A national chain restaurant recently made the news when the CEO admitted that the company funded anti gay rights organizations. When the backlash came, Conservative pundits quickly asserted that it was a matter of "free speech" and those who were upset were being hypocritical.
Of course, the obvious complaint wasn't that this organization or the CEO responsible for it had no right to say whatever they wish, it was that what they are saying is bigotry. And it most certainly is bigotry. It is exclusionary and seeks to retard the rights of others, and that is bigotry. The KKK holds rallies all the time as a means of exercising their right to free speech.
Furthermore, this organization is funding political organizations that do not have the same rights as private citizens - organizations that seek to politicize these issues and change them systematically. That pretty much blurs the hell out of any line regarding "free speech."
To illustrate, if I say, "Being in a room full of black/gay/Jewish/etc. people makes me uncomfortable," that's my right. It's ugly and kind of narrow-minded, but if it's what I feel and want to express to others, so be it. If I fund organizations that seek to systematically make it so that those people are no longer allowed to be in the same room with me as a matter of law, then that's something else entirely.
© C Harris Lynn, 2012