Never Be Silent - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1681689

Never Be Silent

Dear Vered [“Freedom Of Speech,” Letters, February 20]: While I agree with you that every American, under the First Amendment, has the right of free speech, and that the action of the police, from what I saw on the video, was way out of line, this did not give you the right to interfere with the other paying moviegoers. After making your point, you were asked to leave — which is what you should have done. There are legal means at hand, with which you could address this problem at a later date.

I am also of the Jewish faith, and I share with you the pain our people have endured over the past 2,000 years. This does not give us the right to be silent or trivialize the suffering of others.

When the Jewish people were being tortured and murdered in Spain, during the Inquisition, so too were the indigenous natives of the Western Hemisphere. Unfortunately, the “privileged lifestyle” of Native Americans that you envision does not now nor has ever existed.

The late Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor, writer, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and recipient of both the Congressional Gold Medal and Presidential Medal of Freedom, wrote: “I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victims. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”

Stephen Ring

Hampton Bays


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