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Free speech and boycotts(74 posts)

Free speech and boycottsPdxMark
Apr 11, 2003 9:58 AM
I find it ironic that people here say they support free speech, but will boycott with a vengence anyone who states a contrary opinion. Like say the Dixie Chicks.

These free speech boycotters raise a difference of opinion to almost a war-like level of conflict. Free speech boycotters will burn Dixie Chicks CDs while pumping Iragi gasoline into their pick-up trucks. What sense is that? Who is the real enemy? Apparently it's any American who disagrees with a Republican President.

Yes, free speech boycotters have the right to economically and verbally attack with a venegence anyone they disagree with. But organized economic boycotts seem wildly disprortionate to a contrary STATEMENT of opinion. Contrast that with boycotts based on someone's ACTIONS - unfair labor practices, despoiling natural areas, etc.

I think free speech boycotters don't actually support free speech. I think they wrap themselves in lip service to American ideals, but don't actually believe or live them.
so right!mohair_chair
Apr 11, 2003 10:08 AM
I see it on all sides of the political spectrum. It all comes down to a simple maxim: Free speech is great, as long as you are saying what I want to hear. If not, you must be punished or silenced.

This is usually followed by "free speech has consequences!" which is basically a threat in my book. Whenever I hear that, what I really hear is "you will be punished for speaking your mind." It's not supposed to work that way.
so, what about all the heat C Heston has taken? nmDougSloan
Apr 11, 2003 10:10 AM
what about it?mohair_chair
Apr 11, 2003 10:25 AM
Heston is not a great example, because he is an entertainment celebrity AND the leader of a highly political organization. He has basically made himself a target, which is an unintended play on words, now that I think about it. He also hasn't done a lot of work lately.

Taking heat is different than being the subject of a boycott. I don't think people are boycotting Heston movies, although they should, because they are typically pretty bad, except for "Touch of Evil," which is great.

I don't support any attempts to silence people through boycotts, regardless of who they are or who they represent. I do think that anyone should be able to speak out against whoever or whatever and express their displeasure or disagreement. But to take that further and say, let's make sure he knows we disagree with him by affecting his bottom line, or running him out of business, or running him out of town, I think is essentially the equivalent of a lynch mob.

Free speech is supposed to be debate. You say your thoughts, I say mine, maybe we come to an agreement, maybe we don't.
Heat is fine...PdxMark
Apr 11, 2003 10:29 AM
and he deserves it, of course, but I love my Big Country DVD, and even his acting in it. Especially towards the end when he has a new-found respect for Gregory Peck... I don't know of boycotts of him... but if there are boycotts, my opinion would apply to those boycotters too.
The funny thing is, the last thing I rememberOldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:43 AM
us boycotting is grapes. Back in '68. There may have been some since, I'm sure there are; but I certainly don't recall any leftist, anywhere, for any reason whatsoever, rearing up on his/her hind legs and saying "We MUST destroy this entertainer who said bad things." It just seems so ... petty. Unless, of course, you're the entertainer being detroyed.
OT: Last I heard that grape boycott was still in effect. . .czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 10:59 AM
. . .albeit this was in a stutdent led course on the Labor Movement back in '98.
{{ Sound of OldEd spitting out grape pit }}}OldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 11:01 AM
http://www.boycott-republicans.com/DougSloan
Apr 11, 2003 10:09 AM
Yes, it's real: http://www.boycott-republicans.com/

I can't even recall all the times groups called for boycotts of the sponsors of the Rush Limbaugh program, and solely because of his political statements. This is both normal and generally accepted in America, as far as I know.

This happens everywhere on the political spectrum.

Doug
A boycott is the free-speech equivilent of "I disagree"TJeanloz
Apr 11, 2003 10:09 AM
Freedom of speech isn't a license to say anything you want without repercussion from private citizens. There is no reason I should support somebody, or some corporation, that has views contrary to my own. It isn't disagreement with the President, it's disagreement with me. If we want to use the Dixie Chicks example, Natalie Maynes comes out and says something that I disagree with. I don't have the same stage that she has to say: "I disagree with Ms. Maynes." So I use my wallet to speak louder than my voice can. She shouldn't care -- it's my right not to buy her CD, just as it's hers to insult the President. I think that's the epitome of exercising free speach on both sides.
No it's not...PdxMark
Apr 11, 2003 10:37 AM
An organized boycott is an attack, not a disagreement. I agree that you have the right to not buy her Cds, or smash the ones you have - the full set, right? :)

