“…The Battlefield of Ideas”

“There will be times when you shouldn’t compromise your core values, your integrity, and you will have the responsibility to speak up in the face of injustice. But listen. Engage. If the other side has a point, learn from them. If they’re wrong, rebut them. Teach them. Beat them on the battlefield of ideas.”
President Barack Obama,
Commencement Address at Howard University
May 7, 2016

Consider: What do you think President Obama meant when he said “the battlefield of ideas”? Where did this idea come from and what does it have to do with free speech?

Key Concept: The philosophical foundations of America’s Constitution and Bill of Rights, including the protection of freedom of speech, were influenced by thinkers working long before America’s founding.