IF YOU’RE LIKE ME, you are fed up with all the political literature, billboards and advertisements.
If you’re like me, you don’t even read the campaign material that arrives in your mailbox.
If you’re like me, you don’t even want to answer the phone or door any more to listen to another pollster or campaign volunteer or candidate.
But then along comes a political statement like this, posted along Interstate 94 about 15 miles east of Alexandria (between mile markers 117 and 118 near the West Union exit):
I don’t care what your political persuasion or whether you vote red or blue, support Barack Obama or Mitt Romney. You just have to admire the creativity and hard work of whomever planted this limo in the ground along a busy Minnesota interstate to drive home a political point.
Spotting this political billboard of sorts this past weekend truly caused me to pause and consider how very fortunate I am to live in a free country like the United States of America.
Here we are free to express our opinions, to let our voices be heard, to speak out, to tell others what we think, to vote. And, yes, I pretty much duplicated myself with all of those phrases.
Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech.
© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling
About this blog & commenting here August 10, 2017
Tags: blog, blogging, comments, freedom of speech, media, Minnesota Prairie Roots, thoughts
That’s my post, labeled “Barn Memories,” published on November 30, 2013, on Freshly Pressed, a feature of WordPress, my blogging platform. My work has been highlighted on FreshlyPressed thrice. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo.
I’M NOT A PARTICULARLY opinionated person, at least not publicly. I mostly steer from conflict, discord and disagreement. I’m more the mediator type, the “let’s work things out” and treat others with kindness and respect. That includes the topics I generally cover here on this blog. My blog.
In recent weeks, several particularly mean-spirited comments filtered into this site. They were inflammatory and accusatory and just plain awful, with some directed at me personally. I chose not to publish them. I refuse to allow this blog, my blog, to become a platform for hatred, false accusations and unproven allegations.
Yes, I’m aware some may term this as censorship or a denial of free speech. I have worked as a newspaper reporter and value freedom of the press. Suppression of the media rankles me. In recent months the media have been under intense attack unlike anything I recall. This scares me. Freedom of the press is essential in a democracy. I hope the general public understands that.
We may not like what the media report. But we also need to stop blaming the messengers for the news they deliver. They are just doing their jobs.
That brings me back to Minnesota Prairie Roots. This blog is not mainstream media. No one pays me to write here. I earn some income from photos that people/businesses/organizations find here and buy from me and also from writing jobs tracing to this blog. But I am not on anyone’s payroll nor do I have an agenda other than to share my images and words with you. Writing and photography are my passions.
If you choose to submit hateful, accusatory and inflammatory comments, I won’t publish them. This is my blog. It’s as simple as that. I won’t bend my values, morals and beliefs.
To the many faithful readers and commenters who write with respect, thank you. I appreciate you and value your thoughts.
© Copyright 2017 Audrey Kletscher Helbling