But launching organized boycotts over isolated statements amounts to a disproprtionate escalation in political discussion - a scorched-earth economic club to wield over the expression of ideas and opinions. Anyone has the right to boycott, of course, but as a tool of organized action in a political discussion context it shows a profound lack of respect for freedom of speech.
Hmm, I bet somebody can think of a good example,TJeanloz
Apr 11, 2003 10:41 AM
I see your point, but an organized boycott is the only way that the contrary voice can be loud enough for Natalie Maynes to hear. How is an organized boycott different from an organized protest? I mean, should the 15,000 people on the streets of Boston just work alone to have their individual voices heard?
I think you're slightly missing the point.OldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:48 AM
WHY is it OK for simple political expression to bring the wrath of God down on you? Someone called it a lynch mob mentality, and it really is. There no proportionality here. You don't drop an A-bomb on a sniper.
That is an interesting point,TJeanloz
Apr 11, 2003 10:59 AM
See, I don't view a boycott as the wrath of God. In fact, I view deprivation of finances as about the least damaging thing you can do to a person. We aren't calling for inprisonment, death, torture, or anything like that -- all we're doing is not continuing to financially support someone who doesn't share our values; and may be using our financial support to further a cause that we disagree with. But I think a boycott is the tamest of all possible responses.
These folks just seem more virulent about itOldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 11:06 AM
than the 'offense' deserves. No matter how you frame it, it's the equivalent of running someone out of town because they expressed an opinion. Do it if you want, it's certainly your right. Seems pretty sh!tty though. I don't see how these folks can be proud of themselves.

But them I'm a ... what is it I am, Live Steam? (Hilarious namecalling and vitriol to follow) :-}}
I haven't called you any namesLive Steam
Apr 11, 2003 11:23 AM
YET! :O)

I just think that many from the political Left are very hypocritical in their positions. They boycott corporations when that adgenda suits their particular needs, but resent it when it is contrary to thier position. I do not see the difference between the boycott of the DC and the boycott of tuna fish from certain sources. Well maybe I should change that as music generally has some message to convey, whereas tuna fish is just smelly. The DC may choose to convey their contrarian views in their lyrics, so it would be natural for those that oppose their views, to boycott. I think it makes perfect sense. Don't you?
Your perception of hypocracy. . .czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 11:50 AM
. . .seems to be based on your thin aprehension of the Left's positions. There is a difference between boycotting something in response to disagreement with its effects, and boycotting something in response to disagreement with the opinions of people associated with it.

People don't boycott tuna because it is smelly. They boycott tuna because of the industries impact on dolphins.

While it is true that Music can convey a message, the message that people are so angry about is not conveyed by the Dixie Chick's music. I am not familiar with their music, but from what I have heard it tends to reinforce the values of their persecutor-come-latelys.
Your perception of hypocracy. . .Live Steam
Apr 11, 2003 12:04 PM
The smelly remark was sarcastic. Tuna sources are boycotted because of the methods they employ endanger dolphins.

My aprehension of the Left is not thin, it is real. I think you used the wrong word, but that is just my opinion :O) As for my analogy, I believe it was appropriate. The DC are selling music and a message and the canning company is selling tuna. If you don't agree with their methods and means, don't buy their products. When the DC use a public platform to express their views, they are putting a product out their - it may be a free product when offered this way, but it was unsolicited and made available in a public forum.

Not buying a DC CD or tossing one you already own is like not voting for a particular candidate or voting for the alternate candidate. Your vote will not only reduce that persons voice in the political arena, but it will also deprive them of a job. Yes elected officials are paid.
My money, why should it help causes I don't agree with?TJeanloz
Apr 11, 2003 12:04 PM
If I'm pro-President Bush, why would I want to financially support his opponents? We might presume that Ms. Maynes is going to contribute financially to the political aspirations of those who oppose the President. So, why would I want to give her money, which furthers her position in life (if their records stop selling, they fall off the face of the Earth), and furthers opposition to the tenets that I hold near and dear. It's one thing to voice an opinion. It's another to fund somebody's virulent opposition to something that you support.
That's a good point.czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 12:12 PM
I didn't see how tolerating the Dixie Chick's point of veiw represented any threat to your oppposing point of view. But, I guess that if the Dixie Chicks are financing Bush's opponents, then you are right to withhold your money from them.

Of course, you may have to clean out a fair portion of your entertainment library. But first, you'd need another McCarthyite inquisition into the political loyalties of our entertainment figures to make sure that you only support those who echo your near and dear tenets.

Or, you could just enjoy their brand of bland, apolitical music for whatever it was that you saw in it in the first place.
That's a good point.Live Steam
Apr 11, 2003 12:28 PM
This is the reason so many people are upset with Hollywood. No one asked them for their opinion. That was the basis for my post about not talking politics or religion with someone you don't want to offend. You never know what you may say that would do that. The same applies here.

