Another Reason Not to Be a Democrat

Reason number 76372 not to belong to the Democratic Party:

They target a private citizen to silence him from using his constitutionally-protected first amendment right to free speech.

It’s ok to disagree with Rush Limbaugh. I happen to agree with much of what he says, and think he’s a positive influence. And if you disagree, that’s your opinion, too.

But government entities have no business harassing private citizens’ free speech. This must be part of the “change” Obama promised to inflict upon Americans.

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US Government Restricts Free Speech and Expression of Religion

The “separation of church and state,” such as it is, should keep the government from imposing a religion upon the people of this country.

But regulations that squelch the speech of pastors? Can the US Government tell pastors what they can and cannot talk about?

There is no law that I’m aware of that restricts the speech of pastors, but IRS regulations in place for over 50 years threaten to withdraw the tax-exempt status of churches that speak on politics. I am convinced this is a contributing factor to the decline of morality in the USA. The churches are the center of what we consider moral in the country, and if the pulpits are silent, immorality blossoms.

Some pastors have begun specifically defying this regulation by specifically mentioning candidates by name. Their goal is to overturn the IRS regulation through the court system. Listen: all rules and regulations in this country should follow the US Constitution, right? Here’s the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution –

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

That tells me that the government can’t pass any laws on what churches can and cannot say, anymore than they can tell newspapers what they can and cannot print. Read that amendment and explain to me how it could be interpreted otherwise.

If you’d like to read more, the Alliance Defense Fund is spearheading this project.

“Pastors have a right to speak about Biblical truths from the pulpit without fear of punishment. No one should be able to use the government to intimidate pastors into giving up their constitutional rights,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel Erik Stanley.

It’s a government restriction on the freedom of speech and the expression of religion. I cant see how anyone could interpret the Constitution any other way.

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Offending the Religious

NBC aired “The Book of Daniel” against the objections of Christian conservatives. Poorly written, appealing to few people, too controversial for advertisers, the “Book of Daniel” was dropped.

European newspapers have published cartoons depicting Mohamed with a bomb for a turban. Muslims rioted, kidnapped Europeans, burned effigies.

Both freedom of speech examples. Both examples of offense to religion. The reactions are quite different, but not the spark.

While Reporters Without Borders defended the media’s “right to make fun,” many newspapers argued free speech was not an excuse for gratuitous insults.

“Newspapers are not obliged to republish offensive material merely because it is controversial,” wrote Britain’s Guardian.

“The provocation became a violation of a people’s values, not a defense of one’s own important values,” said Finland’s Hufvudstadsbladet. “Freedom of speech is a cornerstone of democracy, but that should not be taken as an obligation to needlessly blaspheme others’ basic values,” said Ilta-Sanomat.

Protest calls multiplied at Friday prayers from Muslims, for some of whom the physical portrayal of the prophet is strictly forbidden. Imams said free speech was not the issue.

“They are not doing it to exercise their freedom, they are doing it to provoke people and create havoc,” said Abdulkadir Orire, leader of the Nigerian Muslim group Jama’atu Nasril Islam. “Freedom of expression is going beyond the limit.”

In Senegal, Imam Assane Cisse of the Cheikh Ibrahim Niass brotherhood said the cartoon had “nothing to do with freedom of expression,” but simply showed a lack of respect.

I’m glad to see that some people are starting to realize that because you can say anything you want, doesn’t mean you should.