Thursday, December 19, 2013

What the duck?

The only dynasty of ducks I know anything about.
Oh, for the love of marzipan: this beard-guy fuss is NOT a free speech issue. It would be if he had been arrested for saying these things. Or if Congress had passed a law saying that he couldn't say those things.

If I am the CEO of a left-handed scissor company and I say, "Left-handed people are the scum of God's shoes and should be run out of town on a rail and forced to clean aquariums for all time," the government has no right (under the 1st Amendment) to abridge my speech. The government cannot make me stop talking or punish me with imprisonment or threaten financial hardship if they don't like what I'm saying.

However! The *company* has every right to can my ass for damaging the product, if my remarks are perceived to harm the bottom line - even if a bunch of people then stand up to support me and say, "Damn right! Those lefties are the devil's asparagus and not fit for humanity! Our religion allows us to hate them, even as we stress that our God loves them!"

I can also seek employment at the competing local right-handed scissor factory and continue to rant against the sinister heathens, selling millions more if the glorious right-handed master race decides to support me and my new company.

These are all of the things I can do.

The guy from this television show is free at any time to give interviews to GQ, saying whatever he wants. He can say that he loves hippos, he can say that he believes Julia Roberts runs a secret moonbase with plans to conquer Spain, he can even say gay people confuse and sicken him.

All of that stuff is protected.

He could criticize the management of his broadcasting company, A&E. He could call into question the business acumen and decision making abilities of the executives, and that they wouldn't know a successful show if it bit them in the butt, alligator style.

All of that is protected speech under the 1st amendment, which is still going strong.

A&E can fire the entire show. They can change programming to be nothing but homosexuals hanging curtains. They could change to be just about actual ducks in a dynasty.

All of that is protected speech.

And Old Man Phelps can keep telling everyone that gay people are going to steal their children to worship Satan, and picketing the funerals of soldiers and celebrities.

First amendment, still going strong.

The first amendment protects speech from government intervention. It does not protect people who say things and expect no consequences. Some people seem to be under the mistaken idea that they can say anything, and if bad consequences arise, they can somehow claim that they had their foot on the base this ENTIRE time and so nuh-uh they aren't out!

If this entire circumstance were reversed and there was a popular network called "God and U," and they were airing an extremely popular program called "This Week in God and Steve" and Steve is a mild-mannered dude but it turns out he has a socialist background, that network can fire Steve. And it wouldn't be a First Amendment issue.

A silly example, you say?

Tell that to the teacher who was punished by a Christian school for things she did in the privacy of her house. ("Christian school suspends teacher after photo appears on ‘revenge porn’ website")

Still not a problem with the first amendment.

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