The Herald Bulletin

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Letters

May 8, 2014

Viewpoint: We're entering world of the thought police

As a child I remember reading about how in the Communist and Fascist countries years ago you had to be careful not only about what you said in public but what you said even in the privacy of your own home to your own family.

You could be overheard by neighbors, who could be rewarded for turning you in for making inappropriate remarks about the government. You could even be denounced by your own children, who were routinely encouraged by their schoolteachers to turn in their parents if things said showed them to be enemies of the people. We were solemnly assured that such things couldn’t happen here, as in the U.S. we respected both the privacy of the home and the right to free expression of opinion.

Well, folks, we were wrong: it is happening here. Donald Sterling, an aging troglodyte who still lives in the 1930s, has been fined $2.5 million by the NBA and banned from NBA league activities – for having been “outed” as a racist. Punished with fines, limits on his activities and public humiliation; not for having done anything to anyone but for expressing, in the privacy of his own home to a single other person, certain opinions and viewpoints.

Opinions publicly expressed, with the apparent purpose of attempting to persuade other people to a point of view or influence the actions of others, are fair game for criticism, rebuttal, debate, and (if evil or stupid enough) humiliation and condemnation. Arguably even such public speech should be free from fear of actual punishment with fines and limits on activities. Private conversations, however, surreptitiously recorded and then publicized, are definitely not such fair game.

The public distribution of private conversation recorded surreptitiously is itself contemptible. Regardless of how loathsome the opinions expressed, when we start punishing people for the opinions expressed in private, we are entering the world of the thought police.

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Letters
  • Letter: Anderson's annexed areas still lack business On July 10, 2014, at the Anderson City Council meeting, the executor of the estate was shut off from speaking, because she did not live in Adams Township, and the person from Adams Township tried to get up and speak was not allowed to. The council rushed the vote for zoning the land for business.

    July 22, 2014

  • Letter: Birth control, abortion should be woman's choice Why are Republicans so gung-ho on restricting birth control and abortion? That's easy. Republican legislators are so unpopular because they don't legislate and literally block all bills that would help the middle and lower income classes.

    July 22, 2014

  • Bannon, Tom Viewpoint: Paramount is an investment that is paying dividends About 25 years ago the citizens of Anderson made a decision that would have a long lasting impact on the community. Instead of saving the old Paramount Theatre, which had fallen into serious disrepair, it was decided that the easy and prudent decision was to get rid of the building to create additional downtown parking. Shortly after the Paramount came down, the community got rid of another abandoned structure when the old Carnegie Building, which was the former home of the Anderson Public Library, was torn down.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Letter: Wall Street should not be in politics Talk about corruption, ponzi schemes, we're looking at you, Wall Street, controlling the prices of our food, gasoline and clothing we must buy and about every company in America — while trashing President Obama, the Affordable Health Care Plan, along with every Democrat, to influence our elections, at the same time.

    July 17, 2014

  • Letter: 23 Relay for Life teams raised $40,000 As chairs of this year's American Cancer Society Relay For Life of Madison County, we would like to thank everyone for their generosity and support.

    July 17, 2014

  • Letter: Ritz under attack by state education board I attended the Indiana State Board of Education meeting in Indianapolis on Wednesday, July 9, and was genuinely disturbed by what I saw.

    July 17, 2014

  • Viewpoint: Dispatchers should not lose wages, benefits In regard to the plan to combine the city and county dispatch centers to one unit: Since this has come up it has pointed out a shameful tragedy of a group of employees in a life-saving unit of government. The city's emergency dispatch operators haven't had a pay raise in about 10 years.

    July 16, 2014

  • Viewpoint: Law trumps compassion on immigration problem As I was watching a debate on the immigration problem, the "build a fence" participant appeared to lose considerable moral ground when his liberal counterpart said, "There is a high moral ground … I would like to have an open border situation. It would be good for this country …. " She summarized by saying we ought to be a "compassionate nation."

    July 15, 2014

  • Viewpoint: Goodstock crowd continues to be considerate On July 5th Good’s Candy Shop held its sixth annual Goodstock. This event features live music, food and a car show. This year was a record turnout with 120 cars on display and over 1,200 people visiting.

    July 14, 2014

  • Letter: Dickmanns set a good example for city What a beautifully warm day and what a great day for the city of Anderson on July 3. The Anderson Town Center Park was renamed the Dickmann Town Center Park by Mayor Kevin Smith during a ceremony that was attended by an enthusiastic crowd.

    July 12, 2014

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