Tag: free speech zones

Michigan at a Crossroads – John Tatar for Governor

By John Keller | United States
John Tatar is a libertarian campaigning to be the next governor of Michigan.
Keller: Running for governor is no easy task. What inspired you to run for office and pursue a political career?

Tatar: I am tired of the Democrats and Republicans promising everything and delivering NOTHING!  Each “public functionary” has no clue about our Republic and has no clue about the US Constitution and the MI Constitution.  These “public functionaries” have no idea that their power to govern comes from the people who delegate power to them to rule.  If we don’t delegate it,  they do not that the authority to do it.  Yet their responsibilities to take care of the infrastructure has been seriously neglected,  They claim they have no money so they must raise taxes,  yet they have enough money to purchase a 17 million dollar building for 48 Million, and they get away with it.  The “public functionaries”  are over paid and under worked while the people they represent are over worked and under paid,  This REPUBLIC is upside down.  The Candidates that are presently running are ALL part of the SAME ilk.  I could go on and on about what is wrong, but complaining will not fix the problem RUNNING for governor will..

I have always been involved with politics, I have tried to correct some of the problems as a citizen but educating the masses is very difficult.

Keller: When entering politics, what drew you to the Libertarian Party over the Republican Party or the Democratic Party?
Tatar: The Libertarian party has not been compromised at this time.  If you haven”t been a delegate to either of the other two parties that is a true eye opener,  They are corrupt and compromised as the candidates who are running.  I was a delegate at one time to the Republican party, during the Ron Paul run for president.  When Ron Paul met the criteria for speaking at the convention, that is getting 3 states that supported him, then he would get a chance to speak at the Republican Convention.  Well, at the Republican Convention, in front of everyone that was watching on TV saw the chairman of the republicans change the rules to 10 states.  What a criminal behavior! 
Keller: In Michigan’s history, since 1842, there has been 17 democratic and 28 republican governors – no third party governors. Why is the time for a libertarian governor now
Tatar: I believe that many of the Citizens who are involved with the electoral process is fed up with the present political graft and corruption system.  Many have given up, and so when I was out personally gathering the 18,800 signatures, many people who signed for me signed for me because I am running on the libertarian ticket.  I think it is time for a change,  The candidates presently running are running for an office they have no idea what that office is about.  They trample on the Constitution and the peoples rights without any consequences.  Lansing has become totally cloaked in darkness.  We need to change this.
Keller: Libertarians commonly follow the motto, “Less government is better government.” What is one area in which you think more government would actually be better?

Tatar: Less government more liberty.  This government is much too large and too many rules, ordinances, and enforcement officers,  Consequently too many fines, and too many people incarcerated for non violent crime.  Much to much government. Have you been to Lansing lately?  This is a mega city.

Keller: In continuation of the last question, what is one area of government you want to see cut or even erased?

Tatar: Dept of education, Dept of transportation cut, Dept of State cut, Eliminate the Senate, part time legislature on and on.

Keller: What would a libertarian governorship look like in Michigan? In other words, what policies would you want to see enacted?

Tatar: Follow the US Constitution, Follow the Michigan Constitution, re write the oath of office to include if anyone in the legislature, executive or judicial takes a bribe or promises anything that is a felony.

Seriously cut back the size and scope of government. More liberty to the people.  Also eliminate the state income tax and cut back on many other taxes if not eliminate them.  Concentrate on fixing the MI infrastructure.  See my website: johnjtatar.com

Keller: The “Flint, Michigan” story was national news for sometime. How do you view the handling of this issue, and what would you change, if anything?

Tatar: Flint is in the national news because the government was caught “usurping” authority.  All of Michigan water is polluted. That is a sin.  The infrastructure in MI has not been kept up.  All citizens must do house keeping from time to time and so the government needs to do house keeping also.  Instead, the “public functionaries” line their pockets and walk away laughing at the people in MI.

Keller: As Governor, what would be more important to you: following federal mandates from Washington D.C. or serving the state of Michigan?

Tatar: All federal mandates if unconstitutional are “null and void”!!!  Michigan is its own country, we are not a colony of Washington.

Keller: If someone was interested in your campaign, how could they get involved?

Tatar: Go to my website johnjtatar.com and there are ways of contacting me.

Keller: Do you have any final remarks for the audience?

Tatar: We are on the very edge of losing our Republic and sliding back to a Democracy where the Oligarchs will become kings and we will become slaves to those in charge.  What way do you want to go?
I would like to thank John Tatar for his time. Be sure to visit his website to learn more.


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Beware the Beast of Political Correctness

By Addie Mae Villas | USA

As we speak, American culture is going through a massive shift, and in no positive direction. In fact, we are losing societal recognition for one of the most basic liberties: freedom of speech. In modern American culture, there is now a desire to avoid speech that may trigger or offend an individual or group. This shift, the desire for an increase in political correctness, began as a form of common courtesy. However, it has mutated to the point of censorship of both facts and unpopular opinions. The atmosphere created by a politically correct (PC) culture not only spews out misinformation to protect feelings, but twists facts to ensure the happiness of others. This false reality is dangerous on many levels. When left unchecked, it will undoubtedly create a society that blurs the lines between fact and fiction.

