I caught this on facebook over the past day.
Ryan Howlett, the current CEO of South Dakota Friends of Public Broadcasting in his role as a private citizen is calling and encouraging others to call and attempt to put pressure on the Empire Mall, because he noticed that a retailer is selling t-shirts and other items imprinted with the Confederate Battle Flag:
My immediate thought was that despite it being done privately, it’s a fairly public advocacy action that some might find controversial wth his post for people to call up the Empire Mall and demanding the imposition of his views of what he believes to be politically correct from a corporation against a local retailer…when his job is to raise money from retailers & corporations.
Why are we at a point in our country where we feel we need to be our brother’s censor?
Our society seems to be moving away from embracing the rights enshrined in the constitution into using heavy handed tactics to punish and muzzle the opinions of people we disagree with.
Ryan is certainly entitled to his views, but I can’t help but go back to concerns about infringing upon free speech, and freedom of expression.
When it comes to matters of economic censorship, shouldn’t retailers have a right to sell items that are legal to sell, letting the marketplace decide whether they wish to endorse the product via a purchase? (I.E., If you don’t like it, don’t buy it.)