L’affaire Jemele Hill and libertarian first principles

Is Donald Trump surrounded by white supremacists? Is it disrespectful and downright rude to sit down during the national anthem? Although we think Jemele Hill and Colin Kaepernick (pictured below) are wrong, as good libertarians (and good Bayesians!), aren’t we morally obligated to defend their moral right to express themselves? (After all, they might be right!) But that said, by the same logic, don’t NFL team owners and whoever calls the shots at ESPN also have the reciprocal right not to hire (or fire) people they disagree with? If so, whose right to speech should prevail in these cases? More fundamentally, what is the “optimal amount” of free speech?

Image result for we are with you Jemele Hill   Image result for we are with you Jemele Hill

About F. E. Guerra-Pujol

When I’m not blogging, I am a business law professor at the University of Central Florida.
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4 Responses to L’affaire Jemele Hill and libertarian first principles

  1. CHC says:

    Both the NFL and Colin Kaepernick (who I happen to agree with) are expressing commerical speech — at least they are doing so in a commercial venue. Is commercial speech less protected than private speech? No. But it has commercial consequences, should those who disagree with their views take their money elsewhere. No one denies the NFL or Kaepernick the right to say what they want / show what they want on TV / hire the people they want, as long as it is lawful. But they know and recognize that their “free” speech — being commercial — has financial consequences. I don’t see a paradox here. I can say a lot of unpopular things on my blog and lose readers. That doesn’t imply a loss of “free speech”. It only does so if I were to bow to social/financial pressure and say something different for the sake of being popular again — which gets us back to “commerical speech”.

  2. CHC says:

    My fingers apparently like to reverse the final c and i in “commercial” as if the word were a cousin of comical.

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