Free speech does need its limits

Free speech does need its limits

Jaden Fortier, Staff Writer

Everytime someone comes out with a statement that could be deemed controversial, there’s always a flock of people coming to that person’s defense for the sake of freedom of speech. In some situations it can be just. People’s words can be twisted in ways that completely divert from what they actually meant. However, cases where a person is explicitly using their platform to promote hateful ideas and thoughts should be where the line is drawn.

Over the past few weeks it feels like Kanye West has been going on a tour of podcasts, posts and news shows promoting his hateful thoughts and comments on Jewish people. West has been making statements that Jewish people control all of media and entertainment and that they “own the Black voice”, with this comment coming from a hip-hop podcast called “Drink Champs”. Because of a slew of antisemetic comments West made, he has been dropped from almost every company he has partnerships with which includes Adidas, Gap, Def Jam Records, Balenciaga and plenty other brands have made the decision to no longer work with the rapper. 

Now instead of owning up to his actions, West doubled down on his antisemetic thoughts and made Jewish people at fault for his downfall. He believes he is being called by “the Jewish media.” Despite all the gross negativity West is using his and other people’s platform to spew, there are people coming to his defense that he is allowed to make such comments under the guise of free speech. There is truth to this statement, as comments that most people deem as hate speech are legally protected under our First Amendment right.

However, why should hate speech be allowed to be promoted to billions across the world? What good comes out of that? 

I understand that everyone has a right to their own opinion and rightfully so, With that, but we also have the right to criticize people for said opinions. If everyone is mostly allowed to say whatever they want in this country we should also be allowed to criticize and possibly silence those that make hateful comments. Getting off free for the hateful things we say only enables us to do those things more because we know we won’t face any repercussions for saying them.

 People can believe in whatever they want to believe in, but they should not be surprised when they say something completely out of line and face backlash for what they say. Everything we put out there for the public domain to see and hear can have its own potential consequences. We all have to face the consequences of our words and actions, that’s just how the world works.