- ‘Welcome to the edge of freedom’: Biden’s boots touch down in DMZ
- Obama: Hole U.S. ‘digging out of’ requires billions more in unemployment benefits
- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Voltaire
Those who believe in American exceptionalism don't reject foreigners. They recognize what's unique about our history: a distinctive confluence of culture, government and economy, and an ethos of personal responsibility that tamed the economy's wild horses and tempered the potentially anarchic tendencies of free people. These, not government action, gave rise to the wealthiest and most powerful nation on earth.
A Facebook group created Monday for Tuffy Gessling, the rodeo clown who was banned for life from the Missouri State Fair for wearing a President Obama mask during Saturday's bull-riding event, has already gained more than 30,000 supporters who think he has been treated unfairly.
"Although I disagree with every word you say, I shall defend to the death your right to say it." This stirring proclamation by Voltaire could have been said by Thomas Jefferson -- or any of his associates -- since free speech, a mainstay of 18th-century Enlightenment, fueled the American Revolution and is incorporated in our Constitution. In the first half of the previous century, a common phrase was "It's a free country; I can say what I want." That phrase is not so common today, but free speech is still an American ideal, or so most of us think.
Voltaire once visited playwright William Congreve, who had written four great Restoration comedies before he was 30 and then retired. Congreve said that in retirement he wanted to be thought of only as a gentleman, not a playwright. Voltaire replied, "But if you are only a gentleman, why should I want to visit you?"
Reactions to the death of author and pundit Christopher Hitchens:
The venerable Robert Massie has written another fascinating book about one of his favorite subjects: Czarist Russia. The new narrative by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "Nicholas and Alexandra," "Peter The Great" and "The Romanovs" reveals, in exhaustive detail, the lavish and byzantine lives of the imperial family along with the machinations, intrigues, malicious gossip and rumors that flourished in the shadows of their court.
When it comes to the right of one to practice and worship in his own way, there is no disputing that the United States is more tolerant than most countries. But should it be tolerant of religions that advocate violence and malice toward other human beings?