January 12, 2011

TO ACCEPT THAT CRITICISM IS LEGITIMATE WOULD BE TO ACCEPT THAT THEY MIGHT BE WRONG, WHICH IS UNTHINKABLE:

What's so bad about civility? (Clarence Page, 1/11/11, Chicago Tribune)

Civility came up constantly, partly because of Sarah Palin's Facebook page that famously featured a U.S. map with cross hairs superimposed on the districts of 20 House Democrats, including Giffords'. After the shooting, the graphic was removed and Palin offered condolences.

Some of her fellow conservatives, uncomfortably put on the defensive, lashed out at the new calls for civility in a rather uncivil fashion. "What this is all about is shutting down any and all political opposition and eventually criminalizing it," said an infuriated Rush Limbaugh. "Criminalizing policy differences at least when they differ from the Democrat Party agenda."

Now, now. No one of any note has called for the criminalizing of opinion and I seriously doubt that anyone will. Criminalizing opinions in our culture only makes heroic martyrs out of those who hold them. Free speech lives. So does free choice. Just as everyone has the right to voice his or her opinion, everyone also has the right to criticize the speaker.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 12, 2011 5:34 PM
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