Beliefnet
City of Brass

I believe in free speech, as a matter of pragmatism as well as principle. I believe the answer to bad speech is more speech, not less.

As a blogger, I think I have a duty to use the power of the platform to advance the cause of free speech in whatever small ways I can. For example, I’ve hosted the trailer for Obsession and the Fitna video at my blog, I supported the publication of Jewel of Medina, and I’ve published images and artwork of the prophet Mohammed. I’ve also defended Geert Wilders and Varun Gandi, arguing they should not have been arrested for their vile Islamophobic statements and incitements.

I also am strongly against Sedition Laws of any kind, but I do make an exception for the case of non-citizens of the United States who come here to preach violence. I support deportation of foreign Imams in mosques, for example, who would call for violent jihad (actually, hirabah) from the minbar/pulpit. However, the free speech rights of a citizen of the United States are inviolate and eternal.

As far as separation of church and state, I believe that expressions of religion in the public sphere do not transgress the separation but actually act to preserve it. Expressions of faith are a form of speech, so I am not opposed to Ten Commandments tablets on government grounds. Again, if a religious group feels marginalized by such things, they are free to erect their own monuments. I do believe that if taxpayer-owned property is used to host an expression of religious faith, however, then it must accommodate additional expressions by other groups, as long as all the expressions are of comparable quality (so, no hand-lettered sign saying “Cthulhu lives!” next to a $40k granite slab with the Commandments inscribed). I do support a Fairness Doctrine as regards to political speech on the public airwaves, for similar reasons. The bottom line is that if we are to use the public arena for one viewpoint, then we are obligated to let all viewpoints access it, because the public field for speech and expression must be maintained absolutely level at all costs.

Here are my posts tagged Free Speech at City of Brass.

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