What good is freedom of speech if you can't speak your mind without being vilified by everyone?
de Tocquerville even warned that freedom of speech is useless unless the speaker is allowed to voice their view without being persecuted for it.
He even closed "Democracy in America" with: "Tyranny in democratic republics does not proceed in the same way, however. It ignores the body and goes straight for the soul. The master no longer says: You will think as I do or die. He says: You are free not to think as I do. You may keep your life, your property, and everything else. But from this day forth you shall be as a stranger among us. You will retain your civic privileges, but they will be of no use to you. For if you seek the votes of your fellow citizens, they will withhold them, and if you seek only their esteem, they will feign to refuse even that. You will remain among men, but you will forfeit your rights to humanity. When you approach your fellow creatures, they will shun you as one who is impure. And even those who believe in your innocence will abandon you, lest they, too, be shunned in turn. Go in peace, I will not take your life, but the life I leave you with is worse than death.”
Freedom of speech is useless without the tolerance to allow a person's views to be heard, without persecution. Unless you can voice your view without persecution, "You will retain your civic privileges, but they will be of no use to you" is literally true - you can voice your view, but you will suffer for it, what good is it?
It's perversion of the spirit of the first amendment to say "You have freedom of speech, but not freedom from its consequence."
I may not like what I consider ignorant drek spouted by Neo-Nazis, KKK, certain Westboro Baptist Church members, etc. I may think they are personally the worst filth humanity has to offer. But I am willing to fight to give them the right to spew their bile and to protect them from those who seek to silence them by whatever means necessary. Anything less amounts to tyranny by the majority.
And that's precisely what is being done here - Eich voiced a view - years ago, and now that what was then the minority is now the majority, he is being punished for it.
The very cornerstone of freedom of speech is being willing to protect those whose views we hate, and the ability to exercise their right without fear of backlash or persecution.
I'm not saying Eich is left starving... far from it. The point is that nobody should feel a threat to their person, livelihood, or property because their views -- however unpopular, ignorant, or wrong -- are expressed.