In defense of free speech

There is no value that we as Americans should hold more dearly than free speech. Free speech is what makes us who we are, it allows us to speak our minds and fight injustice without worry of punishment. Sadly today in America free speech is under attack. Time and time again speakers (mainly conservative) are being turned away from giving their speeches by violent protests and threats. What happened to the America where if you disagreed with someone you calmly held your peace until it was your turn to speak and then spoke your mind? That America is gone and so instead of honoring one another’s right to free speech protesters yell and clamor, set fire to trash cans, and throw a violent tantrum until they get their way and the speaker pulls out.
Nowhere has this been more evident than at UC Berkeley, California flagship state school, where in the last few months multiple violent protests have broken out and 2 major speeches cancelled. The first was a speech by controversial gay conservative Milo Yiannopoulos and the second was by fellow conservative Ann Coulter. The university canceled Milo’s speech after violent protests led by antifa members broke out and Coulter’s speech was canceled because of threats of violence which then happened anyway. Both protests were leading antifa members.
Free speech is the amendment this country was built on. Every major movement in U.S. history has been fueled by free speech. It spread the flames of revolution, let Upton Sinclair expose the meatpacking industry, and gave Martin Luther King the platform to share his dream. People didn’t always agree with each other and there will always be a detractor for every advocate but we can not shut down someone else’s right to speak because they’re ideals do not line up with your own. This especially true at college campuses like Berkeley, which are supposed to hotbeds of expression where you can debate your ideals and argue your points. Sadly now a days of you’re a conservative and are unwilling to bend to the left you are no longer welcome to express your 1st amendment right. This is not just happening at Berkeley but all across the country, and is happening at an alarming rate. We as Americans must all step up to the plate and defend each other’s right to free speech or watch the America we know and love get washed down the drain.


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