An Open Letter To The Freedom Of Speech

October 29, 2018

Dear Freedom of Speech,

Sometimes, I do not think I appreciate you enough.

It is easy to take you for granted, even easier to forget you are there until we become inconvenienced by your limits or until people attempt to step on you.

I can admit that I run my mouth quite often and take full advantage of you. You give me the opportunity to voice my opinions, no matter if they might offend someone else. As of lately though, people do not want you to protect opinions that disagree with their own views.

I can understand wanting things to not be said in order to avoid antagonizing a situation or in order to avoid unneeded fear (like screaming fire in a theater or bomb on an airplane), but wanting things to not be said in order to preserve comfort might be going a bit far.

Banned Books Week is an example of throwing the Freedom of Speech out the window to make comfort the first priority. People attempt to restrict what other people can read and enjoy based around their personal discomfort. Now, that is not to say that Fifty Shades of Grey should be allowed in schools because people might enjoy it; but The Diary of A Young Girl should not be banned purely because it is upsetting.

Where does that leave the verbal extent?

Here in America, we can say anything we want but only until someone disagrees. That actually is not entirely true. In America, our Freedom of Speech is limited on school campuses, on planes, in airports, in theaters, in subways, on buses and the list keeps going. Most limitations are normal or at the very least within reason, such as do not scream bomb on an airplane or in an airport because it could cause incredible amounts of panic and fear. Other limits impede on what we have been taught that we were promised in The Constitution.

Freedom of Speech, I promise I will never take you for granted again,

Diana Pizitz

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