My Rights, Your Rights

I believe that our Constitution was amended by the Bill of Rights to redress the wrongs done to our citizens by an oppressive British Government.  For the most part they embody the things that were wrong back then and in most part the things that are wrong, if done, today.  There is a process to redress the things the Bill of Rights  didn't cover.   We have made sure that everyone has the right to vote and that repealed our attempt at Prohibition as it was just overcome by the Laws of Unintended Consequences. 

Today on Facebook, one of my "Friends" posted that someone passed out fliers at her workplace that warned everyone to get ready that Judgment Day is coming soon.  I told her that I feel that it is wrong to bring this kind of debate into the workplace.  The Freedom of Religion to me means just that.  If I want to celebrate trees and dance naked in the moon light that is my right but not theirs to tell me in any way about theirs at work.  This wasn't just a casual conversation that she could get up and walk away from in the break room.  There were several of the fliers in several places.  Lets supposed that she had been gay and the Fred Phelps Clan put a flier on her desk that said, "God Hates Fags." They may have the right to carry such signs on the streets of Topeka as a part of their free speech amendment but they don't have the right to bash people with those signs.  And, they don't have the right to bring that debate or ridicule into my or her workplace. 

The Master Gardener and I discuss from time to time the role of government and the Laws they pass.  I do agree with her that in a lot of cases, the laws get passed to protect a minority part of our population from wrongs the Constitution should give the right to do.  (By Minority part, I do not mean race color or religion, but less than the majority)  By the same token I feel that some of the Laws are unnecessary because the current laws, if enforced, should provide the very rights the new Laws allow or prohibit.  I think I have said before that if an old  Law cannot be enforced, a new Law is likely to suffer the same weakness.   The other side of that is that a lot of us fear a Government big enough to enforce all the laws that are out there today.  Many others really support the need for new laws to make sure things are equally fair.  That is their freedom of speech and I won't take that away even if I don't agree 100% with the message.

Somewhere we have lost the ability to talk to each other without being Preachy or confrontational.  My Mother, who played the piano at the Baptist Church for a lot of her life, would just tell us kids to knock it off if we were insulting to our family or friends.  I just wish that there was some "Mother" button we could push and ensure that we listened more than we talked. (Said by the guy who writes from the bully pulpit called a blog) Our rights should end where our nose ends but in a lot of cases we want to stick it where the rights of others start.   

What ever you feel about your rights, I hope that you don't ever want to lose even a small part to silence someone or something you don't like.  In our society, we have the right to assemble and peacefully demonstrate.  That is what is missing in a lot of the world.  Lets not let that start, or stop, here for any reason.


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