America, despite all of her current woes, still remains the greatest country in the world. One of our ultimate freedoms is the right to openly express ourselves without fear of retribution. Journalists, reporters and news broadcasters are all guaranteed protection under the Constitution.

Free speech isn't as free as some believe. With it comes an expectation of great responsibility and respect for the rights of others and a strong moral code of behavior. Within our own families we often blurt out whatever we want without regard to how the other party may feel upon hearing it. We can be rude, hurtful, mean-spirited, and hateful. "It's a free country. I can say whatever I want and if they can't deal with it, oh well! Too bad! That's not my problem." This arrogant attitude reeks of selfishness and disrespect. The cost of "free speech" can be wounded self-esteem, fractured relationships, alienation, damaged reputations, and in cases such as the Journal, putting others in harm's way.

While I fully support the First Amendment and encourage open and honest expression of one's feelings, I also believe we have a responsibility to take great care in the way we exercise our right. My rights do not supersede the rights of others. So before speaking, consider the following questions:

Is what I'm about to say or do kind?
Does it emanate from a place of love for all parties?
Is it based on truth rather than speculation, lies, jealousies or my own insecurities?
Does it care for the well-being of all those concerned?
Does it take into consideration the feelings and needs of the other?
Is it absolutely the best choice I can make at this time?
Will it achieve long-lasting and far-reaching benefits for all those concerned?*

In all areas of life we have options as to how we handle ourselves. Let us vow to always make choices that are life-affirming and beneficial to all of humanity.

*The Great Truth @

Author's Bio: 

Janet Pfeiffer, international inspirational speaker and award-winning author has appeared on CNN, Lifetime, ABC News, The 700 Club, NBC News, Fox News, The Harvest Show, Celebration, TruTV and many others. She’s been a guest on over 100 top radio shows, is a contributor to Ebru Today TV and hosts her own radio show, Anger 911, on
Janet's spoken at the United Nations, Notre Dame University, was a keynote speaker for the YWCA National Week Without Violence Campaign, and is a past board member for the World Addiction Foundation.
She's a former columnist for the Daily Record and contributing writer to Woman’s World Magazine, Living Solo, Prime Woman Magazine, and N.J. Family. Her name has appeared in print more than 100 million times, including The Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, Alaska Business Monthly and more than 50 other publications.
A consultant to corporations including AT&T, U.S. Army, U.S. Postal Service, and Hoffman-LaRoche, Janet is N.J. State certified in domestic violence, an instructor at a battered women's shelter, and founder of The Antidote to Anger Group. She specializes in healing anger and conflict and creating inner peace and writes a weekly blog and bi-monthly newsletter.
Janet has authored 8 books, including the highly acclaimed The Secret Side of Anger (endorsed by NY Times bestselling author, Dr. Bernie Siegel).
Read what Marci Shimoff, New York Times bestselling author, says of Janet's latest book, The Great Truth; Shattering Life's Most Insidious Lies That Sabotage Your Happiness Along With the Revelation of Life's Sole Purpose:
"Janet dispels the lies and misconceptions many people have lived by and outlines a practical path to an extraordinary life beyond suffering. Written with honesty, clarity, sincerity, and humor, this book serves as a wonderful guide for anyone seeking a more enriching and fulfilling life.”
Dr. Bernie Siegel says, "All books of wisdom are meant to be read more than once. The Great Truth is one such book."