Tevlin: Free speech matters when you don't agree with it

  • Article by: JON TEVLIN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 8, 2012 - 10:13 PM
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trailbayDec. 9, 12 7:00 AM

Yes, they won, but sometimes what is constitutional is not what is right. Mr Bentley put this on for free, through his and volunteers hard work. For anyone, no matter what the cause who try to take advantage of the work of others for their own gain is wrong. Now Mr Bentley is considering not doing the display anymore because he is tired of the fighting. So, those two guys won, but next year will probably get to preach to an empty field because the won but lost for everybody. I hope they are happy.

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leif123Dec. 9, 12 9:28 AM

I recommend a book by Nat hentoff, "free speech for me but not for thee" . 12 chapters, each chapter takes a controversial issue and shows how that got hammered in the free speech debate (right v. left, or left v. right.) afer reading a few chapters, you realize the importance of free speech, even speech you do not agree with.

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swmnguyDec. 9, 12 7:40 PM

It's always a delicate balance between people's right to free speech and other people's right not to be harassed. People put a lot of emphasis on their right to speak, but they're rarely willing to take responsibility for their speech when they offend people, and people respond with their own free, and disapproving, speech. You are free to speak. You are not free of the consequences of that speech. I would contrast these religious proselytizers to various civil disobedience practitioners, who speak disruptively with the full recognition and acceptance that they face reaction and arrest. If more people took their responsibilities as seriously as they do their rights, we'd be in better shape as a society.

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