I’m not a big fan of Hank Williams Jr., so when ESPN fired him from Monday Night Football after comments he made about President Barack Obama, I really didn’t care. But I do have a thought or two about the freedom of speech debate that the incident has caused.
During an appearance on Fox and Friends, Williams, in referring to a golf game between the President and Speaker of the House John Boehner, a Republican Congressman from Ohio, said "That would be like Hitler playing golf with Netanyahu.” Williams went on to say that Obama and Vice President Biden are “the enemy.”
According to many reports, the country singer compared President Obama to Adolph Hitler. No, he didn’t. He made an analogy. If Williams was a Democrat, I wouldn’t be surprised right now if the far right wingers would be yelling that he compared Boehner to the Nazi leader.
I once said that the Pope making declarations about birth control would be like me giving weight loss advice. That doesn’t mean I think I’m the head of the Catholic church.
As for calling Obama and Biden the enemy, anyone who has never heard the term “political enemy” hasn’t read a newspaper.
But, be that as it may, the furor over free speech that William’s comments started, and that ESPN’s decision to fire him exacerbated, is a bit ridiculous, in my opinion. Yes, the man had the right to say whatever he wanted, and he exercised that right. Now he says that ESPN violated his First Amendment right to free speech by firing him.
No, they didn’t. The network exercised their right to replace him. That’s entirely legal. The First Amendment guarantees each of us the right of free speech. However, it doesn’t guarantee us the right to work for any company. The First Amendment doesn’t protect any of us at work.
If you agree with Hank Williams Jr. and think ESPN did him wrong, you have a right, too. You can flip to another network and boycott Monday Night Football.
Isn’t it great to live in a country where we have such freedoms?
Tags: Adolph Hitler, birth control, Catholic church, country singer, ESPN fired Hank Williams Jr, Fox and Friends, freedom of speech, Hank Williams Jr, Hitler, Monday Night Football, Nazi, Pope, President Barack Obama, Republican congressman, Speaker of the House John Boehner, Vice President Biden, weight loss advice