Defend free speech every day

By January 12, 2015February 12th, 2015First Amendment

It’s ironic that the president and attorney general have suddenly become defenders of free speech in the wake of the terror attacks in Paris.

Where was the outrage two years ago?

Nobody seemed to mind when a filmmaker was denounced for a video that supposedly offended Muslims in the wake of the infamous Benghazi attack. In fact, not only did President Obama not defend free speech then, he apologized to the Muslim community for possibly offending them.

What kind of message did that send to terrorists?

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton even went on Pakistani television and called the video “reprehensible” and said the U.S. had nothing to do with it. She said nothing about free speech then.

Which now begs the question: What’s the difference between an offensive video and an offensive cartoon? Absolutely nothing. They both fall under free speech.

The world watched yesterday as more than a million people took to the streets of Paris standing up for free speech.

They lashed out at the massacre of a dozen journalists at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo and the killing of others at a kosher market. They valiantly defended free speech and stood up to the terrorists.

Good for them. But where was our president yesterday?

This we do know: Liberal progressives are too often phonies and hypocrites.

Last year, Brandeis University withdrew an honorary degree to human rights activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Why?

Were they worried she’d offend Muslims by talking about the horrors of sharia law she was personally subjected to growing up in Somalia? Ali has spoken out against girls being forced into marriages against their will, the horrific genital mutilations and other grave human rights violations many Muslim women are subjected to in countless communities throughout the world.

Did Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, Clinton or the left-wing media condemn Brandeis? Of course not.

Nor did they say a peep when Rutgers University students protested an invitation for former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to speak at the commencement ceremony last year.

What did we hear from liberal politicians? Crickets.

Enough said. Free speech is something to stand up for and defend … not selectively, but every day of the year.

Adriana Cohen is co-host of “Boston Herald Drive,” which is simulcast on WMEX 1510 AM weekdays from 7-9 a.m. Go to; follow her on Twitter @AdrianaCohen16.

Adriana Cohen

About Adriana Cohen

Adriana Cohen is a nationally syndicated columnist and tv commenator. Adriana’s weekly column appears in newspapers and media outlets nationwide including Fox News, the New York Post, and many others via the Creators Syndicate. To learn more, visit the About page.