Friday, July 31, 2020

Why Are Rights to Free Speech and a Free Press Important?

I was wasting time with aimless surfing reading up on current events and improving my mind, when I happened to read a post in Instapundit:
THEY WERE CALLED ‘POLITICAL OFFICERS’ IN THE SOVIET UNION: At the Washington Post, the title is “Managing Editor for Diversity and Inclusion.” I wonder if she will have rewrite authority to ensure strict compliance with the party line in every story? Remember Ivan Putin in “Hunt for Red October”?
It suddenly occurred to me: What would my present social and political thinking be, if I hadn't happened to read that book (and quite a few others from Tom Clancy). I think the first book I read of his was Patriot Games.  I'd mostly read murder mysteries and science fiction at that point, with occasional suspense thrillers as a chaser. I suppose that's how I stumbled upon the book in the library.

Heinlein books had opened my mind to the idea of opposition to the Left being  a GOOD thing. But, it took the Clancy novels to tunnel into deeply held ideas about the decency of the Left, and root out some very old misconceptions about geo-political interactions, and how the Left had distorted them badly.

I'd read some of the arguments from the NLDs - so strong was my conditioning, the arguments barely penetrated. But, that fictional portrayal of an Irish-American guy, who stumbles across perfidy, and is driven to act against it, struck a nerve in me. I could see myself acting in similar ways, given that awareness. I started to ask myself some very inconvenient questions about the Left - it was a long process, and one that my family is still puzzled by.

So. Fiction is not merely important because of it's storyline, the entertainment value, or the literary worth. It's not just a pleasant way to pass some idle time.

Fiction can change lives. It can awaken people from their slumber, and infuse them with dreams.

I'll be returning to my writing next week with some new thinking about the meaning of what I write.


Col. B. Bunny said...

Classic opening sentence.

Roy said...

Okay, I give up. What is an "NLD"?

tkdkerry said...

What Roy said. And, as much as I enjoy Linda's writings, I have to say that frequently the acronyms leave me scratching my head. Sometime a web search helps, sometimes it doesn't.

Linda Fox said...

Sorry, I've used it before - Non-Leftist Dissident.

The Normals. The Deplorables.


Fiction can lower defenses and permit a person to consider a view "in that other world" that would never fly past a person's barriers if presented in reality.