Rebuttal is part of free speech

In this new era when hate speech has approval to be expressed publicly, a Sacramento Brewery owner discovered that free expression comes with a price. According to The Sacramento Bee, three co-owners of Red Rabbit Restaurant gave up their minority ownership in Twelve Rounds Brewing after brewery founder, Dan Murphy, on Facebook railed against the Women’s March.

Murphy  wrote: “I am disgusted at all of the people and politicians that supported this anti-Trump event. … I am especially disgusted with the politicians who supported this divisive event. Time to vote all these pieces of garbage out of office.”

We all have free speech rights. Unlike in some other countries we cannot be jailed for ranting against the government (unless of course we threaten someone) or for expressing a point of view. This is why we have the Tea Party, the KKK and Black Lives Matter for example. However, we need to be aware that what we say comes with consequences. If we publicly rant against say a Women’s March, we need to understand that people do not have to say “Ok” and do nothing; that they are free to rant against our view as well. That could mean verbal rebuttal or taking their business elsewhere. If the views expressed result in strong rebuke then one needs to realize that perhaps those views are not for everyone. Perhaps those views are better kept to ourselves.

As the saying goes: Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.


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