Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Let Freedom Ring

UMass First Amendment Rally

The demonstration showing support for the right of free speech at UMass today was a big success! The president of the UMass Republican Club spoke:

As did the president of the UMass Democrat Club, with both sides united behind the principle of free expression for all.

The crowd wasn't huge, but it was still a solid turnout considering the dreary weather.

Shannon Hegy and a WGGB TV40 camera crew was there.

So was student media in the form of reporter S.P. Sullivan.

Representing the internet was Amherst's blog king Larry Kelley.

Some of the same protesters that disrupted the Don Feder speech last month appeared at the rally with signs, but aside from a few catcalls they were respectful of those who spoke.

Here's a little video of the scene.

In all it was a good public reaffirmation of the principle of free speech, and hopefully will help to insure that no disruptions of public forums will occur in the future.

April Foolin'

Greetings and salutations on the Feast of Fools! Today's UMass Collegian was transformed into The Morning Wood.

Their slogan: "The First Thing You Grab in The Morning."


Someone took pink spray paint and wrote THE BRAIN RADIATES VERIZON KILLZ X0 on the Verizon building in downtown Northampton.

I wonder how long that will stay up.

Dead Toons

Here is a cartoon from a 1985 issue of Relix Magazine.
(click to enlarge)

Today's Video

Some of the world's best music is being made in bedrooms.


Emily said...

Wonderful expression of the love of liberty. Congratulations UMass!

LarryK4 said...

And since John Stuart Mill is long since dead, who exactly is going to become the referee deciding on a "case-by-case basis" what speech is legit?

Don Schneier said...

So, Larry, because they are dead, Newton's and Einstein's theories of Physics are wrong? Go jump off a roof, and let's see how wrong that theory of Gravitation has turned out to be.

LarryK4 said...

Of course let's not talk about the dead guys who said the Atom bomb would "never go off" (Admiral William Leahy), or running experts who claimed the 4 minute mile could never be broken or the sound barrier was unbreakable and, more recently, the Internet was just a passing fad.

Yeah I agree, occasionally you can yell "FIRE" in a movie theatre--when there's a freakin fire.

So do you agree with the nitwit HCC professor who thinks it is perfectly fine for an unruly mob to swarm into a public meeting and use their First Amendment rights in chorus to shut down a paid invited speaker that they happen to disagree with (even though a 'Question and Answer Period' appeared on the agenda)?

Don Schneier said...

Larry, you are missing the point. The reference to Mill was basically for the information of the readers of this blog who fancy themselves to be 'Libertarians' and/or advocates of 'Free Speech'. No judgment of my own on that principle was either offered or intended. But the fact that Mill is dead is no argument against that principle, and, rather than taking armchair potshots at it, try to come up with something better.

LarryK4 said...

Okay, forget the fact that Mill is dead.

My very simply question still remains, to you the freakin living: Is it okay for an unruly mob of Nitwits to shout down a paid (therefor one can infer professional) aging Jewish guy simply because they do not like what he has to say???

And that of course begs the question: how do they know what he's going to say if they don't allow him the courtesy of having his say?

Ed said...

Wonderful expression of the love of liberty. Congratulations UMass

I am assuming that this means the first half of the afternoon and not the second, when the same folk who shouted down Feder bullied their way up onto the podium for their rally and stole 200 copies of a student newspaper literally right out of my hands in spite of there being a police officer standing there watching.

That, I consider to be rather disgusting.

Sooner or later the middle will cease to hold. Thomas Hobbes spoke of life in such a "state of nature" as being "boorish, brutal and above all else, brief."

Do we have rules against taking things that aren't yours by force or do we not? It really is that simple...