November 5, 2008

Freedom Of Speech

I just wanted to address a statement made recently by country superstar Carrie Underwood...

Let me start off by saying that I love her and her music, and I have been a fan of hers sinceAmerican Idol and will continue to be one for years to come. But, something that she said really upset me, because it's a belief she shares with others, and I think it's discriminatory.

So, here's what she said [about the 2008 Presidential race]: "There is someone I do support, but I don't support publicly. I lose all respect for celebrities when they back a candidate.

It's saying that the American public isn't smart enough to make their own decisions. I would never want anybody to vote for anything or anybody just because I told them to."

Now, I don't care that she doesn't want to publicly support a candidate, and I don't care who she supported, but to suggest that someone, celebrity or not, shouldn't be able to discus any one of the two people running for the Presidency is a ridiculous ideal, one that threatens to set us back in the progress that we've made as Americans.

People fought and died so that we, as private citizens and public figures, could have the freedom to speak out, so that we could have the right to influence decisions with our voices and contribute to the editing of the American story. People traveled from distant lands, struggled for equal rights and reached for the ballots so that our opinions could make a difference.

And, if celebrities shouldn't say who they support for President, than neither should our family members, friends, neighbors, elected officials or the campaign advisors, organizers and volunteers for either party. Because we all should be held to the same standards as Americans.

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