I don't recall who it is, but a member of a 70s band, but anyway I think it is the drummer who is a war historian and expert on warfare, is actually consulting the Armed Services Committee or some government agency. I have to do a little research, but I remember being shocked at this revelation. A rock musician that is pro war? Well I know that Ted Nugent is pro war. Oh I hope none of you stop buying his albums :O)
Nobody cared about Hollywood's opinion.czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 12:34 PM
It was laughed off as irrelevant -- until a few started disagreeing with Bush. Now, all of a sudden, people are making their entertainment decisions based on the politics of the artist? Seems silly to me.
Nobody cared about Hollywood's opinion.Live Steam
Apr 11, 2003 12:42 PM
When was it laughed off as irrelevant? The remarks attributed to those cited here today, were made at orchestrated rallies. In fact many of the rallies were orchestrated by the subject celebrities. They were political events. Why would one assume that these events would not draw dissent from the opposing side? An why would one assume that the voices for these events would not meat the same opposition? Garofolo, Azner et al were making the talk show circuit, just to put forth these views. Sean Penn made his into a documentary.
It got a bit confusing. . .czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 12:54 PM
. . .when the war-monger crowd declared that the opinion of anyone who was opposed to the war was irrelevant.

Still, I got the distinct impression that people felt that celebrities were in no position to offer an informed opinion about politics, and that these opinions were largely ignored by anyone with any sense. Now, the same people are tripping over themselves to use their wallets to gag any celebrity that voices an opinion that they disagree with.

So, are celebrities merely self-important clowns in love with the sound of their own irrelevant voices? Or are their opinions important enough to warrant mass opposition?

FYI, the Dixie Chicks statement was not made at an orchestrated rally. It was an impromptu statement made during a concert. (I'm not sure if they were touring with an orchestra.)
I haven't heard that from war-mongerspurplepaul
Apr 11, 2003 1:10 PM
but I think what many find galling is that celebrities often seem so irrelevent, yet they have a huge audience. Many are vapid, yet they're preaching as if they're experts and some fans tend to listen more because celebrities are, for some reason, uber-respected.

To beat a dead horse, I think the reaction to the DC was as strong as it was because the pro-war crowd thought it was important to show respect for (not necessarily solidarity with) the president at a particularly dangerous time for our country. I also believe that many saw the DC as being typically hypocritical as performers for saying it in another country, but not here. It felt like they were pandering.

Not important enough to get our panties all in a bunch, IMO.
What if the statement was different...TJeanloz
Apr 11, 2003 1:14 PM
What if Natalie Maines, instead of saying that she was embarrassed that Bush was from Texas, said that she was embarrassed that so many Muslims lived in Texas? Free speech, right? She's just voicing her political opinion.

Or what if Trent Lott says something that isn't sensitive. Free speech, right? He shouldn't suffer any consequences, merely for voicing his opinion -- we should wait for some actions.

The core of the Hollywood debate is that Hollywood, at all levels, is driven by ratings. The wallet is the approval that the entertainment industry lives and dies by (just ask Fox News). A boycott is the absolute best way to voice your opposition to the industry.
What if the statement was different...purplepaul
Apr 11, 2003 1:21 PM
I guess it seems to make a difference that one target holds tremendous power while another is looked at as being in need of protection. That's an interesting dichotomy and one that various segments of the population have been using, sometimes at their own peril, for decades. In other words, it feels intolerant to criticize Muslims in Texas, but who really feels that Bush is threatened by what the DC said?

I wonder what the reaction would have been if our president happened to be from a (protected) minority group?
A-<i>Ha!</i>czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 2:20 PM
I agree. The equation of a racist statment with one of political dissent is typical of false analogies that many people use to justify their hypocrisy. Once again, the devil is in the details.

If the Dixie Chicks had criticized a minority president (assuming it was an otherwise race neutral statement), a few ultra PC types would falsely castigate them for racism. But even more charges of racism would come from people who disagreed with the politics of the statement and were disingenuously playing the race card as an additional stick to bash the Dixie Chicks with.
No argument there.purplepaul
Apr 11, 2003 3:06 PM
That's how people on both sides discredit themselves.
Good morning, will that be the 5 minute or the 15 min. argument?rwbadley
Apr 11, 2003 9:14 PM
Causes or people?PdxMark
Apr 11, 2003 12:23 PM
Certainly, none of us should support a cause we disagree with. I suppose that engaging in commerce with a person you disagree with indirectly supports causes that you disagree with... by giving them the financial resources to support their favorite causes.

But this suggests that one would apply a political litmus test to all commercial transactions. Some people certainly do. And actually I can understand that as a regular and consistent application of one's beliefs - far left liberals, christians, whoever....

But my point here is that it seems disproportionate to organize a boycott based on mere words... The Dixie Chicks are the good example, so to speak, because there seemed to be just one statement that triggered the boycott. Unlike Sarandon and Robbins who are recidivist Liberals (which is a Red Flag for some), the Dixie Chicks comment was virtually out of the blue (as far as I understand it). That's what makes it an interesting situation.

