Archive for July, 2015

So let’s talk “black lives matter”/”all lives matter.”

When a weak point in an army’s line of defense is under heavy fire, and the commanding general seems oblivious and unconcerned, someone must point out the weakness, as insistently as necessary for the weakness to be addressed. If the general’s response is “the whole line matters” he is, in his unassailable correctness, missing the point.


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“This man has insulted me!” said Syme, with gestures of explanation.
“Insulted you?” cried the gentleman with the red rosette, “when?”
“Oh, just now,” said Syme recklessly. “He insulted my mother.”
“Insulted your mother!” exclaimed the gentleman incredulously.
“Well, anyhow,” said Syme, conceding a point, “my aunt.”

“But how can the Marquis have insulted your aunt just now?” said the second gentleman with some legitimate wonder. “He has been sitting here all the time.”

“Ah, it was what he said!” said Syme darkly.

“I said nothing at all,” said the Marquis, “except something about the band. I only said that I liked Wagner played well.”

“It was an allusion to my family,” said Syme firmly. “My aunt played Wagner badly. It was a painful subject. We are always being insulted about it.”

“This seems most extraordinary,” said the gentleman who was decore, looking doubtfully at the Marquis.

“Oh, I assure you,” said Syme earnestly, “the whole of your conversation was simply packed with sinister allusions to my aunt’s weaknesses.”

“This is nonsense!” said the second gentleman. “I for one have said nothing for half an hour except that I liked the singing of that girl with black hair.”

“Well, there you are again!” said Syme indignantly. “My aunt’s was red.”

“It seems to me,” said the other, “that you are simply seeking a pretext to insult the Marquis.”

“By George!” said Syme, facing round and looking at him, “what a clever chap you are!”

G.K. Chesterton, The Man Who Was Thursday ch. x (1908).

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1. When the government declines to license, endorse, use or participate in any conduct, opinion, or symbol, it does not follow that it has “banned” that conduct, opinion or symbol, nor that it has violated your right to participate in that conduct, hold and express that opinion, or use that symbol;
2. When retailers, service providers and broadcasting networks decline to sell certain products or services, or broadcast certain programs, that does not mean that anyone is violating your rights — unless you have paid for and/or entered into a valid contract for those particular goods, services or programs;
(3) If someone proffers an opinion you find disagreeable, or contradicts something you say, he is not violating your rights. He is exercising his. You may join him;
(4) If any of the foregoing principles bothers you, there is a good chance that you have an exaggerated idea of your own rights and an underdeveloped view of your neighbors’.

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