When commenting on the state of the SOPA/PIPA bills recently, lead-SOPA sponsor Lamar Smith, the representative from Texas, indicated those speaking out against these acts were a “vocal minority” and just because they were loud doesn’t mean they are worth paying attention to.
In other words, pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, only focus on the good SOPA will bring. In this case, however, the man behind the curtain isn’t operating the machinery that is SOPA. Instead, the man, or, in this case, entities behind the curtain are those who oppose the oft-discussed piracy prevention acts. Not only does Smith want you to ignore them, he’s going to do the same. Smith’s ridiculous position was impressively captured by Deviant Art member, ChadRocco, and it does a fantastic job of capturing Smith’s hear, see, and speak no opposition approach:
Click for larger image
In Chad’s description for his creation, he sites Smith’s “vocal minority” quote directly, which says:
“It’s a vocal minority. Because they’re strident doesn’t mean they’re either legitimate or large in number. One, they need to read the language. Show me the language. There’s nothing they can point to that does what they say it does do. I think their fears are unfounded.”
Granted, Smith’s quote was given in the context of responding to outspoken-against-SOPA sites like Reddit, but the point remains. If Smith views Reddit as a vocal minority, given the site’s reach, how does he view large SOPA opponents like Google and Yahoo? Does he reduce these huge Internet entities as a vocal minority as well?
What about the government officials who are against these acts? Should their lack of support be discounted as well? If Smith and the entertainment industry cronies who are lining his pockets in support of the anti piracy bills get their way, the “vocal minority” may well be ignored and downplayed as meaningless.