you do not have an inherent right to free speech


you do not have an inherent right to free speech

the only right that you have is the right to your property. property can consist of anything that you have acquired through voluntary means, including your own body, your socks, your car, your home and land (if you own them), your snuggie, or your dog, etc.

i get the strong impression, because of recent statements made by A&E television stars, that people think that there is a right to say whatever you want, whenever you want, without any consequences. the problem stems from a misunderstanding of the phrase “free speech”. the whole free speech thing derives from the idea that, according to the u.s. constitution, the government cannot punish or forcibly silence anyone:

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.

outside of the relationship of citizens to government, the “right to free speech” is completely meaningless. in the real world, you only have the right to use your property as you see fit as long as it doesn’t infringe on the ability of others to do the same. if you are in another person’s home, you may legitimately be kicked out for saying anything that offends the homeowner. conversely, if someone comes into your home and says things that offend you, you have the right to remove them from your home. that should be obvious. if people say things that offend you anywhere in the world, you have the right to stop associating with that person and vice versa. if you are making offensive statements, a business has a right to end their association with you. similarly, if you are making offensive statements on the property of a business, the owner has the right to refuse to do business with you and remove you from the premises and likewise with your own business.

the key in all of the examples above is property. you have no right to the property of others and, consequently, you have no right to do what you wish with the property of others. so, if you use your property (making offensive statements with your mouth) in a way that infringes on the property of others (making those statements in someone else’s business, home, etc) you may be legitimately discriminated against.

many people (hopefully the vast majority) who read this will respond with, “duh!”, but i felt compelled to elucidate for what seems like many people who haven’t grasped this concept. so, if your favorite t.v. star makes statements that land him in hot water with his associates, don’t scream out “whatever happened to free speech!”. it only makes you look foolish.

Conceptual logician, libertarian philosopher, musician, economist, almost-ran businessman and other stuff.
Back To Top