Monday, February 10, 2014

Free-speech absolutist

I think that I would read Mark Steyn with pleasure on any subject – from aardvarks to zithers – but his passionate essays in defense of free speech truly stir the mind and heart. He is our Cato the Younger, tenacious and incorruptible, tirelessly revealing the evil at the center of authoritarian progressivism; however, unlike the somber Cato, he adds a heaping measure of humor to his criticisms, which makes him a refreshingly happy warrior – one who is not likely to succumb to the despair that ultimately overwhelmed the Roman politician.

Here he writes:
It takes all sorts to make a world and I've met a lot of them over the years, and I can stand pretty much anything anyone says about anything — until someone says to me, "You can't say that." At which point my inclination is to punch his lights out. I do this not just because I'm a violent psychopath with a hair-trigger temper, but to make the important point that in societies where you're not free to speak your mind — to argue and debate — the only way to express disagreement is through violence.
As is well known, Mark Steyn is the target of a lawsuit filed by the absurd climate alarmist, Michael Mann. Steyn cried “fiddlesticks!” to Mann’s hockey stick, and the Nobel non-laureate, rather than debating Steyn, is seeking to shut him up. If we possessed a justice system in this country that did not, in effect, serve as the equivalent of the Lawyers’ Full Employment Act, I believe Mann would have been summarily ordered to take his hockey stick and go home a long time ago. Alas, we now live in a world where legal procedures represent, not so much a decision tree, as a decision kudzu vine, so God alone knows what the ultimate verdict will be, or even whether one will be reached in our lifetimes. One doesn’t have to be omniscient, though, to imagine the expense involved, so you can help Mark out by shopping at his online bookstore.


Anonymous said...

We have the same forces at work here but as an Australian, who has enormous respect for America, I have to say that your legal system is going to kill your democracy, to all our detriment.

Nashville Beat said...

Recently bought two of his books. They arrived promptly and were even signed. Definitely worth the money in all respects.