Friday, February 23, 2007

Freedom of Speech

I'm Emily, and Anitra has invited me to "blog" here. I'll just introduce myself with the first thing I wrote for StreetWrites:

Freedom of Speech allows any person to criticize what is said or done by anyone who has put himself in a leadership role or position of influence, enabling that leader to affect the lives of any or all life over which he has power. Oppression is the cruel or unjust exercise of power or authority, which creates unnecessary burden, damages the human spirit, strips away human dignity, and chisels at the stone of personal empowerment. If freedom of speech is taken by reprisal, recrimination, or punishment when a person speaks concerning how a leader is harmfully affecting innocent life, especially the most vulnerable, the leader is oppressing the speaker and possibly others for whom he or she may be speaking.

In my opinion, we have been losing our freedom of speech as a nation. I have observed and heard a kind of collective intimidation and silence, which only makes things easier for oppressors to continue on their self-seeking, destructive paths. They really do seem to need those who are being harmed, mentally, spiritually, socially, physically, or financially, to just be quiet. Those who speak out are treated like pesky, commoner troublemakers.

Freedom of speech may be hindered or denied in homes, in schools, in work places, in social service agencies, in medical services, or within community, city, state, or national political arenas. We must not give in to bullies of any kind who demand that we shut up when we have a reasonable concern to express. A crucial freedom is at stake. Encourage one another to speak up about SPEAKING UP.

E. Francisca

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