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Letter: Provocation does not equate to First Amendment rights

Provocation does not equate to First Amendment rights

In response to the Aug. 18 letter, “Freedom of speech applies to everyone,” the writer complained about a woman at Lovejoy Pool who attempted to impinge on his First Amendment rights. First off, the writer was somewhat colorful in his description of events, but then a good imagination can be a fun thing at times. Accuracy is another story.

I almost laughed out loud at the idea of pushing fascism. We all have protected freedoms. This is what makes our country so great. We all have many, many rights, but sometimes the laws of society dictate discretion.

When you’re at a public place, to loudly bash the president in front of a supporter is to provoke. I swim under water. I had water in my ears. This was a deliberate provocation. One of the people the writer was talking with came in the day after the inauguration and she was practically spitting, making nasty comments about Barron Trump, etc.

What about the rights of people who just want to swim? What about the rights of people who don’t care to listen to the loud opinions of others? I pay for a yearly pass and should have the right to swim in peace. People who go to a public place to loudly express their opinions are looking for a confrontation and not a First Amendment right.

Mary Ellen Ulman

Cheektowaga

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