Free Speech, the ultimate two edged sword.

Free Speech, the two-edged sword

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Everybody -and their mama– knows about what’s been going on this way.

“Conservative Christian Mom Blogger lights up the internet when she cancels her family vacation to Disney World over Gay Character.”

I guess you can say I’m pretty over it. Believe me, there isn’t one question, comment, or ‘witty’ response I hadn’t heard yet. But if you think you’ve got somebody beat, you can try to surprise me.

Free Speech, the ultimate two edged sword.

Igniting a firestorm is definitely what I did. But, I guess my biggest concern is “What ever happened to free speech?“.

Two-edged sword: something that has or can have both favorable and unfavorable consequences.

This Modest Mom's Facebook Page ClaimNot long after I announced canceling our Disney Trip, I had to make another announcement on This Modest Mom’s Facebook Page.

There’s a big difference between me and the majority of people who commented on my blog and other social channels.

When I see something I don’t like, I keep moving. If it offends me enough, I may share it to my personal page with thoughts, or I may even write a blog post about it. If it irks me too much, I’ll block it to get it out of the way, say a little prayer, and then move on.

 

I’m not tooting my own horn or anything, but I can honestly say that I’ve never taken to degrading someone else because of their opinion.

You see, I believe in free speech. Most of the things that I post here on TMM are my opinions- hence FREE SPEECH. I can’t expect that my voice is heard and not entertain the voices of others.

I had friends that begged me to turn commenting completely off. Shut down my blog for a while. Close my email account until things settled down. Hideout behind all my social media channels. I didn’t do that.

My response was simple. I believe that everyone has the right to express their opinions on what I said. Everyone’s voice should be heard, but out of respect for yourself and the one whom you’re directing your comments, those opinions should be expressed in a tasteful way.

Let’s be honest, I have yet to be able to moderate all of the comments on social media, especially Facebook. So if you’re brave enough to scour through the uncensored posts, go for it. There are more than enough comments to make your skin crawl. It’s absolutely disgusting.

My personal pages reflect my personal beliefs and convictions. You’ll never find foul language, dirty photos, or anything that doesn’t align with the Bible. I expect my blog and business to do the same. You’ll see tons of comments that don’t agree with me and that chose to express their opinions respectfully, without foul language and demeaning terms. But what I hope won’t be there much longer, are those that haven’t followed this example.

“Freedom of speech does not mean freedom from responsibility for the consequences of your speech”. I wish I could count how many times I was told versions of this over the past few weeks.

Do me a favor and search Google for anything remotely related to my post; “modest mom Disney”, “mom cancels Disney trip”, “Brooke Poston”. Read through the pages upon pages of articles that talk about it all. Search it on Facebook, read the comments.

The truth is, I could really care less what people have to say on their own. What I don’t think is fair is the harsh reaction that was directed at me personally.

So the biggest problem wasn’t that people took to their own pages/blogs with their disagreements/concerns. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to hear anyone’s opinions. The issue was that they took to my own as their platform.

They took to my personal Instagram and Facebook and commented relentlessly about my family, my children, my appearance, my religion. I had to report harassment. Someone hacked and shared my personal email, my home address, and my cell phone number all over the web. They purposely set out to make a mockery of me by being crude.

Whether you read my blog or not, that was your choice. Whether you found it on your own, or you stumbled upon it, you were still faced with a decision of whether to read or not. Unfortunately, when you post your belittling comments on my personal Facebook, or my business pages when you harass me through email, I don’t have that same luxury.

My thoughts weren’t directed to any one person, but every comment and email and every ugly thing you responded with, was to me personally.

I understand that my opinions, should they be expressed, don’t come without repercussions. Free speech is that two-edged sword. It comes with both favorable and unfavorable returns.

But a company’s right to censor your offensive content is protected by the first amendment. Taking your opinion to a platform/channel that isn’t your own opens you up to be censored by the owner of the said platform/channel.

Don’t ever let the possibility of a negative return sway your decision to express your point of view.

If I had worried about the backlash that I could receive, I would have never met some of these amazing people that I know have my back. I wouldn’t have new opportunities sent my way. I wouldn’t have been encouraged by a number of people, by that remnant, that the Lord still has left.

1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.