Nothing Says Understanding American Freedom Like Cheering for Teenagers to Get Beaten by Cops

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“…one thing I have now learned is that fascism and freedom of speech are pretty much the same thing. I mean, if they weren’t, wouldn’t all the conservatives who were…raising alarms about the lack of free speech on college campuses be freaking out about watching kids demanding their governments and learning institutions stop bankrolling Benjamin Netanyahu’s genocide get beaten by police officers called on them by those same colleges?”

As I live on this planet, as a citizen of this country, I continue to learn new things about life here that I simply did not know before.

This week, I learned something new about freedom, and more specifically about American freedom of speech. Namely, I learned that the best part of American freedom is freedom of speech, assembly, and expression. Then I learned that the best part of freedom of speech, assembly, and expression is, it would seem to many Americans anyway, watching eighteen and nineteen year old students get the shit beat of them for using any of those freedoms.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand that to the uninitiated it would seem like the total opposite of freedom and liberty for a college student to get gassed and beaten by cops for protesting peacefully, but hey, you learn something new every day. And one thing I have now learned is that fascism and freedom of speech are pretty much the same thing. I mean, if they weren’t, wouldn’t all the conservatives who were bitching and moaning and raising alarms about the lack of free speech on college campuses be freaking out about watching kids demanding their governments and learning institutions stop bankrolling Benjamin Netanyahu’s genocide get beaten by police officers called on them by those same colleges??

I suppose, maybe, it could be assumed that conservatives weren’t really upset about free speech at college campuses; they were concerned that it was being used to call conservatives out and criticize them, even to shout them down. But that just seems like me using critical thinking and we all know that’s akin to full-blown commie-nism and was outlawed by the Trump administration in 2019, right? So I’m left to simply conclude that when college kids assemble to protest something their government is doing, they are inviting police officers to pummel them into submission.

Instead of “Give me liberty or give me death,” I guess what a lot of Americans believe is “Give me death if you give me liberty and I hurt your Zionist feelings with it.” Again, I just keep learning new shit these days.

I’ve also noticed a not-small number of so-called progressives, usually of a certain age, saying things like the kids deserve to be beaten because they’re all a bunch of antisemitic Nazi sympathizers. Now, considering that a huge number of the protesters on college campuses have been Jewish students, that seems like the kind of thing I’d call “really fucking stupid” before, but thanks to my newfound perspective on college protests, I know it’s not dumb, nor is it pluperfectly ironic because a lot of those people are old hippies who burned their draft cards and protested on college campuses in the 1960’s and 1970’s. The simple truth seems to be that freedom of speech only exists if you’re making angry comments on social media, not if you’re assembling in real life to ask people in power to stop bankrolling the killing of innocent civilians.

Though, if I’m being completely honest, even my newfound understanding of how American freedom actually works doesn’t seem to stop me from feeling like if a cop laid their hands or baton on my soon-to-be college bound son at a peaceful protest, I’d want that cop beaten within an inch of their life, thrown in a tar pit, covered in feathers, and catapulted into the sun. Is that wrong of me to say?

Up until now, I would have guessed that me thinking those thoughts and expressing them publicly would be covered by freedom of speech. Now I’m not so sure. It’s a risk I’m wiling to take though, because I’m pretty sure since I’m a middle-aged white man no rules apply to me anyway, but I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that I still think those thoughts.

Freedom is funny like that sometimes, ain’t it?


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