“Die Gedanken sind frei.”
– “Thoughts are Free,” famous German song about freedom of thought, 1810-1820, author unknown
Shortly after I arrived in the U.S., I realized that the freedom of speech Americans thought they had, was, let’s just say, with no intention of offending anyone, a figment of their naïve imagination.
I was naïve too, having escaped a communist dictatorship, I felt free to speak my objective opinion, thinking that there would be no harmful consequences since my freedom of speech was guaranteed.
I felt elated. I did not have to fear the security police day and night; and I did not have to be mindful constantly of what I said around friends, co-workers, strangers, distant, and close relatives.
Anything that disagreed with the communist regime’s tyrannical propaganda sent anyone to jail, a gulag, or worse yet, disappeared them permanently. If people had a strong constitution, when their jail or gulag time expired, they were set free and hopefully re-educated cheerleaders of the narcissistic president and his wife who thought themselves to be the grandiose parents of the nation. If people’s constitution was weak, they expired in jail from malnutrition, verbal abuse, and daily beatings.
As soon as I came in contact with educators, I realized, there was a problem with freedom of speech. The freedom to speak was not really free. You could speak your mind but you were ostracized, ignored, marginalized, or fired.
First, you had to have a license to teach, a college degree in arts and sciences and professional experience were not enough. Economically speaking, every time someone needs licensure, that limits the number of approved and qualified people to perform a specific profession or trade. In this case, anyone could be a teacher as long as they were willing to go through the College of Education indoctrination program.
Interestingly, many licensed teachers were marginally qualified to teach their subject area of “expertise” and scored poorly on the National Teacher Exam, but passed.
Secondly, the teachers did not have the freedom to choose the curriculum; it was dictated by the Department of Education of each state, directly connected to the federal Department of Education.
In this system, teachers had to follow verbatim the liberal teaching method of the day, and use textbooks designed to help them achieve pre-set goals, very similar to the current Common Core nationalized education curriculum. Could they object to the directives? Yes, but their freedom was speech was neutralized by administrators and the fear of losing their jobs.
As a teacher, I objected to certain irrational methodology and rules, what I perceived to be socialized curricula, to which I got the same canned answer, “This is how we do things in the U.S., if you don’t like it, go back to where you hailed from.”
Later on, as political correctness became the number one weapon used by liberals to stifle freedom of speech, the answer became, “If you do it our way, you get to keep your job.” Some more aggressive administrators said, since you are not a “team player,” we will definitely not renew your contract next year. The threat never materialized. America is a very litigious society, lawyers are expensive, and schools are terribly afraid of being sued, particularly when they don’t have a case.
At the college level, famous for academic freedom, conservatives did not dare express their objective and logical opinions, often contradicting the liberal talking points, lest they never make the tenured professor list. Some conservatives escaped the progressive scrutiny, thus receiving tenure, but it was a rare occurrence.
Conservative students suffered equally under the tyranny of outrageous liberal professors who demanded from their students nothing but total agreement with their belief system; if students were foolish enough to speak their minds and question the “settled” scholarly “authority” of their professors, they failed the class.
The current main stream media talking heads read the identically-worded paragraphs received from the same source daily, not unlike the communist era radio and television reporters behind the Iron Curtain, broadcasting the daily script from the national newspaper called “Romania Libera,” (Free Romania) which was a terrible contradiction, since we were such slaves. The paper reported as much truth as the Soviet era newspaper Pravda (The Truth).
Politicians today regurgitate the positions fed to them by advisors and lobbyists. Liberal newspapers repeat the misinformation established by the Democrat Party, the union lobby, and the non-governmental organizations lobby.
Conservatives writers and radio talk show hosts self-censor their columns and shows for fear of litigation by powerful billionaires, ethnic lobby groups, and NGOs.
Employees hide their political views for fear of losing their jobs. Parishioners do not express their opinions in the ever more socialist churches because they don’t want to lose their place of worship or the community they’ve grown accustomed to.
