One of the many things that the liberals consistently fail to comprehend is the fact that our rights either apply to everyone, or to no one at all. There is no middle ground where constitutional liberties apply to some Americans but not to others, even though that’s how the far left would have it if they could. The fact of the matter is that once tyranny gains a foothold, we all lose.
This is exactly the point made recently by Greg Magarian, a professor of law at Washington University in St. Louis. “A familiar meme in recent days has been that display of the Nazi flag is inherently incitement,” Magarian said, referring to Nazi flags being flown at certain rallies across the country. “That term is important, because incitement is a doctrine that exempts certain speech from First Amendment protection. However, display of a Nazi flag, without more, doesn’t come close to satisfying the legal test for incitement.”
Professor Magarian goes on to explain how the term “incitement” has a very narrow definition that is directly related to imminent unlawful action, ultimately concluding that there is “very strong evidence that the display of a Nazi flag without other, aggravating circumstances doesn’t amount to incitement.”
It is worth noting that just because someone doesn’t believe the display of Nazi flags incites violence doesn’t mean that they support the Nazi flag. Likewise, the fact that Professor Magarian seems to believe that flying the Nazi flag is protected by the First Amendment doesn’t make he himself a Nazi or a Nazi sympathizer. Contrary to what the vast majority of leftists will tell you, it is possible to support the freedom of speech without actually supporting the content of said speech.
Professor Magarian goes on to explain how while supporting the display of the Nazi flag can do significant harm to our society, “trying to shut down such displays does greater harm and runs greater risks.”
“If we allowed for punishing hate speech, states would prosecute people for being anti-white male and anti-corporate,” Magarian says. “If we broadened the true threat exemption, police would break up Black Lives Matter marches with complete impunity.”
How would the liberals react if their ongoing push for political censorship were to backfire on them? What would they do if organizations like CAIR, Planned Parenthood, and the SEIU were all labeled as hate groups and discredited to the point where they were rendered virtually irrelevant? Chances are they wouldn’t be too happy, and they may even turn into staunch supporters of the First Amendment. What a shame it would be if our country had to take another giant leap towards totalitarianism for the left to hop on the free speech bandwagon. (Related: Portland mayor wants to label all opinions he disagrees with as hate speech,)
It goes without saying that the Founding Fathers didn’t include the freedom of speech in the Bill of Rights so that one political party could benefit from it while the other suffers. Rather, the First Amendment, just like the second, the fourth, the fifth and others, applies to every single American, because it is the duty of every American to keep the federal government inside the box that is the United States Constitution. What the left unfortunately doesn’t understand is that by constantly looking to infringe on the First Amendment rights of others, they are only harming themselves. America’s transformation into a tyrannical state isn’t something that will only have a negative effect on conservatives, nor will it only have a negative effect on the progressive left. Once liberty is gone, it is gone for good, or, to quote the late Ronald Reagan, “liberty is never more than one generation away from extinction.”