Free speech is important, vital, even, and should be protected, yet does not serve as a buffer or shield from criticism. Just because you are free to say something doesn’t mean there won’t be consequences for the words you speak or write. The pen is mightier than the sword. We can say so much, so much more powerfully with ink and lines than we can in other ways, which is why it’s important to remember than when we choose pens as our weapons, as creators, we are more dangerous and more powerful than we realize. While doodles and letters put together in sentences and satire don’t physically harm anyone, we are making a difference (however small, however subtle) and we are either moving society forward or protecting the status quo. We are dismantling society, or perpetuating oppression, or maybe we do some of both because we’re human. We are communicating on a level that surpasses the conscious and meets people in their souls. When we are cruel, and racist, homophobic, or misogynistic, that still matters, it still affects people, it still hurts.
We should never be afraid to create, to say what we feel needs to be said. But we need to know, we need to be aware, that our words, our drawings, our art is powerful. That’s why so many people try to destroy it, so many people try to hide from it, and if we really want to, we can make the world a better, more equal, represented, and understanding place with it.
The pen is mightier than the sword, wield it wisely.