How Much Longer WIll We Dare to Dissent?

A few years ago, I prided myself on being a model citizen. If the law said I should not cross the street against the light, or in the middle of the block, I religiously waited for the light to change or marched myself to the corner before attempting to navigate the space between curbs. It was a small price to pay for being an American citizen who had freedom of speech.

If I accidentally stepped on a patch of grass before I noticed the warning to, “Keep Off,” I kept a nervous eye over my shoulder all the way home, and anxiously hoped not to hear the dreaded wail of a siren telling me that I would have to face the music for my misdeed, after all. But, even if I did, I was still an American citizen blessed with the wonderful privilege of freedom of speech.

Whenever I read a clearly posted 55 mile an hour free-way sign, I assumed it meant what it said, and took care not to exceed 55 on that particular stretch of highway. Should a police car happen to pull onto the road any-where within my view, I froze, and drove like a robot until he had passed me and faded from sight. But, even if I had received a ticket, I was still a citizen of the most wonderful country in the world; the United States of America, where every citizen has freedom of speech.

As the years went by, I loosened up a bit. After all, I didn’t want to be labeled a legalist, one of those horrible people who are so strict about obeying the letter of the law that they often overlook its spirit. I was sure I could be just as flexible as the next person. So long, that is, as no one tried to take away my right to freedom of speech.

Unfortunately, I have recently observed deep inroads being made upon that right we have taken for granted for so long. Inroads, for the most part, being made by a group of people known as the politically correct. Whenever this group announces that we can no longer say or think a certain thing, the masses follow as sheep to the slaughter. I believe, I am sorry to say, that our cherished right to speak our minds is on the way out.

Now, I must say that I haven’t actually met anyone willing to admit that he or she was a part of the PCP. (Politically Correct Police.) The group doesn’t seem to have a head office, anywhere. There’s no phone number to call and object to what they are doing, but their influ-ence continues to spread, like a cancer detected only after hideous damage is done. Unfortunately, political incorrectness only applies to those who disagree with what has been deemed politically correct.

Recently, in a mid-western state, a school principal decided that the Christmas art work of a young girl could not be displayed along with that of her classmates on the classroom window because she had written, “Happy Birthday, Jesus” on a big heart. According to the PCP, a passer-by might think that the school was supporting Christianity. The same school could, however, display artwork about Jewish holidays, witchcraft, cults, and eastern religions, as these would simply be depictions of diversity. Christianity, for some reason, did not qualify as diversity.

An artist’s mural of Malcolm X at a college in California was ordered removed because it portrayed a bias against Jews. Wouldn’t you think that college students are old enough to realize that paintings are the expressions of particular artists, not standards for students to live by?

A few Indians, oops, I mean Native Americans, have demanded that athletic teams around the country stop using team names such as Redskins, Braves, Chieftans, etc. Such labels are considered derogatory, and, therefore, politically incorrect. I would have thought they were an honor. Oh, well. What do I know?

Some militant homosexual groups, in their under-ground newspapers once advocated donating blood to spread the aids virus, as a means of forcing the government to do more toward finding a cure for that disease. They screamed discrimination when accused by non-gay groups of doing so. They could print it in their papers, but we could not quote them.

A while back, the National Endowment for the Arts agreed to fund three gay and lesbian film festivals, at a cost of $17,500. How far do you think the Christian Coalition headed by Pat Robertson would get if they asked for the same amount to establish a museum for Christian art?

According to Dr. James Dobson in an issue of Focus On The Family, members of the Hamilton Square Baptist Church in San Francisco were physically attacked by Act-Up and Queer Nation gay-activist group members who surrounded the church screaming obscenities and roughing up people who tried to attend the service. Their excuse – the speaker for the service planned to speak against the gay life-style. And they complain about us?

Our government, who supposedly stands behind our right to free speech, actually passed a law making it a felony to attempt to stop the killing of unborn babies at an abortion clinic. Imagine what would happen if we decided to set up a clinic to rid our society of undesirable teen-agers, rapists, or murderers? Or supposing we just decided to punish them with a few good whacks from a good old Singaporian bamboo cane? What a hullaballo would break out! That just wouldn’t be politically correct, but killing unborn babies is.

Not all, but many things labeled as politically incorrect have to do with fundamental Christianity. Doesn’t it seem strange that many of the very people who look down on Christianity, and pronounce it a ridiculous myth, should spend their whole lives, and untold millions of dollars in an attempt to eradicate it from the world?

The next time you find yourself in the midst of a group of young women, try mentioning that you are going to attend a rally to protest abortion on demand. You’ll wish you’d brought your pepper spray. They will attack you like pirhannas.

And watch the room temperature change when you say you are planning to join the march for Jesus at the end of June. Even if your listeners have just purchased 4 tickets to hear a scummy rock band, you, not they, will, immediately, become an “untouchable.”

Want some real adventure? Start telling a non-Christian you work with about your experience with the Lord. At the very least, you will probably be told cooly, “Religion is personal. I don’t want to hear about it.” Well, I have always considered one’s sex life a pretty personal subject, too, but that doesn’t seem to keep co-workers and other acquaintences from bombarding you with every little detail of theirs. If you persist in discussing religion in any way, you will probably be accused of cramming religion down their throats, even though they may drive you to distraction blabbing away about their own consuming interests, or trying to change your stand on abortion, homosexuality, and any number of other beliefs you hold dear. You may even find yourself charged with violating another party’s civil rights, and end up being sued for exercising what you thought was your own civil right, that of freedom of speech .

Religion is the only subject I know of, that can bring on so much righteous indignation in such a short period of time.

Now, I don’t mind a little jeering or ostracism. A little sincere ridicule doesn’t bother me a bit, although I must admit that I usually bail out when real stones start flying. I believe that the party who disagrees with me, also has his right to free speech, but I don’t think the government should have any part in what either of us chooses to say. Very soon, I am afraid, only those who disagree with moralists and traditional Christians are going to be allowed to express an opinion.

The other day, I read a quotation from the writings of former Supreme Court Justice, Felix Frankfurter who said:

“Those who begin coercive elimination of dissent soon find themselves exterminating dissenters.” I hope he was wrong, don’t you?

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