[FoRK] Re: clarifying / exploring Aaron's point

jbone at place.org jbone at place.org
Fri Feb 13 18:36:16 PST 2004


On Feb 13, 2004, at 3:29 PM, Aaron Swartz wrote:

>> ...and that by implication either:
>
> What I actually believe is:
>
> "To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation 
> of POLITICAL opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sometimes 
> not sinful and tyrannical."

I disagree.  I believe that Jefferson believed --- AND STATED 
EXPLICITLY, PER THE QUOTE --- that forcing someone to pay for the 
propagation of opinions opposed to their own is "sinful and 
tyrannical."

It takes a certain degree of sophistication --- in the literal and 
derogatory sense of the word --- to claim otherwise, GIVEN THE ACTUAL 
STATEMENT.

> I suspect Jefferson would think both opinions are equally OK.

Fine, and I agree.  This is not the issue.  The issue is in whether 
Jefferson believed that forcing someone to pay for the propagation of 
opinions opposed to their own was appropriate.  You claim that 
Jefferson was making a more subtle point.  I claim that his statement, 
by itself, stands on its own and is contrary to what you are claiming.

jb



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