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Re: Freedom Forum report on the State of the First Amendment

Of course you _have_ that right; I was writing in response to
the assertion that the _Constitution_ says you have it,
when in fact it not only says no such thing, but the
Supremes have occasionally ruled substantially differently.
I agree with Jim Choate that the 9th and 10th leave room for
all sorts of rights that nobody in their right mind
would disagree with but which the government keeps trying
to take away anyway....  but that's no excuse for claiming that
things are explicitly stated there when they're not.

At 04:40 PM 1/11/98 -0400, The Sheriff wrote:
>At 8:26 PM -0800 1/10/98, Bill Stewart wrote:
>>>>> Umm, no, freedom doesn't work like that.  If you open a *private*
>>>>> establishment, you have the right, according to the constitution, to
>>>>> deny *anyone* the right to enter or eat in your restraunt.
>>I don't see freedom of association listed anywhere there;
>>you might construe it as a "taking" or something, but it'd be a stretch.
>>Also, there was a really appalling court case in the 1890s
>>(Plessey vs. Ferguson), in which the Supremes ruled that states
>>could require segregation with separate but equal accommodations;
>>it was somewhat overturned by Brown vs. Board of Education in 1954,
>>but the idea that the government can tell you how to run your business
>>is long established (after all, we'd need much smaller governments
>>if they couldn't be interfering in business.)
>Firstly, something being long-established doesn't make it right.
>SO, let's look at it this way, regarding the freedom of association.
>You have the freedom to associate with whom you choose, don't you
>think?  It's not in the constitution, but you would throw a fit if
>Uncle Sam told you that it was illegal for you to go play baseball
>with little Billy if little Billy was black and you were white.
>AND, in my not so humble opinion, If you have the freedom to play
>with little Billy, then you have the freedom to tell little Billy
>to go fuck himself because you refuse to play with "niggers."

Bill Stewart, [email protected]
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