So our website bit the big one on Friday morning, which kind of cramped our plans for Legalization Week’s big finish. Everything seems to be working again, our apologies for the interruption. Without further ado, here it is, the call for legalization that I think might be the most controversial in the issue: Laura Kusisto writes that we should stop the prosecution of hate speech:
We protect religion and equality because we recognize that these freedoms make individuals’ lives better. But we protect expression because unfettered dissent is the only way to protect democracy. When a government official sits across from conservative blogger Ezra Levant in a 25-square-foot conference room and asks him to explain his decision to publish the infamous Danish Mohammed cartoons, she is asking a single citizen to justify his political beliefs before the power of the state. Levant may be a blowhard, but that scenario should give everyone—left, right, whatever—serious pause.
…Which marks one of those exceedingly rare occasions when This Magazine finds itself on the same side of an argument as Ezra Levant — who, incidentally, being a good sport, has donated a copy of his book, Shakedown, which we’ll be raffling off at Thursday’s launch party for the issue.
Be sure to vote in our poll on the issue (see right) and have your say. And check out the whole “Legalize Everything” package of articles, which are now all online for your reading pleasure/rage/irritation/curiosity:
- Tim Falconer: Fix the health care system and end suffering — legalize suicide
- Jordan Heath Rawlings: Pay indie artists and break the music monopoly — legalize music piracy
- Katie Addleman: Crack down on organized crime and save addicts — legalize hard drugs
- Rosemary Counter: Support small farms and get tastier cheese — legalize raw milk
- Laura Kusisto: Strengthen democracy and fight bigotry head-on — legalize hate speech