The freedom to disagree goes both way

Recently a letter to the editor accused The Alpena News of playing cheap politics, allowing divisive language and underhandedly inciting anger. As usual this kind of blathering came about when someone with a view different than this letter writer wrote an opinion to the News.

Really now, isn’t writing a letter to the editor about free speech? In a properly functioning grade school we are taught that one of the rights, maybe even a duty, of citizens in America is to speak their opinion in the free and open press. Shame on this writer for thinking the Alpena News should censor what is being sent to them as an expression of someone’s civic duty.

The writer is one of hundreds who are blindly writing in support of Obamacare but is guilty of being correct in saying that “individuals have no idea how the law will affect their lives.” Even though Obamacare has been sanctioned, sort of, by the Supreme Court of America, most citizens have not even a foggy idea of how the law’s 20,000 pages of confusing mandates and regulations will influence their lives.

The writer is also offended by our continuing use of the term Obamacare when in reality that is just how the majority in America know the law. Americans, positively and negatively, attribute Obamacare to the man who signed the law.

The writer suggests that people of all political persuasions read the Alpena News. Correct. But then goes on to say that by presenting a position commonly held by others is somehow biased. The News Press is not giving their opinion but giving space for all of us to speak our mind.

A common and effective method of defending a questionable position is to deny others freedom to defend theirs.

Freedom is the right to disagree.

Bob Lamb