Thursday, January 21, 2021

Cancel Culture

Some of conservative friends complain to me about cancel culture, which they see as a major threat. Recently they have cited some business decisions as terrible examples of the left’s attempts to stifle speech. The earlier of two recent examples was Amazon’s decision to stop hosting Parler. The second was the decision by some retailers to stop selling My Pillow products.

Speech is never really free. It always comes with costs, consequences. (When I was first ordained I decided to stop using certain words, knowing that I would not always be aware of who could hear me. That minor display of wisdom may have saved me from serious trouble.) The consequences of allowing Parler to be used in planning and carrying out an  insurrection might reasonably include having to find a new host. The consequences of spreading lies about an election might well include losing customers.

I don’t want to stop you from speaking but I don’t have to do business with you. 

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