John Kerry: Americans have 'right to be stupid' (VIDEO)


US Secretary of State John Kerry holds a conversation with a group of invited young people as part of his Youth Connect series of discussions on Feb. 26, 2013, in Berlin in his first trip abroad since taking over for Hillary Clinton.


Adam Berry

In his first trip abroad as secretary of state, John Kerry told a group of German students today that Americans have a "right to be stupid."

It's not as bad as it sounds.

Kerry made the remarks at a school in Berlin while defending America's freedom of speech and religion, Reuters reported.

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"People have sometimes wondered about why our Supreme Court allows one group or another to march in a parade even though it's the most provocative thing in the world and they carry signs that are an insult to one group or another," he said.

"The reason is, that's freedom, freedom of speech. In America, you have a right to be stupid if you want to be," he added to laughter. "And you have a right to be disconnected to somebody else if you want to be.

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"And we tolerate it. We somehow make it through that. Now, I think that's a virtue. I think that's something worth fighting for," Kerry said.

The remark comes one day after the former Massachusetts senator made up the name of a country -- morphing Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan into “Kyrzakhstan" -- while speaking in London, the Washington Times reported.

Later today, the former senator delighted a packed crowd at an Internt cafe with a few sentences of passable German, and told them stories of his boyhood in Berlin in 1954, Politico reported.