We see it everyday in social media, political or religious posts from one far side to the other. During football season, the NFL players and their peaceful protest regarding the National Anthem was most talked about week after week. What should we think about these conflicting opinions?
It is an arena where beliefs clash with rights, language gets murky in the face of feelings, and judgment prevails.
Beliefs Aren’t Amendments Or Laws
Beliefs are merely feelings, which over time have morphed into habits or ways of doing. When someone in a powerful political position feels that there is only one way to exhibit respect; it limits the freedoms of those who choose to express it differently. The first Amendment prohibits the government from imposing limits on free speech. The distinction in the language of the first Amendment is clear:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Congress has not made a law abridging the freedom of speech; but for some Americans debating the NFL players’ protest, it’s good enough that the President of the United States said so.
For some, siding with the POTUS means siding with the USA, and anyone who disagrees is, frankly, un-American. This, too is a belief. It’s simply not true. It has nothing to do with whom anyone voted for or politics in general… it’s pure judgment.
It’s ‘the way I express respect is right and the way you do it is wrong.’ It’s my-way-is-the-right-way. If it’s imposed on someone else, it’s not independence. It’s not liberty. It’s not freedom.
Who Has The Right To Say What Our Beliefs Should Be
In our quest to ‘Make America Great Again’, let’s remember to embrace the differences that insure domestic Tranquility that the Preamble established. Let’s adopt the verbiage of the Constitution as it was written.
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