Monday, January 31, 2005

"Free Speech is For Losers. Let's Go To the Mall"

Ok, perhaps it isn't that bad-- just yet. But according to a study conducted by the University of Connecticut, roughly 3 out of four high school students think flag burning is illegal and roughly half think the government can restrict indecent material on the Internet. (I hope that) people reading this site already know that neither of these things is true. Perhaps most disturbing was that 36 percent of these young people, when told of the exact text of the First Amendment, said it goes "too far" in the rights it guarantees. Only half said newspapers should be allowed to publish freely without government approval of their stories.
When asked whether people should be allowed to express unpopular views, 97 percent of teachers and 99 percent of school principals said yes. Only 83 percent of the students did. In addition, 73% of the students either did not know how they felt about the First Amendment or admitted taking it for granted.

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.

45 simple words. How can you "not know how you feel about them?"

I commented earlier at Arvin Hill that I didn't think we'd have a draft. But now I'm beginning to wonder not only if I was wrong, but if it will prove to be comparatively easy to implement. After all, it would be wrong to object to a draft; that kind of talk only gives aid and comfort to the terrorists. Time to go shopping.