Monday, June 02, 2008

Pay attention, class

Listen up, kids: blogging that your teacher is a douchebag can have consequences:
"If you're class secretary at your high school and your annoying school bureaucrats won't let you schedule your battle of the bands when you want, what do you do?

Go home and call them "douchebags" on your blog!

Ars Technica reports that Connecticut high-school senior Avery Doninger did that, and, not surprisingly, the school bureaucrats took umbrage. Specifically, they she couldn't be class secretary anymore. And, in typical American fashion, she and her parents sued. And lost. Even in the court of appeals." [...]

And that little item is from the U S of A, no less, where freedom of speech is considered a sacrosanct right to be fucked with at one's peril, where anything and everything goes, speech-wise. At least according to the denizens of Wingnuttia North, who never tire of reminding us how inferior this tyrannical socialist gulag of ours is to the free and wide-open speech spaces enjoyed by our southern neighbours. But --

"People sometimes hallucinate that the First Amendment not only gives you the right to say whatever boneheaded or offensive stuff you want--but means that your saying it won't have any personal or professional consequences (such as others deciding not to employ you anymore or regarding you as a moron). It doesn't."

So what did we learn today? Even in the Home of the Brave and Land of the Free, free speech comes with a certain amount of responsibility... and pretty much the same ultimate consequences when the free speech is free stupid speech.