A new book argues that free speech should be more important than ever in our society because of a growing trend of intolerance and hate.
The book, Free Speech for a Liberal Democracy, by Jonathan Rauch, was published in March by New Press.
Rauches is the author of a number of other books, including the popular New York Times bestseller The Death and Life of Donald Trump: The Unauthorized Biography.
The new book makes the case that free expression is under threat and should be protected at every level of government, including schools, courts, corporations and universities.
The author says there’s a need to rein in the power of speech because the country is in a “post-truth” era and the stakes are so high.
“When the internet is used to bully and intimidate, we cannot afford to allow this kind of unchecked free expression,” Rauche wrote.
“In fact, we should not allow free speech at all.”
Free speech has been the bedrock of the nation since its founding and it will continue to be so for generations to come,” he said.
The free speech debateRauch is an assistant professor of history at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.
He is also a regular commentator on Fox News Channel.
Rauches book is the first to examine the role of free speech in American history, and argues that there’s an underlying need for freedom to counter the rise of intolerance.
Rausch argues that while many people, including conservatives, would like to see speech that they find offensive or harmful curtailed, there’s no “right” to say so.”
The truth is, people who do not like what we do do believe that there is some right to say whatever we want, to express our views and ideas, and that our values are legitimate and worthy of protection,” he wrote.
He also argues that the right to free speech is at stake.”
What’s most important in the long term is the ability to hold and defend those values,” Rausch said.”
There is a tendency to say, ‘Oh, freedom of speech is just for people who like what they hear,’ but what is really going on here is that when people are afraid, the right of the people to speak is being curtailed.
“He said the recent events in Charlottesville, Virginia, have shown us that this kind and peaceful protest movement is not about a narrow set of values.”
It’s about an opportunity to hold these values and to make them part of our common fabric,” Rauls said.
Rauls argues that freedom of expression is at risk because we’re becoming increasingly polarized.”
I think what we’re seeing is the realization that the only way that we’re going to find common ground is through civil discourse, and if you don’t want to have civil discourse in this country, you can’t have it in this world,” Rancher said.