Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Regulated rights are not violated rights

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Why is it that so many who likely agree that prohibiting people from making death threats or yelling “fire” in a crowded theater are reasonable limits to the First Amendment also believe that any restrictions on what firearms the masses should be allowed to tote are a violation of the Second Amendment? Ruben Bolling explores:

‘The NRA of counter-Earth's extremist view of the first amendment’ | the Tom the Dancing Bug Comic Strip (by Ruben Bolling)
by Ruben Bolling

Transcript: (click the [+/-] to open/close →) []

‘The NRA of counter-earth's extremist view of the first amendment’ | Tom the Dancing Bug (by Ruben Bolling)

There circles the sun another Earth, a Counter-Earth, whose diametrically opposed orbit keeps it forever beyond our detection.

Let us explore this strange world that is not quite the opposite of our own… but somewhat dissimilar in certain ways!

CAPTION: On Counter-Earth, the National Rhetoric Association (NRA) pushes an extreme interpretation of the First Amendment.

NRA SPOKESMAN VERNES PETERS: Our Founding Fathers gave us "freedom of speech," and any limitation is an affront to America's values. And by the way… FIRE!

CAPTION: Yet the pro-gun lobby is utterly powerless.

PRO-GUN SPOKESMAN: But we have the "Right to Bear Arms"!

JUDGE: What part of "well regulated militia" don't you understand, you bed-wetter?

PRO-GUN SPOX: Hey, that's slanderous!


PETERS: Free speech means free, no matter what harm could result. You can't stop me from saying that the launch codes for a U.S. nuclear attack are B39TJD882X…

AUDIENCE: Gasp! Stop!!

AUDIENCE: If there are no limits on speech, people will be killed!

PETERS: Words don't kill people! Various traumas to the body kill people!

PETERS: The solution to someone yelling "fire" in a crowded theater is not prohibiting that speech. It's hiring fact-checkers in every theater. FIRE!

FACT-CHECKER: Hmm… I'm giving that outburst three and a half "Pinocchios"!

Legal rights and protections are not universal guarantees, and nor should they be. There are reasonable exceptions to any rule, and anyone who opposes that is, by definition, unreasonable (and most likely some sort of fundamentalist zealot).

(via Political Irony)