I agree, it makes perfect sense not to fund opposition to something you support. But is "opposition" any person who disagrees with what you support? A statement of opinion doesn't seem to me to rise to the level of "opposition." A boycott in that case sounds more like intolerance of dissent - free speech itself - than simply not funding an opposing cause.
No it's not...Live Steam
Apr 11, 2003 10:57 AM
So I guess PETA and all of the tree-hugging wackos fall into the category of intolerant zealots who trust and respect no opinion other than their own?
Rush? Rush, is that you?OldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:59 AM
Get an IP address on this man!
No it's not...Pygme
Apr 15, 2003 7:18 PM
Your statement is illogical, if not moronic.

First off, I reject your premise of "isolated statements" and "disproprtionate escalation." They are making MILLIONS. I am refusing to spend a few dollars. Where is the "disproprtionate escalation?"

"A lack of respect for freedom of speech?" Man, are you serious? They had their say, now the comman man gets his. If they TRULY believe in their position, and in free speech, they would allow the comman man to have his say as well. Problem is, they want to insult the comman man, and still expect him to spend his hard earned money so they can live in Malibu.

The stars have the tools of the media to get their point across. The common man has his wallet as his tool.

.
How did they insult the "common man"?czardonic
Apr 16, 2003 9:38 AM
And who speaks for the "common man", anyway?
But what does a boycott <i>really</i> say?czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 11:19 AM
When I buy a CD, it don't do it as an expression of solidarity with the artist's politics. I certainly wouldn't boycott or destroy CDs I paid good money for just because the artist said something I disagree with (especially when I can get 30 cents on the dollar selling it at a used record store -- that is sticking it to the artist!).

If you already own a Dixie Chicks CD then I am afraid that you do agree with Ms. Maynes, to some extent. Your enjoyment of music that is the product of the same mind as her notorious statements indicates that you share a certain amount of common ground. More importantly, it shows that the views you find so reprehensible are a product of the same American experience that forged your own views.

Boycotting a CD does not say "I disagree". It says "I am intolerant". That is everyone's right, but I personally find it sad that so many people are so intolerant that they feel it their personal duty to punish people who express views they don't agree with.
But what does a boycott <i>really</i> say?purplepaul
Apr 11, 2003 11:42 AM
I don't see how you can equate a boycott of a CD with intolerance. It's been a liberal tradition to see where the proceeds of consumer's money goes and then boycott certain companies whose policies run afoul of their beliefs. There's no way you can deny that. Does that make liberals intolerant? Maybe. But I think they are just following their principles. That's one of the things I respect about them. If you value the right to abortion, and you discover that the owner of Domino's pizza contributes lots of money to The Christian Coalition, doesn't it make sense to not support Domino's pizza? Makes sense to me as your money eventually ends up in the hands of a group you may vehemently disagree with.
I think it is different. . .czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 12:04 PM
. . .because we are talking about the mere expression of an opinion with zero consequence. If the Dixie Chicks were donating money to some anti-Bush organization, I think a boycott would be fair game. It would represent an refusal to support a cause you disagree with. But the Dixie Chick's CDs don't represent a cause.

I guess what I don't get is why someone would decide that they vehemently disagree with the Dixie Chicks entire discography based on a single statement of dissent. That is where I see the intolerance.

Anyway, I would have to say that any boycott is an expression of intolrance, but the devil is in the details. I think that intolerance of political opinion is a bit different that intolerance of encroachments on rights.
At this point, I think we're arguing about semanticspurplepaul
Apr 11, 2003 1:01 PM
You call it intolerance, I call it disapproval. You're right, though, the devil is in the details. Unfortunately, no matter how just a cause seems to me, there always seems to be a opposing side. Why is that?
It's scary and it smacks of hysteria andOldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:11 AM
McCarthyism and just plain foolishness, but what the hell --you can't outlaw it, wouldn't want to if you could, and it'll blow over anyway -- as soon as we overthrow the Troskyist neo-con junta that has illegitimately seized the federal government. In the next election, of course (which we better make sure we win by MORE than half a million votes next time!)
if the government did it, that's something elseDougSloan
Apr 11, 2003 10:14 AM
The government, McCarthyism, is absolutely prohibited to retaliate against someone for exercising first amendment rights. Totally different (I realize you impliedly acknowledge that).

Doug
Win by as many votes as you want,TJeanloz
Apr 11, 2003 10:14 AM
As long as the electoral college remains, the popular vote is relatively insignificant.

Actually, it would be interesting to see how much a candidate could lose by in the popular election and still win the electoral election -- I don't know what it is, but it must be a huge number, given the population distribution in the country.
It would be vast. Zillions of votes.OldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:18 AM
But I would amend your statement to say 'as long as the SUPREME COURT remains constituted as it is, the popular AND electoral votes are totally insignificant.'