Conservatives don’t plaster cars with bumper stickers that reflect their world views for fear of having cars vandalized or destroyed. Liberals are proud to display all their causes on bumpers and car windows – they know the opposition is peaceful, tolerant, rational, and non-violent. Yet liberals label conservatives “racist” and “hate mongers” if they disagree with progressive points of view, thus shutting down any opposition.
Recently, Rush Limbaugh discussed on his August 27, 2013 show the case of Mike Adams, “the only tenured conservative professor at the University of North Carolina system, who simply said that marriage is a union between a man and a woman.” Anger and outrage from the faculty ensued, demanding that Adams be fired because of his definition of marriage – so much for the world-famous academic freedom.
Mike Adams wrote a “Dear Edward” letter to the professor who wanted him fired and who called him “an embarrassment to higher education.”
“While I respect your right to conclude that I am the biggest embarrassment to higher education in America, I think you’re wrong. In fact, I don’t even think I’m the biggest embarrassment to higher education in the state of North Carolina. But since you’re a liberal and you support ‘choice’ – provided we’re talking about dismembering children and not school vouchers for those who weren’t dismembered – I want to give you some options. In fact, I’m going to describe the antics of ten professors, official campus groups, and invited campus speakers in North Carolina and let you decide which constitutes the biggest embarrassment to higher education.”
The ten examples cited were approved forms of free speech in liberal academia.
1. A women’s studies professor and a psychology professor at Western Carolina University co-sponsored in the early spring semester of 2013 a panel on bondage and S&M with the goal “to teach college students how to inflict pain on themselves and others for sexual pleasure.”
2. At UNC Chapel Hill, “a feminist professor believes that women can lead happy lives without men. That’s nothing new. But what’s different is that she thinks women can form lifelong domestic partnerships with dogs and that those relationships will actually be fulfilling enough to replace marital relationships with men.”
3. “At Duke University, feminists hired a ‘sex worker’ (read: prostitute) to speak as part of an event called the Sex Workers Art Show.” I am too embarrassed to repeat what the male prostitute did after his speech. It involved the rectum, a burning sparkler, and the singing of the Star Spangled Banner.
4. “A porn star was once paid to give a speech at UNCG. The topic was ‘safe sodomy.’ After her speech, the feminist pornographer sold autographed butt plugs to students in attendance.”
5. “A few years ago at UNC-Chapel Hill, a feminist group built a large vibrator museum in the middle of the campus quad as part of their ‘orgasm awareness week.’”
6. “A feminist administrator at UNC-Wilmington sponsored a pro-abortion event. During the event they sold tee shirts saying ‘I had an abortion’ to students who… well, had abortions,” a not so subtle way to “encourage students to boast about the fact that they had killed their own children.”
7. “The same UNCW administrator sponsored a workshop teaching students how to appreciate their orgasms.”
8. “A UNCW English professor posted nude pictures of under-aged girls as part of an ‘art exhibit’ in the university library. The Provost then ordered the nude pictures to be move away from the library and into the university union.” The incensed English professor asked the Faculty Senate to censure the Provost for violating her ‘academic freedom.’ The Faculty Senate sided with the feminist professor. The Provost was later pressured to leave the university.”
9. “A different feminist professor at UNCW accused a male professor of putting tear gas in her office. She was later caught putting her mail in a microwave oven. She did this because she thought people were trying to poison her with anthrax and that the oven would neutralize the toxins. She was not placed on leave for psychiatric reasons. Instead, she was designated as the university’s official ‘counter terrorism’ expert.”
10. “And then there is Mike Adams. He thinks marriage is between a man and a woman, and he is the biggest embarrassment on campus.” http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2013/08/27/why_are_feminists_judging_miley_cyrus
Mike Adams, a criminology professor at Wilmington, wrote a book entitled “Letters to a Young Progressive: How to Avoid Wasting Your Life Protesting Things That You Don’t Understand.” I must hurry and order this book before it is censored and disappears off the shelves.
At the end of the day in America, I still have my freedom of silence and my thoughts are still free until they invent a computer that can read my mind. Have they?