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As I See It

Sometimes speaking your mind comes with a price

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Few liberties are as widely debated as our right to free speech. We see it on college campuses in Wisconsin, where they have tried to protect the rights of some to speak, while threatening sanctions for those who disrupt their speech. We see it on message boards and social media posts, where people often hide behind anonymity to hurl hateful comments. We also saw it last week with a social media post by the La Crosse County Administrator. Steve O’Malley went online to post hateful comments following the death of Rush Limbaugh. O’Malley suggested Rush spend eternity in hell, adding “good riddance.” O’Malley is defending his comments, or at least his right to make them, saying his comments were made not as the county administrator, but as an individual citizen, and that his views do not reflect the views of county government. That may be true, but it is not a good look. O’Malley told WIZM News “I guess I don’t have the right to my own opinion.” That is not true. He has every right to his opinion, as do all of us. But sharing those comments in a public form can come with a price. O’Malley is being condemned by his critics for his comments, and some suggest some sort of ethics investigation be conducted. O’Malley has a right to his opinions, but sometimes we should remember that valuable but often forgotten lesson that if we don’t have anything nice to say about someone, we shouldn’t say anything at all.

Scott Robert Shaw serves as WIZM Program Director and News Director, and delivers the morning news on WKTY, Z-93 and 95.7 The Rock. Scott has been at Mid-West Family La Crosse since 1989, and authors Wisconsin's only daily radio editorial, "As I See It" heard on WIZM each weekday morning and afternoon.

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1 Comment

  1. Tom Yoshizumi

    March 5, 2021 at 9:19 pm

    I have no problem with Steve O’Malley opinion and if Rush was still alive I’m sure he wouldn’t also seeing Rush believe in the constitution with all his heart (1st amendment.)I listen to Rush many a hour over my life and never got the impression of anything O’Malley stated in his opinion. What I heard was a man with very strong beliefs and was trying to make America better for EVERYONE and was trying to make sure that we don’t forget our mistakes from our past so we won’t make them again in the future. The constitution is the foundation of our country. It has allowed us to progress to the great nation that we are today and will allow us to improve into the future if left the way it is. It takes time to achieve perfection and we still have a long way to go. Steve identified how terrible Rush was and what Rush deserved for his beliefs (Hell ). The only thing Steve accomplishment in his opinion was , he is what he accused Rush of being. My biggest concern about what happened is that, Lacrosse county has put limits on what the ethics committee is allowed to pursue. that all by it’s self is unethical . Ethics has no boundaries!! Ethnics is the issue of common sense, right and wrong, morals and laws. It’s about being a good person! What I want to know is why the members of the ethics committee have allowed the county to put limits on them. I believe one member is a man of the cloth and another actually teaches ethics at a local university and Writes a column for a local newspaper on ethics. I’m pretty sure the county has limits on the committee to cover or to protect a lot of the unethical crap they are doing. I know people in positions of power abuse their power routinely that would easily fall under unethical behavior IF NOT FOR LIMITS. I think the county board better rewrite the responsibilities of the ethics committee to make them right in all aspects of ethics . Maybe they should start by putting people on the committee that won’t compromise ethics in any way.! And have the backbone to do whats right no matter what. FOR THE GOOD OF ALL. That’s what Rush would want, All of the above is my opinion!!!s

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