West Hollywood government cannot censor citizens but it should certainly censor itself from showing a blatantly anti-Semitic film.
The First Amendment prevents American governments from censoring citizens, no matter how vile the ideas those citizens may advance. There are some limitations that I won’t discuss here, but (thankfully) free speech in America is real. Having said that, government should and can censor itself when it comes to promote utterly vile ideas.
Today, I received an email (reprinted below) urging West Hollywood to re-think its decision to use its money and power to promote an actively anti-Semitic and anti-Israel movie. There is no reason whatsoever for the West Hollywood government to screen something so deeply dishonest and offensive. Even as hard Left a government as West Hollywood should have some sense of shame and decency, not to mention a modicum of political discretion.
This is especially true given that West Hollywood is driven by its deep commitment to LGBT rights. In that regard, it would do well to consider the way LGBT people are treated in Israel versus the way LGBT people are treated in the Palestinian territories. In Israel, they have full civil rights. Under Palestinian rule, they are treated the way people on the LGBT spectrum are treated throughout the Muslim world: Death. Violent, horrible death. [Read more…]