Irony as a literary device is alive and well as hundreds of publishing professionals signed an open letter urging the nixing of Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett’s book deal with Penguin Random House.
Proclaiming to “care deeply about freedom of speech,” the over 550 signatories blasted the prominent publisher over its $2 million dollar contract with the jurist.
Signing letters calling for censorship of viewpoints you don’t agree with should disqualify you from a career in publishing. https://t.co/mEYrP9eui9
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) October 29, 2022
Barrett has an agreement with Sentinel, a Penguin Random House imprint that specializes in conservative works, to write concerning how judges must avoid basing their legal decisions on personal feelings.
Personal feelings, however, are the exact basis for the petitioners to demand that a sitting Supreme Court justice be censored. They feel as well as state that the justice “appropriated the rhetoric of even-handedness and received a $2 million advance to do so.
Barrett’s crime was to agree with the high court majority in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health and send the abortion decision back to the states.
The open letter acknowledges that censorship is harm “done to a democracy” but claims a greater harm from an “assault on inalienable rights.” Such as freedom of speech?
The literary professionals accused Barrett of “inflicting her own religious and moral agenda” on the Dobbs decision and thus the U.S. population. Not content to stop there, the writers claim that publishing her book violates “international human rights.”
It gets better.
The signatories brazenly assert that “we are not calling for censorship.” They further believe that the upcoming book is in violation of the publisher’s code of conduct and “funded the destruction of human rights with obscene profits.”
There is much to be said about a literary group that only finds obscenity in profits. That group, for the record, reportedly includes employees of Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Barnes and Noble, and an assortment of other writers, publishers, and even media members.
A prominent radio host once explained that “free speech is meant to protect unpopular speech.” He added that “popular speech, by definition, needs no protection.”
It wasn’t very long ago when the left could be counted on to go to bat for free speech no matter the source or message. But that was when liberals had a virtual monopoly on media outlets and platforms.
Now it has reached a point where the traditional defenders of outrageous speech brandish pitchforks over a sitting Supreme Court justice having a book deal with a major publisher. To claim that is not censorship is a blatant lie that collapses under even a moment’s scrutiny.