"What I don't tolerate, and what I believe the Constitution doesn't protect, is speech designed to provoke hate or violence against groups of people. Period. So, when I saw bright-green posters declaring, "DIE YUPPIE SCUM DIE," I recognized the hate speech.
Substitute "Yuppie" with "Jew," and you see what I mean. About 70 years ago, Hitler rallied his National Socialists against the Jews - mainly because the Jews could be easily singled out, but also because they were successful, and it was easy to convince the Germans that the reason for all of their feelings of loss or oppression were caused by the "rich Jews." It's nice to sneak hate in through the back door, isn't it?
So, in protest of these signs - calling for the death of total strangers, for no other reason than that they're perceived to be richer than us, and therefore the cause of all of our misery - I began taking them down.
After about 12 posters, I was approached by Jerry The Peddler, an East Village fixture, political activist, organizer and general hustler for the antiwar movement. He asked what I thought I was doing, and I showed him the poster and explained that it was hate speech and shouldn't be tolerated. He acknowledged that I was right - it was hate speech, and, he added, "I hate Yuppies." I told him he had no right to call for their death, as I reached to take down another of his hate-filled posters. He grabbed my left hand - technically an assault - and bent my finger back. "I'll break your fingers, so that you'll never play guitar again, and if I see anymore of these posters down.I'll kill you," he said. You know the look of hate, and he had it in his eyes.
This is the true antiwar movement. These are the peace activists that you see when you turn on your TV and see a report about a protest or riot in New York City: "Support the antiwar movement - or we'll kill you."
It doesn't matter to them that I've defended their right to express their views for the last 30 years; because I "question" their motives, they've decided that I have no right to exist.
Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH