The liberal New York Times Editorial Board today joined conservative Bill O’Reilly in criticizing Pamela Geller for holding a provocative Muhammed Art Exhibit and Contest in Garland. These fine folks point out that the contest wasn’t about free speech, but rather it was about hatred and bigotry. To them I ask, does the First Amendment only protect fair and reasonable people?
The editorial board and Bill O’Reilly seem to think that America is giving its imprimatur on Geller by protecting her contest. I say America is not approving the substance of the contest, but it is approving her right to have it.
In all this hubbub, I haven’t heard a single commentator refer to that traditional description of free speech – “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”