That would be my scurrilous liberal take on it, which as we know is fairly worthless as a diving rod for truth!
Umm, it couldn't be that vast,TJeanloz
Apr 11, 2003 10:25 AM
Was there ever a final determination about the "actual" outcome of the Florida balloting? Didn't the Miami Herald count the votes or something? I'm not trying to take a side here, I am genuinely curious about what the legitimate outcomes might have been, from an objective source.
It was still cockeyed, because there wereOldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:36 AM
all those different ways you might see a vote (chads, dimples, all that nuttiness) but as I recall, the conclusion was pretty ironic:

Gore would indeed have still lost, if the authorities had only recounted those heavily Democratic counties he asked for.

However, if he had asked for a FULL statewide recount, something that never occured to him, he might have actually won.
It's scary and it smacks of hysteria andLive Steam
Apr 11, 2003 10:24 AM
"It's scary and it smacks of hysteria and
McCarthyism"

I think what smacked of McCarthyism was what happened during the last administration. If you were a conservative in Hollywood, and vocalized this position, you did not get work. Clinton's buddy Harvey Weinstein made sure of that. Just ask Bo Derek and many other Hollywood conservatives. This reference to McCarthyism is typical Liberal duplicity and propaganda.
LOL! You're great!OldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:33 AM
'Liberal duplicity.' HA HA HA HA HA!

Doug, I demand this namecalling stop.
<i>Bo Derek</i>!? nmczardonic
Apr 11, 2003 10:35 AM
We ruined that poor girl's career, Czar. nmOldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:39 AM
I thought "Tarzan" ruined her career. ;-Psn69
Apr 11, 2003 11:11 AM
But it sure helped me through puberty.
I almost choked on my apple :O)Live Steam
Apr 11, 2003 11:41 AM
Thanks for the laugh! Ann Margret and Barbara Eden got me through mine :O)
Yummy...Ann Margret in "Tommy"sn69
Apr 11, 2003 11:44 AM
My father kept assuring me I'd understand. He was so right.
Yummy...Ann Margret in "Tommy"Live Steam
Apr 11, 2003 11:48 AM
I love The Who for sure, but I was refering to the 4 O'clock Movie that used to be on every day back in the early '70s. She was in so many of those Elvis/bikini movies :O)
Don't look at me. . .it was like that when I got here. (nm)czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 3:52 PM
just as radio stations can choose not to playrufus
Apr 11, 2003 12:54 PM
dixie chicks songs, or sean penn can lose a $10 million movie role, simply because of what they say or do, i guess hollywood studio heads have the choice to not hire bo derek or the other unfairly maligned conservatives you mentioned.
Now you know how we feel about Jesse Jacksonpurplepaul
Apr 11, 2003 11:29 AM
Frankly, I don't have any problem with what the Dixie Chicks said. But I can understand why some people would not want to put money in their pockets. Democracy is the freedom to succeed and the freedom to fail. With something as ethereal as the tastes of music fans, voicing an opinion is enough to change some tastebuds. Plenty of people have been fired for voicing an opinion, especially when they're in the public eye. I think as a country we're pretty thin skinned. We really believe that some thoughts or words CAN hurt us and, therefore, shouldn't be allowed to be voiced, ever. I believe, taken out of context, a word is just a word. Add some context, and it is only those words that are extremely likely to provoke heinous acts that should be looked at with caution (the ubiquitous example of yelling "fire" in a crowded auditorium comes to mind).

Boycotting the DC seems about as serious as Hollywood boycotting Bo Derek (who cares). Shouldn't people be allowed to get together and voice their opinions and not buy things they don't want?

Contrast that with Jesse Jackson who simply blackmails companies into doing what he wants for his own financial benefit. If it's okay for him to do that, you couldn't possibly have a problem with groups of citizens refusing to buy DC CD's.
I don't quite see the irony. . .czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 10:15 AM
. . .mostly because I've never heard the camp that is boycotting the Dixie Chicks claim any solidarity with the First Amendment. They tend to see the Flag as a representation of their personal values, rather than a representation of the principles on which the country was founded.
re: Free speech and boycottsLive Steam
Apr 11, 2003 10:15 AM
Where did you get the idea that there were "organized" boycotts going on? I find it ironic that the Left, who always use the "freedom of speech" card, don't appreciate it when the situation is reversed. You use the word "vengeance" to describe the boycott of these artists - what would you call what Michael Moore did or what Mike Farrell, Ed Azner and many other have said about the President?

