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Thread: Is Progressive Ideology Incompatible With The First Amendment?

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    Chris's Avatar Senior Member
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    Is Progressive Ideology Incompatible With The First Amendment?

    To me this question is difficult to answer because progressives define and frame free speech so differently than libertarians or even conservatives.

    According to Is Progressive Ideology Incompatible With The First Amendment?, progressives, represented here by Seldman, would answer progressivism is incompatible with free speech.

    A recent New York Times story claiming conservatives have “weaponized” free speech put the spotlight on a law review article by Georgetown law professor Louis Michael Seidman titled, “Can Free Speech Be Progressive?” Seidman’s answer to his question is “no.” He is probably not wrong, even if some of his arguments are.

    ...He writes that fundamentally, “free speech law is much more conducive to constitutionally required libertarianism” and “entrenches a social view at war with key progressive objectives.”...

    ...Seidman first objects that free speech is tied to the ownership of places and things – and that such ownership is largely private, corporate, and unequal....

    ...Seidman’s second objection is that the First Amendment “assumes that speech is ‘free’ when government ‘makes no laws,’ and that it is laws that have the potential to ‘abridge’ the freedom of speech.” In contrast, progressives believe “the government has a duty to act affirmatively to counterbalance private power and correct for the unfairness of market allocations,” including in the marketplace of ideas.

    ...Seidman’s final objection is that free speech law is concerned with government neutrality regarding content, viewpoint, and speaker. He observes that under classical liberalism, free speech is how political disputes get resolved; thus, “the Constitution is supposed to provide the mechanism by which people with opposing views can settle their disagreements through law rather than power.” In contrast, Seidman asserts progressivism cannot be neutral, because it has already decided the answers.

    ...
    Edmund Burke: "In vain you tell me that Artificial Government is good, but that I fall out only with the Abuse. The Thing! the Thing itself is the Abuse!"

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    When has this nation ever had free speech? As my first and only exhibit I present the late George Carlin:


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    MisterVeritis's Avatar Senior Member
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    Progressivism is incompatible with the Constitution.
    Call your state legislators and insist they approve the Article V convention of States to propose amendments.

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    Modern day conservatives and liberals are incompatible with the Constitution, but the left is specifically incompatible with the Constitution in regards to the 1st and 2nd Amendments.

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    It seems to me that liberals only want free speech that they agree with and to hell with everyone else. That is dangerous to our society and it will be dangerous to them when their political figures no longer agree with them in the future. They do not have a clue that they are being catered to their beliefs by the left as they are being used by them right now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by barb012 View Post
    It seems to me that liberals only want free speech that they agree with and to hell with everyone else. That is dangerous to our society and it will be dangerous to them when their political figures no longer agree with them in the future. They do not have a clue that they are being catered to their beliefs by the left as they are being used by them right now.
    Precisely: "In contrast, Seidman asserts progressivism cannot be neutral, because it has already decided the answers."
    Edmund Burke: "In vain you tell me that Artificial Government is good, but that I fall out only with the Abuse. The Thing! the Thing itself is the Abuse!"

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    Free speech protections apply to black N.F.L. players who kneel while working at the job site.

    Free speech protections do not apply to a McDonalds employee who, while working at the job site, tells a potential customer to eat at Burger King.

    Free speech protections apply to Madonna who says she thought about blowing up the white house.

    Free speech protections do not apply to conservatives, like Ann Coulter, who want to speak at Berkley.

    Regarding the N.F.L. players have any of them led a protest against police brutality in front of a police station or city hall?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DLLS View Post
    Free speech protections apply to black N.F.L. players who kneel while working at the job site.

    Free speech protections do not apply to a McDonalds employee who, while working at the job site, tells a potential customer to eat at Burger King.

    Free speech protections apply to Madonna who says she thought about blowing up the white house.

    Free speech protections do not apply to conservatives, like Ann Coulter, who want to speak at Berkley.

    Regarding the N.F.L. players have any of them led a protest against police brutality in front of a police station or city hall?

    Technically, er, politically, when it comes to the First Amendment, free speech is only protected against the government intruding upon it: "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."

    Socially, I think we would all want to protect it even when we find the ideas expressed most offensive. For all opinions and ideas are offensive to some, but it's the only way we have we have to pursue truth.

    This guy gets it right:

    Edmund Burke: "In vain you tell me that Artificial Government is good, but that I fall out only with the Abuse. The Thing! the Thing itself is the Abuse!"

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    Chris (at the risk of being unduly informal) the First Amendment has through the years been expanded to include a lot of things the founders clearly could not have intended.

    As an example, "or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press" the press has taken this to mean that they can rely on secret (read made up) sources without having to reveal who those sources are. That they are free to barge into any place they want to and shove a microphone in a persons face.

    My understanding of the intent of that part of the first amendment is that it prohibited the government from preventing the publication of newspapers, not that it gave reporters carte blanche to do whatever the hell they wanted to.

    The Supremes have completely misinterpreted the establishment clause. All it states, in simple terms, is that there will not be a Church of the United States like there was a Church of England. It does not state a high school coach cannot walk out to the middle of a football field and kneel in prayer. It does not state that a decades old cross erected on private land that has since become public land must be torn down. These acts in my opinion violate the part of the first that prevents the government from prohibiting the free exercise of religion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chris View Post
    To me this question is difficult to answer because progressives define and frame free speech so differently than libertarians or even conservatives.

    According to Is Progressive Ideology Incompatible With The First Amendment?, progressives, represented here by Seldman, would answer progressivism is incompatible with free speech.

    Yes.

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