Corporations are people after all?

The WSJ uses the current IN debate to tweak liberals on their ideas about free speech:

Well—hold on. Liberals have instructed us time and again that corporations aren’t people or persons, that companies cannot express speech and have no right to engage in politics. But now Tim Cook is celebrated for delivering a moral lecture to Hoosiers on behalf of Apple because liberals agree with him. Perhaps Mr. Cook and other CEOs who’ve criticized Indiana should reconsider their offices in China and other places around the world that have contempt for human rights, or in some cases open hostility to gays and lesbians.

They also add in a couple of great counterfactuals:

To the extent anyone is offering a good-faith criticism, it seems to apply to the narrow exceptions of sole proprietors in the wedding industry, such as florists, bakers, photographers and singers. Our view is that their speech and conduct is protected by the First Amendment, but do liberals really now believe that the very few vendors who object to working at same-sex weddings should be forced to participate in what they believe to be a moral wrong?

For that matter, should a Native American printer be legally compelled to make posters with an Indian mascot that he finds offensive, or an environmentalist contractor to work a shift at a coal-fired power plant? Fining or otherwise coercing any small number of private citizens—who aren’t doing anyone real harm but entertain politically unacceptable thoughts—is thuggish stuff

The movement for state recognition of same-sex marriages has succeeded in changing public opinion by appealing to people’s sympathy and values like love and acceptance. They will lose this good will if they adopt the illiberal standard that “equality” must mean stomping on religious liberty.

And earlier in the same piece:

The episode is a discredit to U.S. civil society, which we used to think was strong and friendly enough to tolerate all people of whatever religious or sexual persuasion.

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One Response to Corporations are people after all?

  1. Paul Marks says:

    If a private bodies corporate, such as Churches, have no rights in law then they can be robbed or destroyed without punishment – this has been an objective of the left for centuries (see the French Revolution – which was based on principles that are fundamentally opposed to those of the American Revolution).

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