People fought hard for freedoms; they didn't fight hard for one mentality. If you really talk about what the country was founded on and what those people are protecting who went to war and fought these wars and give us our freedoms and are fighting for our freedoms, I think you have to really ask yourself what is involved in freedom.
I want to be able to get my point across. I respect people expressing their freedoms and their liberties and their rights, but at the same time I'm almost mindful that my freedoms can be other people's downfalls. I don't want to flash my freedoms in your face all the time, especially if they're going to be detrimental. I can get you to understand my point without going overboard, and we're cool.
I studied English Literature. I wasn't a very good student, but one thing I did get from it, while I was making films at the same time with the college film society, was that I started thinking about the narrative freedoms that authors had enjoyed for centuries and it seemed to me that filmmakers should enjoy those freedoms as well.
There is no doubt that constitutional freedoms will never be abolished in one fell swoop, for the American people cherish their freedoms, and would not tolerate such a loss if they could perceive it. But the erosion of freedom rarely comes as an all-out frontal assault but rather as a gradual, noxious creeping, cloaked in secrecy, and glossed over by reassurances of greater security.
Freedom is a timeless value. The United Nations Charter calls for encouraging respect for fundamental freedoms. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights mentions freedom more than twenty times. All countries have committed to protecting individual freedoms on paper - but in practice, too many break their pledge.
The freedoms which had been so hard won from colonial domination were being crushed by Soviet-inspired and funded military and political forces. Their clear intention was to deprive the people of their democratic freedoms. As history shows, this is what had happened in the Soviet Union and in Cuba, and continues to be the case in other parts of the world.
I say let's go back to a truer use of the word 'freedom.' Let's start with President Franklin Roosevelt's Four Freedoms: freedom of speech and expression, freedom of worship, freedom from want and freedom from fear. I would add the freedom to bargain collectively. Those freedoms are under attack today.
We are close to a consensus that the Kyoto Protocol does huge economic, political, social and ecological damage to the Russian Federation. In addition, it certainly violates the rights and freedoms of Russian citizens, and well as the rights and freedoms of citizens in those countries which signed and ratified it.
I think the American people would be compassionate and practical. But we need to be talking about assimilation as well, something that is politically incorrect, I know, to say that people should learn English, should learn American exceptionalism, shouldn't come here to use our freedoms to undermine the freedoms we give to everybody. But there's nothing wrong with saying people who want to come here should want to be Americans.
The so-called liberals of today have the very popular idea that freedom of speech, of thought, of the press, freedom of religion, freedom from imprisonment without trial-that all these freedoms can be preserved in the absence of what is called economic freedom. They do not realize that, in a system where there is no market, where the government directs everything, all those other freedoms are illusory, even if they are made into laws and written up in constitutions.
Ludwig von Mises
But no one is totally free. No one goes to work and tells everyone what they really feel. You can't yell 'fire' in a theatre. You can't go over a certain speed limit, (Some freedoms are best curtailed) You can't paint your house any ole color you want if you live on a street that has a Home Owners Association-some people like orange or purple. Isn't beauty in the eye of the beholder? You can't even build your house without it passing certain specifications if you live in Santa Barbara, California... So, there are few freedoms we all share but there is one we do: We are all FREE to believe or not.
Rukaiyah Laurel Hill Abdulsalam
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights - This great and inspiring instrument was born of an increased sense of responsibility by the international community for the promotion and protection of man's basic rights and freedoms. The world has come to a clear realization of the fact that freedom, justice and world peace can only be assured through the international promotion and protection of these rights and freedoms.