It seems to me, the old saying, “I may not agree with what you say, but I’ll fight to the death to protect your right to say it,” shows a level of maturity that our society, at present, lacks. The very people that are the safeguards of free speech, university professors, have become it’s biggest threat. Today, someone who speaks a message that the political establishment doesn’t like, especially about limited government, constitutionalism, liberty, free markets, essentially if anyone openly supports the philosophy the United States was founded on, is slandered and the power of the political establishment is wielded against her. Far from being a society that values the free exchange of ideas, the progressive controlled education system instead indoctrinates and enforces a political agenda. A society that doesn’t value free exchange of ideas is doomed to stagnation and decay.
Even as most Sanders supporters would claim to be followers of the tradition, they prove by their actions, they stand against the free exchange of ideas. Trump supporters on the other hand are painted as uncaring, petty tyrants, yet by their actions they prove they are the opposite. The socialist and progressive element that supported Sanders, and now Clinton, turn out at Trump rallies and become violent, Trump supporters however, do not turn up at Clinton rallies and become violent. It is by violence that he most ardently anti free exchange of idea zealots show their true colors. How presumptuous is it, to presume to have any right to use violence, to force another not to speak?! Yet our media is full of news of protesters turned violent at Trump rallies but not at Clinton rallies. It follows then, that the protesters at Trump rallies are violent, and use violence to suppress the free exchange of ideas.
Progressives have controlled the education system for decades. Their near monopoly has been enhanced by the federalizing of education. As more money is paid from the federal government to school districts that money isn’t charity, it buys something, that something is a seat at the table. At every school board meeting there is a seat that is invisible, that is the federal government’s seat. While that seat appears to be silent, the money it sends and the threat of withholding that money speak far louder than any emotional parent only seeking the best education for his child. Today with the albatross of Common Core the federal government’s progressive agenda is manifest. Schools have dropped all pretense of educating children and have gleefully taken up the mantle of indoctrinating children to be good little automatons who vote right, think right, act right and speak right… it is so progressive.
People have become so inured to the undercurrent of hostility to actual free speech most of us don’t even notice it. We watched without so much as firing a synapse, when we learned the IRS was using it’s power to silence a political faction and collecting a political enemies list, so far have we moved from valuing free speech and become so used to usurpations of it. News that in any other decade would have been the end of a Presidency resulted in… nothing. Barely a whisper in the zeitgeist. Say something not politically correct and you come under shaming attacks, as if the morality of the political establishment has so much more validity even, than God’s, such hubris is the stock of politicians and villains. Today people censor themselves in ways we don’t even think about, not to be courteous, no, courtesy is frowned upon, to be thinking in line with what the political establishment demands of you, enforced by your friends, family and townspeople.
It does require a level of maturity to hear something we deeply disagree with though doesn’t it? A civilized man or woman will listen and control their emotional reaction, a barbarian will fly into a rage and become violent, betraying his savagery. That is a level of maturity people are not being trained to have. Our media, schools, culture and government all create an environment that is hostile to the free exchange of ideas. College students are so fragile they recoil from the very mention of liberty, so indoctrinated they actively demand the silencing of people who favor liberty, free exchange of ideas and free markets. To despise the philosophy behind the phrase, “I may not agree with what you say, but I’ll fight to the death to protect your right to say it,” shows one to be uncivilized. Civilization however, requires civilized people, civilization crumbles into chaos if the citizens are replaced by barbarians. Replace the flour in a cake, with dirt, and you no longer have cake.