People who want to ‘tweak’ the First Amendment don’t want free speech

Now and then it’s good to have a brief check-in on premises, as in the basic assumptions of our thinking.

The topic was brought home to me Tuesday by an article at Breitbart, by Pam Key, recounting Joy Behar’s dictum during a discussion of free speech at The View that the First and Second Amendments need “tweaking.”

Key quotes Behar:  “When the Founding Fathers were busy with the amendments — the 1st and 2nd Amendments — they did not have AR-15s in there, weapons of war, and they didn’t have Twitter. So both amendments, I think, need to be tweaked a little bit.” Continue reading “People who want to ‘tweak’ the First Amendment don’t want free speech”

Dumbing debate down on the Mohammed cartoon contest and Jade Helm 15

Dumb and dumber.

Pamela-GellerThe ticket price for joining the mainstream debates on many topics these days seems to be ritual ad hominem attacks.  Besides being unhelpful, this is evidence of profound societal illness.

The phenomenon isn’t confined to the left.  We see it more and more frequently from the right-that-ought-to-know-better – or, perhaps, the right-that-ought-to-have-more-backbone.  I wrote about one major instance of it last year during the crisis at the Bundy ranch, when conservative pundits whom we have counted on to bring logic and intellectual courage to public issues suffered “CLIF”:  complete loss of intellectual function.  They went from being able to talk about things like government limits and property rights to being unable to do anything except rail against Cliven Bundy. Continue reading “Dumbing debate down on the Mohammed cartoon contest and Jade Helm 15”

Mr. Paul goes to Washington

Assassination – No.

There are a lot of things going on in America today, from inclement weather in northern Virginia to the uneasy high-fiving over the record Dow close of yesterday, to my own efforts to refinance my house (a fax-intensive operation, to say the least).

But the most important thing may well be the filibuster Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) is conducting in the U.S. Senate right now.  Officially, Paul is holding up the confirmation vote for John Brennan as director of central intelligence – which is, in its own right, a foolish and ill-judged appointment, but Paul has already endorsed the appointments of both John Kerry and Chuck Hagel, because he thinks the president should have as much latitude in that area as possible.  Paul’s real concern is, rather, Continue reading “Mr. Paul goes to Washington”

DO we have the right to disobey Islamic law?

Congress shall make no law.

My Green Room colleague Laura Curtis asked yesterday whether we should have the right to disobey Islamic law, and her post understandably got a lot of interest.

I would like to suggest that we need to pose the question a different way, because how we answer it will depend on how it is asked.  I believe the correct question is: Do we have the right to disobey Islamic law?

That’s how the philosophers of America’s founding would have put the question. Continue reading “DO we have the right to disobey Islamic law?”