Monday, December 23, 2013
Not Ducking The Issue
I don't watch Duck Dynasty or anything on A&E for that matter. I remember when the network used to be one devoted more to the arts than reality programs based on duck calls.
A network has to make money, however. Duck Dynasty appears to have done that for A&E, and A&E has done that for the Robertson family, as well.
I've been careful not to weigh in too much on what Mr. Robertson said or didn't say because I don't care. He has a right to free speech, and I will defend his right to say whatever the heck he wants to say. As Americans, we are given that right. We are also given the right to worship any God or practice any religion we choose without fear of retribution from the government. For that matter, you are also free to not practice any religion or to even refrain from worshipping at all.
That, however, does not excuse what we say. This freedom of speech that we have should not be practiced capriciously.
Speaking from personal experience, there are times that I agonize over nearly every important word of a blog post. I know that if I write the wrong thing here that my entire life could be turned upside down. That's why I don't follow the advice of some of the folks that wish I'd be more vicious here. I'll be the first to admit that I've toned down and held back my rhetoric both politically and personally here. I like my job, and I know my employers can read this blog. It's in the public spectrum.
It appears that Mr. Robertson didn't take this into account when he made his comments, and, if he did, he did so without thinking them through.
Listen, Robertson's been lifted up and defended and pushed down and beaten up enough over this the last few days. The last thing you want to hear from me is more piling on. His statements stand for themselves, and I found them personally vulgar and ignorant. I was not offended, but I was saddened about how much our society values the words of celebrities these days.
Let me finish with this, though. For those who are standing up and defending Mr. Robertson and his views, you had better be ready to stand up and defend folks like Bill Maher and many others that have been demonized by the right wing media for what they have said. As for me, I believe in a right to free speech, but I also believe that right comes with an unspoken contract to be responsible for what you say and the consequences that follow.
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