This is similar hypocrisy to the flag incident in San Francisco. Flaming liberals wanted action taken against police officers displaying American flags on their uniforms, but peace symbols were to be tolerated. You can burn the American flag in protest, but you cannot smash a Dixie Chic CD. What a pathetic joke, and typical duplicity exhibited by the Left.
American Flag vs. Peace Symbol. Flags vs. CDsczardonic
Apr 11, 2003 10:28 AM
The peace symbol has an unambiguous meaning: Peace. The American Flag, however, represents a more complex and often contradictory set of values. Placing it on an official uniform signifies that it represents the powers behind that uniform. In most cases that is not a problem, but when police are squaring off agains civil unrest, it sends a dangerous message.

Buring a flag and smashing a CD are roughly the same, i.e. symbolic acts. But advocating the ruination of the people who created that CD goes a step further.
American Flag vs. Peace Symbol. Flags vs. CDsLive Steam
Apr 11, 2003 10:44 AM
The officers wearing those uniforms swore to uphold the laws of the country they represent. The flag flies over the buildings they occupy. The flag provides the freedoms the dissenters enjoy. It is not meant to intimidate. That is a paranoid response by people who do not have tolerance for differing opinions.

I think the Liberals in Cal. who want to change the Pledge of Allegiance are hypocrites too. The Founding Fathers often referenced God. In God We Trust is printed on every greenback. One swears to tell the truth so help me God, in the Court of Law. The President swears on the Bible when taking the oath of office. I am no Bible preaching person, but where will this BS stop? Heck if they don't like the word God, they can give me all of their money and be rid of the word in any form.
Doug, Doug! He's calling people names again! nmOldEdScott
Apr 11, 2003 10:50 AM
:O)>Live Steam
Apr 11, 2003 10:52 AM
Paranoid?czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 10:56 AM
With people such as yourself tarring anti-war protesters as anti-troop and anti-American, the concerns of protests finding themselves pitted agains Flag bearing riot cops are not so crazy. The cops certainly understand the distinction, and don't wear the Flags for political purposes. But there are obviously a lot or people who are incapable of recognizing that both sides represent America, and flags on uniforms plays into their confusion.

The Founding Fathers didn't write the Pledge, and the guy who did write the Pledge didn't put the word God in it. Where will it stop? Personally, I would be happy to see God removed from all of the situations you listed. But, I will settle if those who take the Lord's name in sanctimonious vanity will not encroach any further on our public institutions.
Boycott versus words...PdxMark
Apr 11, 2003 10:46 AM
I don't get your point about what those folks said in relation to boycotts against others. Bad-mouthing the government is the very point I'm making. Just as you, Rush, and others love to do about Clinton... Bad-mouthing the government, Presidnet, etc., is the very point of free speech.

My point is the attacks against people who do state an opinion against the government. Smashing a Dixie Chick CD because of ONE statement shows a profound intolerance of difference of opinion... of freedom of speech. Burning a flag, or a cross, is a symbolic "attack" against the government, not other individuals.

I have to look up the SF flag/peace symbol issue...
Isn't a boycott just a form of free speech with your wallet?Alpedhuez55
Apr 11, 2003 11:51 AM
If someone wants to not buy a product or avoid companies who sponser them it is within thier right.

I do not think Boycotts are always effective. THey usually backfire. Look at what happenned to the reatings of TV shows like Soap & Married With CHildren after groups tried to boycott them.

I think if I skip a movie by some hollywood left winger, it is because I think they should shut up and dont want to enable them. THey have the right to say whatever they want and I have the right to ignore them, call them an idiot, call an advertiser if it is a TV show to suggest they not advertise there.

The boycotters have every just as much right to do so as the person who says something that may make someone worthy the boycott. THey are not boycotting the concept of free speech, they are boycotting somebody who who has irked or angered them.

Mike Y.
I think you miss the pointdasho
Apr 11, 2003 5:56 PM
Of course we Americans support free speech but that doesn't mean we have to endorse or agree with statements such as Maine's or that we won't get very upset by such statements. If her statement makes me very upset and I no longer wish to see the Dixie Chicks concert, what is wrong with that?

I'm sure Ms. Maines knew before she made her statement there could/would be some repercussions but obviously she misjudged just how many people this would upset. She probably bought into the media polls that stated only a minority of Americans were in favor of the war. Maybe they were not in favor of the war, but they don't like an American making statements against our leader on foreign soil. If she would have just said she doesn't support the war or the president's decision but supports and prays for our troops and innocent Iraqis she would have fared much better. She decided to get personal about it and that was her downfall.

I also heard the Dixies are refusing to take back already sold concert tickets which I think is pretty rude.
Well. . .czardonic
Apr 11, 2003 6:38 PM
. . .does owning a Dixie Chicks CD mean that you support their off-topic, off-the-cuff opinions on the War? Do you have to agree with every aspect of an artists politics to enjoy their music?

