Taking Back America

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Censoring Language as Offensive Violates the Constitution

American Thinker
By Michael Bargo, Jr. | 3 November 2016
 
The concept that language and actions should be censored or banned outright by public schools and public spaces because some persons may be offended violates the U.S. Constitution in many ways.

One, the most obvious one, is that it allows a tiny group of people to say they are offended and thereby censor the language of others. The First Amendment does not say that the freedom of speech can be infringed by somebody claiming to be offended by the exercise of someone else’s speech. This standard of personal feeling is not written anywhere into any right protected by the Constitution. Feelings are not relevant — they simply are not mentioned as variables that influence legislation. If they were, people should have the power to shut down government regulations because they were offended by them. But, curiously, those who promote using the concept of personal offense never speak of limiting government, only limiting the people.

Evidence of this is that we are told no matter how many people are offended by government mandates or Supreme Court decisions, such as same-sex marriage, the fact that people are offended doesn’t have any standing when standing in the way of the rights of others being expanded. The people can’t influence government on the basis of being personally offended, only government bureaucrats can use this strategy.

This leads into the second important Constitutional issue regarding the offensive language standard: the 14th Amendment. The 14th Amendment says that no state can pass a law that denies anyone equal protection. This means that a tiny group of people cannot have a right to censor language as offensive, and no one else. So far no one has explained, in constitutional terms; why one person, who claims to be offended, has the right to shut down the speech, clothing, or legal actions of everyone else.
 
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