Tag Archives: First Amendment

Could It Be We Agree?

Since when did it become impossible to discuss politics and religion? Why is it so difficult?

American flag of handprints

one nation, under God, indivisible

Last week I told you about Finding (Un)Common Ground, the new site I’ve launched with writer Lisen Stromberg. We’re publishing side-by-side opinion posts about controversial, potentially divisive topics. We’re not experts; we’re simply moms who would really like to be able to discuss issues with civility. We believe others would like to be able to do the same.

Lisen’s the West Coast liberal and I’m the Southern/Heartland conservative. As expected, we did not agree in our first round of posts last week concerning the terrorist attacks against our embassies in Libya, Egypt, and Yemen.

This week, however, in our second round of posts, something strange happened.

We agreed. Well, sort of.

We weren’t in perfect sync with each other on the responses from Google and the Obama administration regarding the film Innocence of Muslims. That showed up in the comments. But we did agree on one thing: the freedom of speech is a right that must be upheld.

Wow.

blue field of handprints on flag

with liberty and justice for all

I’d say a liberal and a conservative agreeing on the importance of the First Amendment is reason for hope in this brutal election season. It may be rare that Lisen and I agree on anything, but what a great place to begin.

I promise not to blog here every time we post something there. I’ll try to let you know when new posts are up so you can click over to read them if you want.

Yesterday Lisen and I were thrilled that BlogHer syndicated our story. Read both sides in An Uncommon Meeting Sparks Civil Dialogue, Launches New Site.

Is civil dialogue possible? We’re game give it a fighting chance.

Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. Hebrews 12:14 NIV

Keep Your Eyes Open, my love. By NeedtoBreathe. I know the fight is on the way when the sides have been chosen. 

Please visit the BlogHer post, share or comment if you like our concept, and have an uncommonly good weekend!

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Lincoln’s Dream

With the Republican National Convention underway, a quote from a famous Republican is apropos for Wednesday Words to Remember.

Abraham Lincoln quote: last best hope

I wonder if Abraham Lincoln was speaking of the freedoms and privileges we enjoy in America that many in the world still do not.

Liberty to vote for our leaders. To transfer power without war. To worship as we choose. To bear arms. To own property, pursue education, and start businesses.

When Lincoln was alive, liberty had not been fully realized by all Americans. Was he thinking of the great trial of his presidency, the Civil War?

Did he believe that preserving the Union meant the freedom of all Americans would be one day be realized and spread to other countries? It would appear that was the hope of his dream.

There’s another possibility.

A Hope that transcends personal and political freedom. I wonder if this Hope was also what Lincoln dreamed for America and for the world.

Why did Abraham Lincoln say this? Can America be the “last best hope of the earth” again?

wednesday words to remember

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Public Service Announcement

Hi, everyone.

In the past few days, I’ve received some hate tweets, in addition to lots of unsavory comments on the BlogHer site.

It’s important to me to protect the forum of discussion on everyday epistle so people of all views are able to respectfully comment here. In order to do that, all comments will be held in moderation until approved.

Thanks for reading. Please continue to pray God will work in this and in our country as He sees fit. It is my hope we can continue the tradition of the rule of law and the First Amendment, agreeing to disagree with civility and respect for each other.

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Where Am I Again?

ATTENTION: Unexpected bonus post.

statue of freedom in U.S. Capitol Visitor Center

Tonight I’m wondering what country I’m in.

Earlier today I commented on super blogger Rachel Held Evans’ post. She addressed the latest upset about Rush Limbaugh and how Christians are responding. Her post got a whopping 325 comments before they were closed because of trolls.

Rather than have you rummage through all that, here’s an excerpt of my lengthy comment:

As for Rush, his delivery is faulted, even distasteful. Like it or not, he’s protected just like you and I are under the First Amendment to speak and have a place at the table of public discourse. I would argue that some of his political points are spot-on in line with an evangelical perspective, especially regarding right to life issues. And he has a platform and an audience.

Tonight I revisited to see if Evans responded. She didn’t and I didn’t expect her to. But a couple other bloggers did.

Here’s the reply that zapped me back to the U.S.S.R.:

“Like it or not, he’s protected just like you and I are under the First Amendment to speak and have a place at the table of public discourse.”

Actually, he’s not.

The First Amendment states, “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.”

No one is petitioning Congress to make a law about Rush Limbaugh. No one is trying to get the government to intervene. People have asked political figures their opinion, but they have not asked them to legislate on the issue.

No one is guaranteed a podium from which to spew hate speech. They are simply guaranteed freedom from government intervention.

first amendment got your back

Actually he’s not? Again I wonder, what country is this anyway?

The spirit of the First Amendment means everyone may speak even if we disagree. It’s the backbone or at least the ribcage of our other freedoms.

Am I to understand it’s en vogue to toss that spirit on a technicality? It’s now okay to censor as long as it’s not the government that does the dirty work?

Lawyers, scholars, law-abiding Americans, I need you here. Someone, anyone, weigh in, please. I’m listening.

What do ya’ll think?

You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. James 1:19 NLT

The Beatles, Back in the U.S.S.R.

We will return to regularly scheduled programming in the morning. Good night!

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