Evidently, the answer is yes on both counts for a lot of narrow-minded and doctrinaire former Dixie Chicks fans.

And why is it that when someone opposes war, they must constantly stipulate that they hope that as few soldiers and civilians as possible are killed? In who's adled mind does that not go without saying? The whole reason to oppose war in the first place is opposition to killing. On the other hand, why aren't people who support war required to stipulate that they aren't itching to see a bunch of troops and civilians die. After all, death is the inevitable outcome of what they are supporting.

The refund policy is bunk. Shame on them.
Well. . .purplepaul
Apr 11, 2003 7:04 PM
I'm sure some people who don't like what the DC said are still fans just as I'm sure that some who loved what they said became fans.

But I think some of those opposed to war, not just this one, but wars going back decades, have behaved in anything but peaceful, thoughtful ways. Witness the violence that breaks out at peace marches, or signs that admonish people to kill those evil warmongers. Those on the opposite side feel that violent hostility and conclude that the antiwar movement isn't anti-killing, it's just anti-American (Hanoi Jane, 1 million Mogadishus, We support our troops when they kill their officers). Not exactly a love fest.

Of course, many people aren't like that. But they're quieter and easier to overlook.
Well. . .? Well, well said! nmLive Steam
Apr 11, 2003 7:15 PM
I see your point but...dasho
Apr 12, 2003 7:06 AM
If I were a Dixie Chick fan and enjoyed their music I would still listen to them but I would send them an e-mail and voice my displeasure of the personal attack on Bush or Clinton or whoever was our leader.

You say the whole reason for opposition to war is opposition to killing but if these protestors (and the Dixie Chicks) were so concerned about preserving life why didn't they have rallys to protest the 5,000 Iraqi children dying each month because of Saddam's spending oil for food profits to rebuild his military etc? Or killing (gassing) thousands of Kurds in 1991? Or protest letting Saddam kick the UN inspectors out of Iraq in 1998? Or Saddam's offer of $25,000 to each family of a Palestinian suicide bomber? I'm not trying to antagonize anyone but some of these protestors remind me of the save the whales/pro abortion crowd.

Some seem to think negotiations will work with characters like Saddam Hussein or Osama Bin Laden. But look what happened when the Clinton administration tried to negotiate with the North Koreans into not developing nukes. They lied and deceived the US and now we have a real problem on our hands. Believe me I hate war but sometimes they are necessary and unfortunately there will be more. I think like Tony Bair in that it is better to deal with it now than later and shame on the UN for not putting more pressure on Hussein in the first place which may have prevented this. If you remember, they would not let the US go into Bagdad in the first war as they wanted Saddam to remain in power.

I'm probably wrong more times than right but I think going to war was a very tough and unpopular decision but it was the right thing to do.
Excellent post dasho! nmLive Steam
Apr 12, 2003 8:43 AM
Well, here we go again.czardonic
Apr 14, 2003 9:51 AM
The fact of the matter is that the same neo-bleeding hearts that weep for the Iraqis and Kurds as they plunge their country into chaos in order to "save" them were the ones who were supporting and arming Saddam Hussein during his worst atrocities. Its too late for the pro war crowd to pretend like you give a damn about humanitarian issues (though you can delude yourselves).
I propose: Some Hypothesesaeon
Apr 11, 2003 7:59 PM
From my perspective, a boycott, on the personal level, is all the free speech that most of us will ever get. I don't think it's really fair to call any boycott 'organized', either. Sure, there are a few who try to guide and explain the actions of the many, but the degree of actual organizational power is small.

Hypothesis: The degree of knee-jerkness (it's a technical term) of a reaction is strongly and positively related to the apparant knee-jerkness of the originating statement.

For example, suppose that a prominant scholar runs an editorial against the war in a newspaper, backed up with citiations and examples. The reaction to such a paper would be much more measured, you can't simply dismiss the paper offhand, with name calling. That would be a case of ignorance. But, in the case of the Dixie Chicks, the remark was off the cuff, ininvited, and simply a statement of opinion without supporting evidence. Thus, the reaction by any single individual is equally as quick and as strong as the individual can make it (immediately stop buying the CD's). I don't think you can take all the boycotters to represent one group, and the dixie chicks another. The overall boycott is simply the aggregate of individual actions, maybe a bit more.

Consider if each boycotter had an opportunity to respond in kind. Or, if there were just as many Dixie Chicks as boycotters. Then we'd see some sparks!

It's an interesting example of how we place so much weight on single statements, especially when they buck a trend. I'd say it's the saddest fact of the whole situation, that the slogan or soundbite has replaced rational argument. It's also, in my eye, the reason for the failure of most mass-protest type deals - mostly from the left.

