A shocking new poll from the Campaign For Free Speech (CFS) finds that majority of Americans want to see the First Amendment rewritten to increase restrictions on free speech.
According to the poll, 51 percent of Americans believe the First Amendment “is outdated and should be rewritten.” Can you wrap your head around that?
The poll also found that nearly half (48 percent) say “hate speech” should be illegal. Of those who say “hate speech” should be illegal, “about half think the punishment for ‘hate speech’ should include possible jail time, while the rest think it should just be a ticket and a fine.” What defines “hate speech,” you ask? There’s no definitive standard, but let me ask you, how many times have you said something that triggered a liberal and you were accused of “hate speech” in some fashion? My books are regularly accused of being racist by the left for being critical of Barack Obama. So, when people start talking about punishing “hate speech,” my first thought is “who gets to define what hate speech is?”
Inevitably, such a process of defining hate speech would go to the government. Do you remember the Obama years when Democrats repeatedly accused Republicans of being racist for wanting to investigate Obama or for opposing his agenda? Can you imagine them being responsible for defining what “hate speech” is?
And what about churches and other religious institutions that believe homosexuality is a sin, would the government punish them for “hate speech”? That idea is actually not so far fetched. Beto O’Rourke actually promised he would revoke the tax-exempt status of religious organizations that oppose same-sex marriage.
This poll is alarming, not just because of the results, but because of how these Orwellian concepts are becoming mainstream in the Democratic Party. How does this happen? It’s clear that American ideals are not being properly taught in schools, and young people are becoming increasingly unable to cope with opposing views. You can’t express a contrary opinion without being labeled a bigot by somebody.
That’s the slippery slope of restricting offensive speech from First Amendment protections. Too many people don’t realize what the purpose of the First Amendment is, and once you start arguing that “hate speech” shouldn’t be protected, the question “What is hate speech?” makes it inevitable that eventually your right to criticize the government could be taken away easily.
“You support Donald Trump? You must be a bigot and put in jail!”
“You don’t support same-sex marriage? That’s a year of sensitivity training for you!”
“You’ve misgendered me! That’s a $10,000 fine!”
Don’t laugh, because this isn’t as far-fetched as you think. As I said before, these ideas are becoming mainstream in the Democratic Party.
Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis