A group of over 550 “members of the writing, publishing and broader literary community” wrote an open letter to book publisher Penguin Random House (Penguin) accusing the media company of funding “the destruction of human rights with obscene profits” if it goes ahead with publishing U.S. Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s upcoming memoirs.
The group claims to care deeply about freedom of speech, but is nevertheless asking/demanding Penguin to censor a book that no one has even seen yet.
“We recognize that harm is done to a democracy not only in the form of censorship, but also in the form of assault on inalienable human rights. As such, we are calling on Penguin Random House to recognize its own history and corporate responsibility commitments by reevaluating its decision to move forward with publishing Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s forthcoming book,” the group letter states.
The letter goes on to describe Justice Barrett’s participation in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision in June that overturned Roe v. Wade. The group calls abortion an “international human right,” says Barrett and the Dobbs majority violated that human right and must now be punished.
Actually, the letter doesn’t say “punishment” out loud. The group merely wants the book stopped, i.e., the private industry equivalent of censorship. Punishment by any other name, of course. We all know what game is being played.
But the letter goes to great lengths to convince us they’re really in favor of free speech. Especially since, you know, all the signatories are literary types and all. They have to at least give lip service to the notion that authors and ideas should have a right to be heard.
But Barrett’s book must be quashed because of “wider moral and social responsibilities,” the group writes, quoting liberal film producer David Puttnam who gave a TED Talk justifying censorship in the name of preserving democracy. A concept our founders would have thought laughable.
The group letter is fairly transparent, in the end. The pro-abortion Left is fuming about a constitutional decision that leaves abortion up to the people to decide in each state, and they can’t handle it. It apparently was a much more “democratic” system when unelected justices imposed abortion on the country unilaterally.
Rather than give actual democracy a try, the Left wants corporate America to cancel Barrett’s book, and if possible, her ability to speak, earn a living, or enjoy the fruits of living in this country. And they’ll be coming for the rest of the conservative justices as well. And for anyone else who stands up for what’s right.
To the Left, when one of their liberal bubbles – like abortion – is burst, they immediately go into complete denial of the reality that other people have different points of view on abortion, on the Constitution, and on pretty much everything else they hold dear. Instead, anyone holding a differing view from theirs is not just wrong, but evil. And must be stopped.
Like Justice Barrett.
And to accomplish the eradication of wrong thinking by Barrett and other conservatives, trashing the free speech principles on which the country was founded is a small price to pay to enforce right thinking. Make an example of Barrett and others, and the wrong-thinkers will get back into line.
In fairness, those on the Right can fall into a similar mindset given the right set of circumstances. It’s human nature. But the Left’s love affair with their own vision of everything has reached cancerous proportions in this country. The Barrett book demand is just the most recent example of that cancer.
It doesn’t have to be this way, of course.
That’s why we have a country where, from its very beginning, We the People have valued the free exchange of ideas, and especially unpopular ones. If you don’t like what Justice Barrett writes in her book, please feel free to write your own. The “remedy” for speech you don’t like, Justice Louis Brandeis famously wrote in Whitney v. California, “is more speech, not enforced silence.”
The cancel culture, with its self-proclaimed moral superiority on every major cultural issue today, merely wants to impose its will on the rest of us, not engage with contrary ideas. And it cajoles and threatens third parties such as book publishers and other corporate entities to join in the pitchfork brigade to punish conservative voices, lest they suffer the same moral condemnation and cancellation themselves, as was implicit in the group letter to Penguin.
Here’s hoping Penguin has the moral courage to ignore the bullies who signed the group letter and go ahead with publishing Justice Barrett’s book. If we let the bullies win, America’s freedoms don’t mean much.
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