Free Speech vs. Right to bear arms

Chapped Ass

Not all drugs are bad.
Oct 23, 2013
If you had to lose one of these two rights, which would you rather lose and why?


Speech. (because your premise states I must choose either)

Why? Because I have never had my life threatened by words, or the fear of words.

I have never felt that because I could SAY what I wanted against the central government that somehow my life was more powerful for it.

Still ... losing the FREEDOM of SPEECH would be a devasting blow that would LIKELY lead to the NEED for the 2nd amedment to be used by the masses.

Freedom of speech includes the right:

  • Not to speak (specifically, the right not to salute the flag).
    West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette, 319 U.S. 624 (1943).
  • Of students to wear black armbands to school to protest a war (“Students do not shed their constitutional rights at the schoolhouse gate.”).
    Tinker v. Des Moines, 393 U.S. 503 (1969).
  • To use certain offensive words and phrases to convey political messages.
    Cohen v. California, 403 U.S. 15 (1971).
  • To contribute money (under certain circumstances) to political campaigns.
    Buckley v. Valeo, 424 U.S. 1 (1976).
  • To advertise commercial products and professional services (with some restrictions).
    Virginia Board of Pharmacy v. Virginia Consumer Council, 425 U.S. 748 (1976); Bates v. State Bar of Arizona, 433 U.S. 350 (1977).
  • To engage in symbolic speech, (e.g., burning the flag in protest).
    Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397 (1989); United States v. Eichman, 496 U.S. 310 (1990).

Freedom of speech does not include the right:

  • To incite actions that would harm others (e.g., “hout[ing] ‘fire’ in a crowded theater.”).
    Schenck v. United States, 249 U.S. 47 (1919).
  • To make or distribute obscene materials.
    Roth v. United States, 354 U.S. 476 (1957).
  • To burn draft cards as an anti-war protest.
    United States v. O’Brien, 391 U.S. 367 (1968).
  • To permit students to print articles in a school newspaper over the objections of the school administration.
    Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, 484 U.S. 260 (1988).
  • Of students to make an obscene speech at a school-sponsored event.
    Bethel School District #43 v. Fraser, 478 U.S. 675 (1986).
  • Of students to advocate illegal drug use at a school-sponsored event.
    Morse v. Frederick, __ U.S. __ (2007).


Also, it is useful to note that in places that there is limited or no freedom to protest (speech) there is also no public right to own firearms. AND that is Why I consider the 1st and 2nd amendments to the US constitution to be close born Twins rather than long separated siblings.

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Chapped Ass

Not all drugs are bad.
Oct 23, 2013
I disagree. When I say lose the 'right' I'm speaking about the legallity of it, not necessarily your ability to do it anyways.

For instance, I would choose to lose the right to bear arms. That means I no longer have the legal right to own firearms...I'm going to do it anyways, but, I need to be secretive about it. I need to be careful about not letting anyone know, or else I'll be subject to punishment.

In the meantime, though, I can still bitch about it. I can tell people what a travesty of justice it is that this right has been taken away. I have the collective 'power' of vocally finding like-minded people to band together with.

Now let's turn that around and say I can bear arms, but I can't speak freely. If I'm a hermit who doesn't want to be a part of this society it might work. But otherwise, I'll be surrounded by enemies. Never being able to speak my mind on any subject freely without someone I know (maybe even a trusted loved one) running to the state to tattle on me for expressing thoughts. THOUGHTS. Not, deadly bullets, not weapons of destruction.....mere fucking brain droppings. To me, this existence would be insufferable.

If you try to use guns to get your freedom of speech back, you'll die in a hale of gunfire. If you try to use speech to get your freedom to bear arms, you at least stand the chance of public opinion siding with you. Public opinion will be whatever the state wants it to be when you lose the freedom of speech. There's not going to be anyone showing up with their guns to help you defend your freedom of speech because they're never going to hear about it. You can have a truck full of bazookas, and you'll never be free again if you lose the right to express your intentions. You'll just be another well armed villain in the history books.