I'll toss a coal into the fire here - when Metallica sued Napster, the reaction (including mine) was a boycott against the music of Metallica. Not that they really seemed to care, multimillionares as they are, but I digress. I feel that celebrities need to recognize that their words hold more power than those of the peasent folk, but their message does not, and should not. If you throw a statement, or action, out there, you know it's going to generate a lot of heat, and you should be prepared to defend yourself.

Interestingly, I don't see any evidence of an explaination from the Dixie Chicks. Probably not the wisest move in terms of public relations.

"It got a bit confusing... when the war-monger crowd declared that the opinion of anyone who was opposed to the war was irrelevant."

I totally agree here. It's a mistake of both sides though, Again, and again, and again... Somewhat related, it's the right of a person to express an opinion even if they aren't informed, but I don't think either side should take it as representing an informed statement, if it isn't.

"I wonder what the reaction would have been if our president happened to be from a (protected) minority group?"

I'm waiting for this day to happen. Some of the outcomes should be veeeeery interesting =). I'm betting that people just won't know how to express themselves anymore, without tip-toeing or sticking a foot in their mouths. Race (sex, religion, etc.) is only an issue when people make it an issue, and the both the minority in question and the majority can be guilty of making it an issue. I choose not to.

But this suggests that one would apply a political litmus test to all commercial transactions.

I think in this age it's hard to avoid. Honestly, have you never been tempted to skip Nike because of the claimed labour issues, or McDonalds becuase of any number of reasons? Everything we do now send a political message. It's up to us to decide if we care what message we send.

Bo Derek? Man you guys are waaaaay past my time.

Final curious note: Thus far, I've yet to hear of anyone buying a Dixie Chicks CD because they agree with
I propose: Some Hypothesesaeon
Apr 11, 2003 8:09 PM
From my perspective, a boycott, on the personal level, is all the free speech that most of us will ever get. I don't think it's really fair to call any boycott 'organized', either. Sure, there are a few who try to guide and explain the actions of the many, but the degree of actual organizational power is small.

Hypothesis: The degree of knee-jerkness (it's a technical term) of a reaction is strongly and positively related to the apparant knee-jerkness of the originating statement.

For example, suppose that a prominant scholar runs an editorial against the war in a newspaper, backed up with citiations and examples. The reaction to such a paper would be much more measured, you can't simply dismiss the paper offhand, with name calling. That would be a case of ignorance. But, in the case of the Dixie Chicks, the remark was off the cuff, ininvited, and simply a statement of opinion without supporting evidence. Thus, the reaction by any single individual is equally as quick and as strong as the individual can make it (immediately stop buying the CD's). I don't think you can take all the boycotters to represent one group, and the dixie chicks another. The overall boycott is simply the aggregate of individual actions, maybe a bit more.

Consider if each boycotter had an opportunity to respond in kind. Or, if there were just as many Dixie Chicks as boycotters. Then we'd see some sparks!

It's an interesting example of how we place so much weight on single statements, especially when they buck a trend. I'd say it's the saddest fact of the whole situation, that the slogan or soundbite has replaced rational argument. It's also, in my eye, the reason for the failure of most mass-protest type deals - mostly from the left.

I'll toss a coal into the fire here - when Metallica sued Napster, the reaction (including mine) was a boycott against the music of Metallica. Not that they really seemed to care, multimillionares as they are, but I digress. I feel that celebrities need to recognize that their words hold more power than those of the peasent folk, but their message does not, and should not. If you throw a statement, or action, out there, you know it's going to generate a lot of heat, and you should be prepared to defend yourself.

Interestingly, I don't see any evidence of an explaination from the Dixie Chicks. Probably not the wisest move in terms of public relations.

"It got a bit confusing... when the war-monger crowd declared that the opinion of anyone who was opposed to the war was irrelevant."

I totally agree here. It's a mistake of both sides though, Again, and again, and again... Somewhat related, it's the right of a person to express an opinion even if they aren't informed, but I don't think either side should take it as representing an informed statement, if it isn't.

"I wonder what the reaction would have been if our president happened to be from a (protected) minority group?"

I'm waiting for this day to happen. Some of the outcomes should be veeeeery interesting =). I'm betting that people just won't know how to express themselves anymore, without tip-toeing or sticking a foot in their mouths. Race (sex, religion, etc.) is only an issue when people make it an issue, and the both the minority in question and the majority can be guilty of making it an issue. I choose not to.

But this suggests that one would apply a political litmus test to all commercial transactions.

I think in this age it's hard to avoid. Honestly, have you never been tempted to skip Nike because of the claimed labour issues, or McDonalds becuase of any number of reasons? Everything we do now send a political message. It's up to us to decide if we care what message we send.

Bo Derek? Man you guys are waaaaay past my time.

Final curious note: Thus far, I've yet to hear of anyone buying a Dixie Chicks CD because they agree with