Sunday, August 22, 2010

Rashad Robinson on Dr. Laura's Pity Party: Free Speech Is About Taking Responsibility

Rashad Robinson at Huffington Post on the claim of Dr. Laura Schlessinger that she is a victim of those trying to curb her free speech after she went on one final bias-fueled tirade on her radio show:

What Schlessinger, Palin, and so many others fail (or refuse) to comprehend is that "freedom of speech" is not "freedom from the consequences of speech." If a figure who has put him or herself in the public eye uses speech to harm others, he or she must held accountable. Critics have the responsibility to exercise THEIR freedom of speech in order to educate the public when false and hurtful information is being spread. We learned in the late 90s how "Dr. Laura" feels about LGBT people. We now know how "Dr Laura" feels about race. The public has a right to know whether her sponsors agree with her, and Schlessinger's advertisers have every right to drop their support.

Yes, Schlessinger, Palin and others of their ilk do refuse to understand that with their free speech goes responsibility for what they incite through through their words.  Their rule of thumb is clearly, Responsibility for others.  For libs and progressives.

Not for me.  Not for my mind.

The hatred of Muslims worldwide, and in the U.S. in particular, which Ms. Palin is currently trying to whip up for her own political gain, will have dire and long-term consequences for all of us.  Does she care about those long-term consequences as she looks at her own short-term gain?

I seriously doubt it.

My use of the little-violin symbol to comment on Dr. Laura's pity party borrows shamelessly from Pam Spaulding's wonderful Pam's House Blend blog (a link is in my blog list at the right),  who uses this image when people who live in glass houses throw stones at others and then ask for pity when the windows and walls of their own dwellings crack.  Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.