The point of free speech

The more I think about it, the more I think the folks that don’t like the outcome of the Citizens United case don’t understand the concept of free speech. Everyone I have heard complain about the verdict has essentially wanted to curb the power of large corporations. In their mind, it is perfectly justifiable to limit their ability to run political ads.

Here’s the trouble, in doing that, you also restrict the ability of smaller, grassroots organizations to express themselves as well. The proponents of the McCain-Feingold legislation are willing to eliminate the voices of smaller, activist organizations in order to prevent the possibility of a corporation abusing its so-called power.

The hell of it is that the corporations will find other ways of influencing lawmakers, the rich will always do OK. It is the smaller voices that need to be heard, perhaps even in opposition to corporate interests. That is the entire point behind the concept of free speech.

Yes, the overturning of that legislation may lead to more corporate political activism but it is also the only way to fight against that activism. Instead of trying to limit certain groups, we should instead try to make sure that everyone has the chance to get their point across. Free speech for everyone is the only way.

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