Scary enough I actually agree with the logic here, hey here me out before you decide otherwise. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry defended the freedom of speech, religion and thought on Tuesday by telling German Students that in America “you have the right to be stupid if you want to be”, according to Reuters. When you first read it I know sounds insulting but let him explain. Kerry continued to tell the students in Berlin that, ” As a country, as a society, we live and breathe the idea of religious freedom and religious tolerance, whatever the religion, and political freedom and political tolerance, whatever the point of view.” He continued with “People have sometimes wondered about why our Supreme Court allows one group or another to march in a parade even though it’s the most provocative thing in the world and they carry signs that are an insult to one group or another.” Oh you want a reason then I suppose, well he gives that to”The reason is, that’s freedom, freedom of speech. In American you have a right to be stupid – if you want to be.” As the students laugh, he then said, “And you have a right to be disconnected to somebody else if you want to be….And we tolerate it. We somehow make it through that. Now, I think that’s a virtue. I think that’s something worth fighting for. The important thing is to have the tolerance to say, you know, you can have a different point of view.” You know John Kerry I like you more now than I have in the pass purely because he is the first person to admit that. As a country, we are forced to tolerate everything regardless of whether we agree or not with what is being done or said to us it is a part of Americana. The reasoning has played out in our favor at times and sometime to our detriment but in the end I am glad we have the freedom to express ourselves and opinions even if it is not in the majority.
Kerry made the comment in Berlin his second stop on his inaugural trip as Secretary of State which began Feb.1 and will take in on one night stops to London, Berlin, Paris, Rome, Ankara, Cairo, Riyadh, Abu Dhabi, and Doha before returning to Washington March 6. Kerry also did a little reminiscing with the student talking about his 1950s adventures in Berlin being a son of a diplomat roaming through the streets of East Berlin with his bike. He said, “I used to have great adventures. My bicycle and I were best friends. And I biked all around this city. I remember biking down Kurfuerstendamm and seeing nothing but rubble. This was in 1954 … the war was very much still on people’s minds…One day, using my diplomatic passport, I biked through the checkpoint right into the east sector and noticed very quickly how dark and unpopulated (it was) and sort of unhappy people looked…that hit this 12-year-old kid…I kind of felt a foreboding about it and I didn’t spend much time. I kind of skedaddled and got back out of there and went home and proudly announced to my parents what I had done and was promptly grounded and had my passport pulled.” Time will tell if Kerry will be able to fill the shoes of his predecessor Hilary Clinton, but for now we will have to wait and see.