Questions for the people.
Why do you suppose there is a right to free speech in the US Constitution?
What so you see as the benefits of free speech?
Is it OK to scream “FIRE!” At the top of your lungs in a crowded theater when you know there is no fire?
Why do we need a license to own a car? Why do we have to prove that we know both the rules of the road and how to drive?
Why does almost everyone drive on the “correct” side of the road almost all of the time? Sure, it saves many lives and crippling accidents, but doesn’t it impinge on our freedom of expression?
Is there a distinction between freedom of expression and freedom of action?
Do you think people should be free to do whatever they want whenever they want regardless of how much it hurts others?
When is it okay for government to restrict personal choices?
Who exactly would benefit from a Civil War in America?
If there were a Civil War in America and the “north” won again, how should they treat those in the “south”?
If dictatorships are such a wonderful form of government, why do so many people risk their lives in order to leave them? And, again, if they’re so wonderful, why do they try to prevent their citizens from leaving? Why do they suppress criticism?
If a person says, “I am not a crook!” Does that prove he’s not a crook? How about if he screams it really, really loudly?
When is it better to keep being conned by a con man and when is it better to admit you were conned?
Some of the media lean left and some of the media lean right.
But nearly all the media lean toward the reporting of division and violence over the reporting of unity and peace. It’s understandable. We attend far more to things that make us afraid or angry than things that just seem pleasant. That means the advertisers who largely fund the media will push networks and newspapers and magazines to carry stories about division and violence. Is there anything that can be done? How much would you be willing to pay for news sources that were only funded by subscription and not by advertisers?
At the end of the Harry Potter movies, when the major source of evil, Voldemort, is vanquished and Harry himself has the most powerful wand, what do you suppose he does with it? Why?
What would you be willing to change in your own life if it would mean your great-grandchildren would likely have a much cleaner, safer, and more beautiful world than if you change nothing? Would you be willing to pay higher taxes? Change your habits? Travel less? Elect politicians who care about the environment?
Most scientists agree that climate change is real, exacerbated by human activity and that there will be disastrous consequences. But some people say it is a giant hoax. How can you tell which is correct? Why do you suppose some people might be motivated to say it’s a hoax even though it isn’t?
Large International Corporations have a lot of power in determining policies in America (and in most other countries). They rely on and benefit from our roads, ports, broadband, educated workforce, electricity, police, fire departments. Many pay zero taxes. What they do pay is lots and lots of campaign dollars to politicians. Do you think this might influence politicians to do what’s best for those large corporations rather than what’s best for America as a whole? If not, what do you think prevents that from happening?
If the majority of people in a state vote for a candidate but the people’s choice is overturned by a partisan state legislature, what do you think that would do to the quality and ethics of the candidates in office? How do you think the majority will react?
Who would benefit from a Civil War in America?
What do you think would happen to a baseball game in which one side consistently refused to abide by the umpires call?
What do you think would happen to a basketball game in which one side consistently refused to admit that the opposing team had scored?
How could a dictatorial head of state benefit by instituting policies that would actually increase the number of citizens who sickened and died from a deadly pandemic?
How do you decide when it is the right time to break the Elder Wand?
Essays on America: The Update Problem
Essays on America: The Stopping Rule
The Myths of the Veritas: The Orange Man
The Myths of the Veritas: Stoned Soup
The Myths of the Veritas: Three Blind Mice
The Loud Defense of Untenable Positions
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