Measured Against Reality

Friday, September 21, 2007

Why we have to let Ahmadinejad visit the WTC

These stories about the furor over Ahmadinejad wanting to lay a wreath at ground zero are ridiculous. Absolutely, totally ridiculous. For the sake of argument, let's just say the Iran really is as evil as the rhetoric suggests (which I highly doubt), that they export terrorism and help build IEDs in Iraq and all that jazz (which again, I doubt is all true, and is kind of funny given that not a single 911 hijacker was Iranian). Even after all that, he should still be allowed to lay his wreath.

Why? BECAUSE THIS IS A FREE COUNTRY!

Seriously people, do you value free speech or not? Do you value freedom of expression or not? Do you value the right to go what you want and do what you want or do you not? You can't have it both ways. You can't have freedom of speech and deny holocaust deniers their right to speak. You can't have freedom of assembly and deny the KKK marching permits. You can't have freedom while restricting other people's freedoms.

Granted, he isn't a citizen. But so what? Are we fighting for freedom or not? Because denying a foreign dignitary the right to visit a site that any American is free to visit is just insane (I'm assuming that Americans are in fact free to visit Ground Zero, I haven't been there and can't find any contrary or confirmatory information). Let him lay his wreath! Let him pay his respects! Even if he actually intends to dishonor the memory of the dead (which I personally doubt), so what? We are so much stronger, so much better than that. As a country, are we really so weak that we can't even take one person mocking a terrible tragedy? Is our skin really that thin, our confidence that depleted? Even if he intends to dishonor us, we should let him, because in allowing him to dishonor us, we are honoring everything this country stands for, we are proving our strength!

And telling Columbia not to allow him to speak is ludicrous. His opinions are just as worthy of expression as anyone else's, even if they're wrong, even if they're hateful, even if they're bigoted. Again, we are better than this! Words do not hurt us! We can beat the spread of hate, bigotry, and untruth with the perfect truth. Let him speak his piece regardless of his opinions, and then utterly destroy his untruths (if he even utters any).

I just can't fathom the narrow-minded people who would rather dictate what a man can do that let him perform actions or say words that they don't like. For the last time, are we really that weak? Have we fallen that far from our ideals?

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3 Comments:

  • I thought Christians were supposed to forgive, turn the other cheek?

    It seems they only remember the eye for an eye thing.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:01 PM, September 21, 2007  

  • The Constitution of The United States does not ONCE mention the word CITIZEN; it speaks often of THE PEOPLE.

    We must NEVER assert, or even intimate, that rights only belong to citizens. Rights belong to people.

    THAT'S what The Constitution of The United States makes absolutely clear.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:07 AM, September 22, 2007  

  • The invitation to Columbia University is a fine example of providing freedom of speech. If they want to open their doors, and listen to his hateful tripe - so be it. I just won't listen.

    I don't agree with giving him the opportunity for a photo-op while he pays respect to his 19 buddies that were on the planes. Nope. No problem limiting access to that Al Jazeera dream. Unless - you let everyone show up and "Express" themselves at the same time.

    Kyle - Fred08.us

    By Blogger kyle, at 10:49 AM, September 22, 2007  

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