“Don’t let the terrorists win.”
We said that a lot after 9/11, and have for the last 16 years. As air travel became absurdly cumbersome, as civil liberties were eroded, as people were arbitrarily blacklisted or detained without room for appeal – we said the terrorists were winning, causing us to undermine the underpinnings of our own society, to crack down on the freedoms that are central to the principles of the United States.
Now, I see friends calling for cracking down on freedom of speech, for restricting the First Amendment, taking away its protections from speech they (and I) consider loathsome. I even see friends advocating for physical violence against people because of their speech.
That, my friends, is letting the terrorists win.
I loathe the ideology of white supremacy. But to let fear or anger at it undermine our notions of civil liberties or civil society… that would be letting the terrorists win.
We’re bigger than that. We’re stronger than that. Don’t let the terrorists win.