The right to shriek back

Power Line reader Steven Zak casts a skeptical eye on the complaints of censorship emanating from left-wing pundits and entertainers: “‘Censorship’ whining.” The left-wing attitude toward dissenting views was of course best captured by the frequently quoted line from the Ring Lardner short story: “‘Shut up,’ he explained.”
Linda Ronstadt is the entertainer who has most recently articulated the views captured in Lardner’s line. While she herself appears not to understand much about the basics of free speech, her singing has long given testimony to the American right to shriek. Even Nelson Riddle couldn’t coax her to modulate her voice when she attempted to record a respectable version of the great American songbook. Instead she butchered it.


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