Is there a responsibility to speak properly in public? How do we define our constitutional right?
The United States is unusually different from most countries in this world. If we have opinions that differ from those of our government, we are allowed to say what we feel without repercussion, such as being put into prison or killed for differing, as in Sharia law . Yet there are times that what we say brings on reaction or even punishment. For instance, we would be in deep trouble if we shouted fire in a crowded theater, called in a bomb threat, or deliberately maligned a person to ruin his reputation. These types of things go beyond free speech.
Another type of abuse of free speech that doesn’t call for punishment, but maybe should, is such as the privately filmed movie that was recently released on the airwaves desecrating the religion of Muslim. The film makers obviously do not care for the Islam religion and had the right to voice their opinion. There is diversity of opinion as to how the religion of Islam came into being, and the creators of this movie took the purportedly negative things about the prophet Mohamed and turned them into a satiric denigration. If it were a more private thing, it could be termed tasteless, but for this travesty to go global, it was grossly at fault. It gave those who hate us anyway an excuse to unleash the dogs of war.
In another country if something like this had happened, the author of such a film would be in prison if not dead. I thank God our country doesn’t react against its citizens who don’t use discretion in what they put out for the rest of us, but I wish to heaven that discretion would be more readily available to rabble rousers.