I had an English teacher when I was in Junior High who required us to read books and then do book reports. In doing our book reports, she emphasized to us that she wasn’t looking for summaries, but instead she was looking for meanings.
A good example of a novel where the actual meaning went far beyond the details of the story is John Grisham’s “A Time to Kill.” In his first and probably most intense novel, the reader gets to see a democratic form of government at its best and its worst. When you throw human emotions into the mix, you discover real conflicts where no one’s right or wrong. No one ever said that democracy is a perfect way to govern ourselves, but I think that we all can agree that it’s the best thing that we have been able to come up with to date.
What parent worth his or her weight wouldn’t kill someone who severely hurt his or her child? A long time ago, I was in a relationship and the guy hit me. I immediately broke up with him, but would never tell my parents what really happened. If my Dad had found out that he had physically abused me, he would have killed him, pure and simple. I can think of a couple of other men who have threatened to kill men that had hurt their daughters, not caring if they went to jail or got the death penalty.
On the other hand, our government provides for a justice system whereby individuals are not to take the law into their own hands. Everyone is entitled to a trial by jury no matter how egregious the crime is and is deemed innocent until proven guilty by a jury of his or her peers.
In my last post, I indicated that all Americans should monitor the Cliven Bundy case and the alleged land grab by the feds on the Texas side of the Red River which serves as the border between the states of Texas and Oklahoma. We should all be aware of our rights and wary of over-reach whether it’s by the government, our employer, companies with which we do business, etc.
As much as I hate to say this, all Americans should follow the Donald Sterling case also. When I first heard about it, I thought, oh no! Somebody else said something racial and that’s all we’re going to hear about on the news for a while. This person will be condemned by everyone and forced out of the L.A. Clippers organization and will be relegated to a life of misery. I didn’t even think or care of he was a democrat or a republican.
According to the facts of the case, Donald Sterling, owner of the NBA’s L.A. Clippers made some derogatory racial statements directed at African Americans in private. These statements were recorded by his girlfriend without his knowledge. In California where this happened, this is illegal and would not be permissible in a court of law. However, when Donald Sterling purchased the Clippers, he signed some sort of agreement giving up privacy rights.
It’s not exactly breaking news that freedom of speech in our nation is under attack and may, in fact, be gone forever. We all remember Miss California USA who opined that marriage should be between a man and a woman when asked if gay marriage should be legalized while competing in the Miss USA Pageant. This woman was demonized. And let’s also not forget Brendan Eich who was forced to resign as CEO of Mozilla all because he contributed $1,000 to an organization that supports the traditional view of marriage.
As in the Bundy and Texas land grab cases, we should watch the Sterling case regarding freedom of speech and remember all of the other incidents where someone espoused a belief that was contrary to what has become the new normal in our country.
Some of you liberals will probably miss the whole point of this post, and I actually expect it. This is not a post about the details of the Donald Sterling case or a post about freedom of speech or government over-reach. I’ll surely post many time concerning these topics. It’s a post about incidents that are taking place in the country that should serve as warning to all Americans as we witness the erosion of our freedoms, freedoms that made this nation an exceptional nation. Freedom has to be nurtured in order for it to be sustained, and having just the right combination of leaders and media can erode those freedoms. I fear that we have that right combination now.