Unsurprisingly, PC culture is not exclusive to either economic side of the political spectrum. Although the left shows a number of extreme cases of PC and censorship, the right is no different. In 2017, the Cato Institute, conducted a Free Speech and Tolerance Survey, in which they analyzed Americans’ beliefs on censorship. Simply put, the results were frightening. In it, 53% of Republicans polled favored taking U.S. citizenship from people who burned the American flag. To supplement, 65% of Republicans believed that NFL players should be fired for refusing to stand for the national anthem. Naturally, many individuals simply claim this is national pride. Yet, by supporting restrictions of American freedom, they immediately ruin the very values they claim pride in.

In addition, politically correct Republican culture often leads to blind respect for our law enforcement. While it is true that police officers are valuable members of society, this does not excuse their abuses of power. The shooting of Daniel Shaver is a clear example of said abuse. Though the victim was unarmed and begging for his life, officer Philip Brailsford still shot and killed him. Despite the officer’s murder of Shaver, the Republican party remained silent. Instances like these prove the hypocrisy of the PC right. Though quick to judge the damage caused by the left, many forget that they are guilty of the same faults.

On the contrary, the economic left is equally guilty of a damaging PC culture. Free speech zones on college campuses are a prime example of such damage, with speech restricted beyond certain areas. Moreover, the Cato Institute found that 51% of Democrats support legally forcing Americans to use a transgender’s preferred pronoun. Though doing so is polite, we do not legislate politeness. Such a law is an example of government overreach. If someone wants to misgender someone, that is solely up to the person, not the state, to decide.

After looking at the faults of both sides, which party happens to be the greater offender? The Cato Institute poll found that Democrats are more likely to support banning offensive language. As time passes, the list of offensive terms only increases. In fact, 80% of surveyed Democrats believe that it is hateful or offensive to declare that America should deport illegal immigrants. When so many individuals believe that truths and opinions are derogatory and harmful, civil debate quickly fades away.

In today’s world, discussion is something that needs to happen to prevent a major catastrophe. Currently, Cato reported that 71% of people believe PC has prevented conversations we need in society. One can easily look to oppressive governments to see the damage of restricting free speech. America is rapidly moving in that direction, and a clear change in culture is necessary to protect our liberties.

(Image courtesy of historyofjournalism.onmason.com)

Free Speech Zones: A Backhanded Slap to Students

By Addie Mae Villas | USA

In the day of age of trigger warnings and safe spaces, free speech zones have been appearing on college campuses everywhere, restricting free speech for thousands. What once started as a way to provide a safe way for anti-Vietnam War protesters, has now become an easy pathway to suppress the voices of those with the “unpopular opinion” and dare to challenge the agenda of the universities. Not only are these free speech zones often completely unconstitutional, but they eliminate the discussion that is so often associated with higher levels of learning.

The fight for free speech has always been a hard fight battle. More times than not we see brave students taking on the establishment of their schools to fight for what they deserve. One prime example of this can be seen in Tinker v. Des Moines, a landmark case that stated students still have rights, mainly the First Amendment, when on public funded land. The decision was based on the fact that “Students don’t shed their constitutional rights at the schoolhouse gates.”, meaning that students have every right to peacefully protest, gather, and say anything they want without repercussions from the school. This case not only showed that students cannot be silenced but also became the basis for unlaw action against students. The fight for the First Amendment rights can also be seen in Healy v. James, which was judged on the Tinker Standards, and came to the basis that the organization, Students for a Democratic Society, had every right to use school buildings to have their meetings, seeing as public universities were public forums. This is also backed by the Equal Access Act that prevents schools from discriminating against religious, political, or philosophical groups that wish to have met and share their message.  There are many other cases that have set a precedence of not denying rights to students on public land, yet students are still be censored and confined to their views.

Currently, 33.9% of public colleges and universities received a red light rating from FIRE, Foundation for Individual Rights in Education. The red light rating is defined as a speech code that “both clearly and substantially restricts freedom of speech, or that bars public access to its speech-related policies” this is supplemented by the fact that red light ratings are a direct violation of the First Amendment. This is down from 79% in 2009, but 33.9% is still a substantial amount of schools, especially when 52.8% of the schools looked at received a yellow light rating, that implies the school has policies that could be seen as suppression of students right to expression. With schools implementing free speech zones, sometimes as small as 616 square feet at Pierce College, it not only confines the reach of the messages trying to be advocated but also gives colleges and universities the option to pick and choose the rules they want to follow. The Pierce College case is important for the fact that the students were met with opposition for handing out Spanish versions of the Constitution. By suing Pierce College, Kevin Shaw hopes to show the violation of the First Amendment for restricting speech to a set zone, but also requiring a permit and a set time for the distribution of materials or the spreading of a message.

College campuses were once the place for healthy and lively discussion and debate. Now, it is filtered to ensure that no one is harmed by the truth and limits interaction and dialogue. Attorney General Jeff Sessions stated that colleges “a place of robust debate,” had become “an echo chamber of political correctness and homogenous thought, a shelter for fragile egos.” Going back to the Tinker v. Des Moines case, a student doesn’t lose their rights to free speech or assembly when they enter the world of academia. In the words of George Orwell “If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.” Although the truth may hurt, it still deserves to be shared and not restricted by the authority above.