I have often regretted my speech, never my silence
It's well known that when one is involved in a court case, all communication with the other side in the case should be by one's attorney. One never knows what one might say that can get one in trouble. I was once a plaintiff in a court case and my attorney told me that if I ever get a call from the defendant to tell them "All discussions must be with my lawyer". She told me how once one of her plaintiff's in a personal injury case received a call from her former employer who asked how she was doing and she said "fine". He then bought that up in court as an argument that she really wasn't injured.
My attorney went on to tell me that the general advice of saying the minimum is good advice for life in general. She explained that, that way you avoid misinterpretation of things you say.
Among friends though I think that one should be able to relax and not constantly worry about how what one says might be misinterpreted.
There are times when we must speak up for example it is important to speak up against injustice. Silence can be damaging. An example of this was Hillary Clinton's silence after hearing Suha Arafat's accusations against Israel. With Hillary Clinton at her side, Suha Arafat made the false and disgraceful claim that Israel was poisoning Palestinian women and children with toxic gases. Instead of reacting with outrage, Hillary Clinton sat by silently. When Arafat was finished, Hillary gave her a hug and a kiss. Hillary may have felt she was playing it safe by being silent, but her silence (as well as her hugging Suha after that speech) has caused an uproar in New York (11/23/99) which as a politician she didn't need. It's important to get involved and speak out against injustice from a moral point of view. The example of Hillary Clinton shows that there are times when it may even be politically expedient to do so.
c o p y r i g h t ( c ) 1 9 9 9 -2004 Karl Ericson Enterprises. All rights reserved
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