others.

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