Freedom of Speech, Censorship & Good Manners


First published on July 6, 2015

We now live in a country where our freedoms are being constantly limited on an almost daily basis.  Strangely enough, the very people who are demanding these freedoms are the very ones destroying them.  We’re not to say anything that might offend someone.  Idiots who want to fly the Confederate flag are being damned as racists. If a business owner doesn’t want to bake a wedding cake for someone, they can have their lives destroyed.  We’ve reached the point where one person’s freedoms are more important than are those of others.  Once upon a time, theoretically, everyone was to be equal.  Those days have come to an end.  Tragically, now, if a person is not part of some protected minority, they basically have no real rights.

You can’t say anything that might be misconstrued as racist.  You can’t ‘insult’ protected and favored groups.  If you do, you are labeled the practitioner of a hate crime. If you stand up for yourself, you are a minster.  Things today which are labeled as evil or racist were once considered bad manners.

Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 1.00.32 PMMaybe that’s the real problem here.  Our society has become so rude, crude, and miserable, no one has manners.  Good manners once said you didn’t say things that would hurt others.  It wasn’t the law.  It was about race, it was about being kind and knowing your place in the world.  People, decent people, just did not go around saying things which were hurtful. Oh, they did, but they were quite often marginalized by those around them.

People knew how to act.  They knew you did not go around using certain words.  Oh, there were some who did, but they were not considered socially acceptable.  They were considered crude and marginalized.  Civilized people did not go around waving Confederate flags at their minority neighbors because they knew it was hurtful, and insulting.

Where did our society go wrong?

Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 1.03.02 PMWe could blame it on the internet, but that’s just an excuse.  We could blame it on political correctness, but that’s just an excuse.  Let’s be honest.  Let’s blame ourselves.  No one even minds if a man or women have the table manners of pigs, don’t know how to act, and are nothing but crude renderings of  what decency once was.

I heard somewhere that a definition of good manners is knowing how to make other people feel comfortable.  Forget that.  Our society has managed to forget that we must treat others decently and make sure they are comfortable. Instead of fostering good manners, society now demands behavior modification.  We are to change the very way we speak and think, instead of learning how to treat others the way we wish to be treated.

Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 12.59.14 PMOur society is crumbling right before our very eyes.  People have become cruel, vindictive, and vicious.  They only think about themselves.  There is nothing wrong with someone harboring racist or bigoted sentiments or feelings if they do not act on them.  You cannot cleanse the brain of every person who does not hold the same values as do you.  You cannot demand they act in a certain way.  If we live in a society where people know how to act, and how to treat others, with manners, then it really doesn’t matter, does it?

Making demands on others, requiring that they behave in a certain way towards others, in a way in which you would have them to behave, is the consequence of the person making those demands having no manners or consideration for others.  It is the height of narcissistic selfishness to require people to do and act as YOU would have them behave.  It is also the height of narcissistic selfishness, to demand that society force those behaviors on people who have a right not to be forced.

Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 1.02.08 PMI don’t know about you, but I don’t like rude people, no matter their gender, race, religion, orientation, or station in life.  I don’t like being forced to associate or accept those who use and manipulate their minority status to demand they be given rights, perks, and status they would not deserve, otherwise.  I don’t like anyone who manipulates their status to push ahead of others, no matter how wealthy, white, or self-important they are.

Our society has become rude and coarse.  It is reflected in the bad table manners of the vast majority of those, even in power.  People have become pigs, not knowing how to act, behave, or treat others. If you don’t know how to treat others, properly, we have the situation the now are required to endure.  The government steps in and destroys everything.  When I read what had happened to the business owners who rudely refused to bake a wedding cake for a LGBT couple, I was sickened.  Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 1.02.27 PMWhat they did was nasty.  According to the law, they are required to render service to everyone, even if they are an independent business, and should be allowed to make asses of themselves.  What will make me a pariah, is in saying that the couple who were treated like dirt, have no moral right to destroy not only the business, but financial well-being of the jerks who refused them service.  Not only that, but they have been denied their First Amendment rights to even talk about what happened to them.  Only those they ‘injured’ have rights.  The thing is, if the bakery owners had been polite, and mannerly, and put the ‘golden rule’ of treating others as they wish to be treated, they would not be facing this debacle.  The other part of it is, it is morally wrong for the offended couple to destroy those who offended them.

If we treat others as we want to be treated, we wouldn’t need political correctness.  I think perhaps our culture has become so narcissistic it is beyond repair.   It is time for people to stop walking around with a chip on their shoulder, constantly offended.  Maybe it’s time for our culture to grow up a little.