Happy Easter! Brownstone Activism-Various And Sundry Links

A breath of fresh air from George Packer at the New Yorker: ‘Mute Button:

‘The problem with free speech is that it’s hard, and self-censorship is the path of least resistance. But, once you learn to keep yourself from voicing unwelcome thoughts, you forget how to think them—how to think freely at all—and ideas perish at conception. Washiqur Rahman and Avijit Roy had more to fear than most of us, but they lived and died as free men.’

Maybe this kind of moral courage will make a comeback…

As for free speech and public sentiment, perhaps we’ll see where a new speech beachhead lies as the tide recedes from the powerful pull of an activist moon.

The problem with ‘brownstone activism’ may be the material itself:

‘Brownstone is a word used both to refer to a type of building material and structures built or sheathed in it. While it is most closely associated with the Eastern United States, this material was at one point used all over the world in construction, particularly in upper class regions. A distinctive architectural style using brownstone is very familiar to many residents of industrialized nations. Its popularity as a building material waned when builders began to realize that it weathered poorly, and that other materials might be more suitable.’

Soft, crumbly, loosely aggregated, weathers poorly…

Christopher Hitchens at Slate: Yale Surrenders

See Also:  If you thought the cartoons were bad, more on the Fitna movie here.  From The NY Times: Review Of Christopher Caldwell’s Book “Reflections on the Revolution in Europe: Immigration, Islam, and the West”  Libertarians love this issue:  Repost-A Canadian Libertarian Making Noise: Ezra Levant  

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Via Blackfive:  ‘Abraham Lincoln And Cybersecurity’

‘A discussion on the pressing public policy challenges that Americans now face balancing our Nation’s democratic ideals of privacy, freedom of expression, intellectual property rights, and the free-flow of information with national security.’

It may be wise to recognize the direct threats, dangers, and challenges all Americans face to their infrastructure and institutions.  From EMPs to state-sponsored hacking, to cyber-terrorism to….you name it.  The moral challenges arising from such threats tend to be better handled when more people take-up the burden.  This blog believes the truth is better arrived at in such a fashion, as well as reasonable policy.

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Yuval Levin at The Corner invokes James Madison and John Locke on the RFRA announcement: ‘The Church Of The Left:’

What kind of public square would you like to have?:

‘We who are appalled by the perverse reaction to the Indiana law are not exactly defending the free exercise right; we are in a sense opposing a violation of the prohibition on religious establishment. The point is not that running a flower shop is a way of practicing one’s religion. The point is that, if reasonably possible, people should not be compelled as the price of entry to the public square to honor as true what their understanding of their religious obligations compels them to judge false. Whether you share in the particular substantive views of progressivism or not, surely you ought to agree that it should not become our state religion.

If you haven’t noticed the turf-war going on, and the ideas, policies and ‘rights’ most activists seek to impose as well as most religious organizations, maybe you haven’t been paying attention. A lot of people who claim civility really mean ‘their’ civility, just like a lot of people who claim the protection of speech seek to impose their own limitations upon the speech of others.

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