While people are clamoring about “economic rights,” the concept of political
rights is vanishing. It is forgotten that the right of free speech means the
freedom to advocate one’s views and to bear the possible consequences,
including disagreement with others, opposition, unpopularity and lack of
support. The political function of “the right of free speech” is to protect
dissenters and unpopular minorities from forcible suppression—not to guarantee
them the support, advantages and rewards of a popularity they have not gained.
The Bill of Rights reads: “Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the
freedom of speech, or of the press . . . .” It does not demand that private
citizens provide a microphone for the man who advocates their destruction, or a
passkey for the burglar who seeks to rob them, or a knife for the murderer who
wants to cut their throats.