Precinct 333

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Another Free Speech Case From Missouri?

Just this week, the Supreme Court ruled that the white trash who make up the KKK cannot be barred from a program picking up trash on Missouri highways. Now the St. Louis area transit agency, Metro, has removed ads from trains because they were placed by a white supremacist group, the National Alliance.

Metro plans to remove a white separatist group's advertisements from MetroLink trains today, calling the group's philosophy offensive.

The St. Louis unit of the National Alliance paid $1,500 for 50 ads on MetroLink trains. The ads read, "The Future Belongs to Us," and provide the group's Web site and phone number.

The National Alliance has been described by watch groups as the nation's largest neo-Nazi group and has a relatively large and active membership in St. Louis.

Now hold on. A government agency is going to pick and choose which groups are allowed to advertise on trains based upon whether or not folks find the philosophy of the organization “offensive”? Does this mean no more ads from Planned Parenthood? From the NAACP? From gay rights groups? From the Democrat Party? Who, exactly, is going to get to decide which groups can be offended and which ones cannot? Will vegetarians have to put up with ads for restaurants that serve meat? Will thinking people continue to be offended by ads for the local Air America radio outlet? And will pacifists be required to tolerate recruiting posters from the military? Why is it this ad, which on its face is innocuous, that must be removed?


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