Justice Hugo L. Black Quote

“Without deviation, without exception, without any ifs, buts, or whereases, freedom of speech means that you shall not do something to people either for the views they express, or the words they speak or write.”

~ Justice Hugo L. Black

One Man's Stand For Freedom, 1963

Ratings and Comments


Mike, Norwalk

Not shooting the messenger, a good general overview.

Durham, Birmingham, AL

Wrong! Wrong! Wrong! You can't charge them with a crime, but you absolutely can respond individually in non-violent ways. You certainly can tell them what you think and refuse to associate with them.

Ronw13, Oregon

Well said, Mike

E Archer, NYC

I suppose the phrase "do something to" is vague enough to weaken the argument. So, it all depends on what the "do something" is.

The recent Trump election has been the excuse for a lot of people "doing something to" others that have spoken and voted for Trump. Trump supporters - students and faculty alike - have been beaten, intimidated with death threats, have been refused public services, businesses and property destroyed, IRS targeted, insulted by employers, insulted by celebrities, talking heads, bureaucrats -- and all use whatever power available to them to HURT those who dare to speak and vote their conscience.

This is neo-liberalism, the intolerant, and frankly the irresponsible, and thus they are oppressed by their own ideology -- a purgatory of their own making. I do not deny their suffering, only their claimed cause.

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