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     Our friend Bret Hart recently sent a speech that (of all people) the Prez of the N.R.A., Charlton Heston, made in 1999 (at Harvard Law School).      I'm taking (some of) the things he said out of context, but I believe his speech (still) supports some of the feelings I've had about recent posting experiences on NewsGroups (NG's) & discussion lists... you don't want to hear all the details of my postings there, nor do you even need to know the thrust of the content... but a bunch of "enforcers" came in on top of the discussions I'd initiated (in my usual acidic fashion) & said that I "couldn't say that"... that "they didn't want to hear it", & that my opinion "didn't count".   Now... read one of the things Heston had to say (regarding some of the flak he's taken over things he's said about guns, gun control & the like...) 

"As I have stood in the crosshairs of those who target Second Amendment freedoms, I've realized that firearms are not the only issue. No, it's much, much bigger than that.  I've come to understand that a cultural war is raging across our land, in which, with Orwellian fervor,
certain acceptable thoughts and speech are mandated."

     Just because someone (on a NG, chat group, or on a radio TALK show, for that matter) doesn't "like" the way we express our thoughts & opinions... doesn't mean we shouldn't express them EXACTLY as we wish to!   As Mr. Heston continued his speech, he went on to say that some media articles (& even his friends) seemed to be saying to him:

"Chuck, how dare you speak your mind. You are using language not authorized for public
 consumption!  But I am not afraid. If Americans believed in political correctness, we'd still be King George's boys subjects bound to the British crown."

     "Political Correctness" on the nets is foisted on us under the guise of "netiquette", which is (very) often just a way of folks on the nets telling you that you're making them uncomfortable.... the message I hear coming through LOUD & CLEAR is... "you don't have a right to say what you're saying".  How contrary is THAT to the ideals that our constitution (based on REBELLION against King G. & his cronies, remember) was supposed to have been founded on?  NO ONE has the right to tell another what they can (or can't) say (I believe).  You may not believe that, & you have a perfect right to your belief... but let's all pray to the FORCES that there are more who are on the side of your right to say what you really THINK!  & what better audience for Charlton Heston to illustrate that point to as follows...

"Who here thinks your professors can say what they really believe? It scares me to death, and should scare you too, that the superstition of political correctness rules the halls of reason.  You are the best and the brightest. You, here in the fertile cradle of American academia, here in the castle of learning on the Charles River, you are the cream. But I submit that you, and your counterparts across the land, are the most socially conformed and politically silenced generation since Concord Bridge. And as long as you validate that and abide it ... you are-by your grandfathers' standards-cowards."   


"If you talk about race, it does not make you a racist. If you see distinctions between the genders, it does not make you a sexist. If you think critically about a denomination, it does not make you anti-religion. If you accept but don't celebrate homosexuality, it does not make you a homophobe.  Don't let America's universities continue to serve as incubators for this rampant epidemic of new McCarthyism."

     I, for one, am not the bravest man in the world.... I am (always) afraid of bullies, because I think they (whether musclebound apes or wolves garbed in politician's button-down suits) are the people folks in this country NEED to be prepared to stand up against!  SO - when people (no matter where it may be) tell you that you shouldn't "SAY such things"... tell them (ever so politely, perhaps) to RAM IT UP THEIR SNOUT!  

     I'm not talking about using words to damage others, either... ethnic slurs or other forms of hatred can be just as lethal as weapons... in fact, I believe it is our DUTY to stand up when others do that & speak out against them.  To TELL them we do not agree with their use of language as a weapon against others... in fact, to tell them (when it is obvious to us) that we will not TOLERATE such verbal ignorance.  

     As Mr. Heston implies, though, we do our children EVERMORE damage when we put up with the idea that we should "stop saying what we believe".  Men and women of (true) courage (in my eyes) are those who STAND UP & FIGHT for their right to state their case... to THINK what they think... & to DO what they DO!   Nothing less will do!  Think about THAT... & come away from it determined NOT to be a coward... I hope - after all, I did not spend some years over 20 in the military to defend politically correct spineless blobs!

Till next time....


Rotcod Zzaj


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