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The Attorney General of Texas Calls for Calm

The Attorney General of Texas Calls for Calm

Elon Musk ‘wants free speech to reign on the internet’: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton

Elon Musk ‘wants free speech to reign on the internet’: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton

This story first appeared in The Sun. Read it here.

AUSTIN — Amid the chaos of the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements, Ken Paxton, attorney general of Texas, issued a passionate call for calm on Wednesday, saying that people have a First Amendment right to support causes they “don’t like.”

“We need to recognize and respect that our society is becoming more than just ‘capitalism for the rich,’” Paxton said at a news conference he hosted. “People of good faith and goodwill should have the ability to take a stand on issues they don’t like, and to express the thoughts of all Texans, even if others disagree.”

Musk, the chief executive of electric carmaker Tesla, responded to Paxton’s comments Tuesday on Twitter by calling the attorney general “a great man.” The company had earlier faced some backlash over plans to introduce self-driving cars. Paxton’s remarks drew a rebuke from the state’s largest teachers’ union, the American Federation of Teachers, which said Paxton had “gone down a path to politicize law enforcement.”

In a letter addressed to Paxton, the union pointed out that his remarks came on the same day that the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear an as-yet-unidentified case involving a Florida man who lost his job after being fired for tweeting a vulgar term to his supervisor.

The nation’s highest court will hear arguments on April 4 in a case that could have major implications for free speech on the internet.

“If you thought that this was a fight over speech, this is nothing more than a fight over the power of the state,” said Paxton, a Republican former sheriff who is seeking the Republican nomination for governor in 2018.

He added that he could not imagine how the state would define free speech and that there was nothing sinister about seeking to prevent the removal of offensive material on the internet.

“When

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