#writelife · Life

“Beyond the First Amendment”

“Beyond the First Amendment”

Check out my guest blog post and the Let’s All Be Free project. Great people with great ideas! Follow them on Twitter @LetsAllBeFree.

I was asked to blog about what freedom means to me, as a writer, a woman, an American, or any other way I chose to identify myself. Inevitably, it always comes back to the writing. 

“It is no surprise that now freedom, to me, comes in the form of words, specifically in writing–an outgrowth of the act of reading that I learned at age of three. I still tend to communicate better on paper, but I’ve found my voice and I’m not afraid to use it. I think this is a catharsis for anyone who endeavors to write–the moment when you overcome the anxiety of sharing your work and dare to actually identify yourself as a writer.”

4 thoughts on ““Beyond the First Amendment”

  1. Thanks for this, Jaclyn. More interesting stuff.

    Of course, freedom means different things to different people. I’m a trombonist and, you might say, I have a right to practise. But let’s suppose my neighbour works nights and needs to sleep during the day. He has his rights too. Directly or indirectly, when we exercise our rights we always encroach on the rights of another. Some even believe that freedom is an illusion, at the end of the day.

    The other point is: just how free is the USA? I could preach communism from a soapbox in Hyde Park London if I wanted to, which I don’t, and no one would blink an eye. The last time I visited the US I had to sign a form stating that neither I nor any member of my family had ever BEEN a commie! I was shocked. I’m sure you’ve read about the witch hunts in Hollywood. And am I correct in saying US citizens aren’t allowed to visit Cuba? We Brits go there all the time. Super place, super people and fabulous musicians.

    In conclusion, let me assure you I admire the US so much that one of my friends once jokingly suggested it was about time I moved there but my life as not only a musician but a theorist, too, has trained me to stand back and take a broad view.

    Regards and thanks again, John Morton.

    1. Thank you so much for this thoughtful comment. I really appreciate your perspective and your time! You make excellent points and opened my eyes again to those shady areas us patriots like to conveniently avoid. And I commend you for that. Americans relish in their freedom–I certainly do. But you are so right to point to the fact that one’s freedom often encroaches on another’s and therefore has the ability to undermine the very essence of what it means for all to be free. In many ways we simply can’t be–not entirely, not in the absolute way I always want to idealize freedom. Thanks, again!

      1. I’m so glad you didn’t take my comments as an attack. I know that mentioning communism in the US is a tricky one. I suppose what we’re really saying is that doing it right isn’t always convenient and that begs the question ‘convenient for whom?’. Keep in touch!

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