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Freedom of Speech, not Freedom to Hate

Updated on January 10, 2015

Freedom is only Free, if everyone has it

Freedom of speech seems to be a big topic at the moment, particularly with people coming out for or against things like health care reform, gay marriage, homosexuality etc. Think Kirk Cameron, and his declaration of homosexuality being 'unnatural' etc. People are up in arms on both sides of that debate.

Lets Look a Little Closer at That

So, lets look at that - yes, for one, Kirk is entitled to his opinion, and entitled to the freedom to express that opinion. As are those who are against his views - such as the gay community, as well as those who agree, but disagree with the gay community's outrage at Kirk. So, there are a few things there:

  1. Kirk is famous. He knows this. He also knows that if he expresses a public opinion on a dividing subject that he will experience backlash from the disagreeing side.
  2. The Gay Community are outraged, that someone in his position would say such things publicly, and are upset that his opinion is such. They are entitled to feel this way.
  3. The Kirk supporters are upset at the backlash Kirk is receiving, and think that the gay community are infringing on his right to free speech.
  4. And the real kicker is - in doing so, the Kirk supporters etc are infringing on the free speech of the gay community, but are also entitled to their opinion on the matter.

So, Is Anyone Actually In the Wrong?

So, in the end, no one is actually wrong. Yet, people are shouting, and waving their arms, and saying "the gays are infringing on my/kirks/any against homsexuality person's rights to free speech!", and the LGBT community are saying 'hey, that really pissed us off what you said. But that's just our opinion." Everyone is infringing on everyone else's right to freedom of speech.

I read in the comments to another hub, that we are "confusing freedom of speech with freedom from consequence" This is so true. Kirk, and others like him, accept that there are consequences to their freedom of speech - as we have seen. There are consequences to freedom of speech for all over us, regardless of what side we are on of the argument.

But as long as no rights are being infringed on, on either side, freedom of speech should be enjoyed.

Remembering, that freedom of speech, is not freedom from consequence - you can't take it back, once you've said it. And, it is not freedom to hate, or incite hatred of a person/people/group.

Live well, love one another, express and accept opinions, and most of all - grant the same freedoms to others, you would have them grant to you.

Because, after all, Freedom isn't actually free, unless everyone has it.


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    • themadimadimadi profile image

      Madison Gardiner. 5 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      I love this hub, just love it. The ending in particular is very well written, you have a way with words and I like your thoughts and beliefs here. "Live well, love one another, express and accept opinions, and most of all - grant the same freedoms to others, you would have them grant to you." I just love it, I don't know what else to say. Great hub, keep it up sister!

    • jlpark profile image

      Jacqui 5 years ago from New Zealand

      I like the way you think, and the way you put those thoughts across. Thank you for sharing this

    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 5 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      Well said, jlpark. Up, Useful, Interesting, and shared.

      I do have a quibble with your sentence, "So, in the end, no one is actually wrong." True, in the sense that each side in the discussion has the right to have and express an opinion. False, in that evidence supports the opinion that some people being born gay or bi is natural. Many people come to that conclusion every day on the basis of first hand experiences with relations, friends, and neighbors. The American Psychiatric Association concluded on the basis of decades of clinical experience and of large-scale studies that homosexuality is psychologically normal, not pathological.

      And that arguments based on the authority of scripture do not hold up is shown by the ministers and the denominations that ordain openly homosexual ministers, of whom I've known several. They readily refute Bible based arguments for suppressing homosexual relationships.

      My response to Kirk Cameron is, you have a right to have and express your opinion, and your opinion is wrong, being, unlike the opposing opinion, not backed by facts, logic, or experience. For more, see my hub on equal marriage.

      "Unnatural" is often used not in a philosophical sense but rather to mean "something I'm not used to." When I moved to the American West from the American Midwest, driving on mountain roads seemed unnatural to me. Eating raw oysters seems to me disgusting and unnatural. I have learned, and have come to accept, that some people actually relish eating raw oysters.

    • Patty Kenyon profile image

      Patty Kenyon 5 years ago from Ledyard, Connecticut

      Awesome Job!!! There is too much going on in the world today, and honestly there is no more room for hatred or prejudice in any way. Often times there is a double standard on what some are allowed in regards to Freedom of Speech...Freedom, itself, has become "lost in translation." The important thing is one should be free to be who they are regardless of what others long as they are true to themselves, then freedom shall ring.

    • thejokethatkills profile image

      thejokethatkills 5 years ago

      Great hub. There's always so much unnecessary hatred in this world, but hopefully, with time, the world will gradually become more accepting. I think to certain degree, with more exposure on these topics, society is becoming more accepting. I agree though, that we all need to be held accountable for our actions and words, even if we have freedom of speech, regardless of our stance on particular issues. Well thought out hub, all your writing is always well developed.