Contemporary threats to free speech

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:24 am

Greetings chownah,
chownah wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:21 am
If I am wrong then bring an excerpt of the speech showing pai's mention of a partisan political issue.
I don't care for your games, chownah. How about you back off and stop sealioning? I just told you the partisan aspect is of no interest to me.

Bye.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by chownah » Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:38 am

This post is not in reply to retrofuturist.

In pai's speech he said, "Everything nowadays is political. Everything. … This view that politics-is-all is often made worse by social media,". This is exactly the issue I have raised about how breitbart politicizes issues in a partisan way...even issues which are not of a partisan nature. Breitbart really is more of a social media site than a news site. Breitbart is a quintessential example of "This view that politics-is-all is often made worse by social media".

chownah

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by L.N. » Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:54 am

retrofuturist wrote:
Sun Nov 26, 2017 9:21 pm
Like the author, I am pleased that hysterical moral accusations are losing their power as a means by which to suppress the speech of those with whom someone disagrees. The potency of such shrieking accusations and their associated epithets has suffered in recent years due to how transparent it has become to the average citizen that they are being rampantly abused in cynical attempts to gain social, economic or political advantage.
Wow. This is the first time I have opened or looked at this Topic, and now I have a better sense of why there may be so much resistance to various Topics regarding Right Speech.

There must be some middle ground where people can speak with one another in a mutually respectful way without assuming that someone is either (i) hysterically PC, or (ii) needlessly insensitive.
retrofuturist wrote:
Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:35 pm
The purpose of this topic is to discuss the prevalence of trends, actions, ideologies and policies which are a threat to free speech in the 21st century.

The threats in scope for this discussion are inclusive of threats that arise from all sides of politics, from all ideologies, and from all groups and institutions.

I will share some examples soon, but I wanted to keep specific examples out of the "original post" in order to avoid confusion about the parameters of this topic.
I haven't read through this entire Topic, so apologies if this is rehashing, but one significant threat to free speech is when the President of the United States calls for NFL players to be fired for taking a knee during the national anthem, which they do as a form of protesting racial inequality, and when Trump also falsely accuses them of protesting the flag (nobody is protesting the flag). When the political establishment begins going after people for expressive conduct, it is a threat to freedom of speech.

There are other examples of modern threats to free speech which originate when those who are accustomed to being entitled feel discomfort when asked to treat others with dignity and respect.
retrofuturist wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 3:49 am
It just so happens that in 2017, the majority of political and religious censorship (and associated threats of punishment) are done in support of left-wing ideals.
Nonsense.
So-called "hate speech" violations are a good contemporary example of this.
"Hate speech" means fighting words which constitute a racial or ethnic epithet, without social value, which would provoke a reasonable member of the group about whom the words are spoken. Even if the law protects such speech, it is still not the kind of speech we should commend or promote. It is not a "hysterical moral accusation" to call such speech what it is: hate speech.
... My concern is authoritarian censorship in general, regardless of whether it's left-wing or right-wing, thus it's not a "partisan" concern.
What is wrong with self-regulation and self-control? What is wrong with someone speaking up to say, those words are offensive?
Therefore, you getting in a twist over "partisan" "weaponization" is you arguing with yourself once more. As such, I'm not interested in your urge to quarrel.
Wow. Getting very personal about a Member who happens to disagree with you. So if someone disagrees with you, it reflects a state of mind inclined toward "quarreling"? If someone disagrees with you, it is "getting in a twist"? But if you disagree with someone else, no problem, and no further response is invited? Hope this comment doesn't cause you to become quarrelsome and get into a twist.
For what it's worth, a link was provided to Breitbart primarily because Breitbart will actually report on these matters, whereas the majority of mainstream media organisations are advocates of censorship in support of left-wing and globalist ideals (and protecting themselves from "conspiracy theories" about them being sexual predators etc.), and are therefore far less motivated to voluntarily bring attention to such matters.
Utter nonsense.
They would much rather manipulate than draw attention to the manipulate.
Who is "they"? What kind of nonsense are you trying to put forth regarding traditional news sources?

From the ridiculous blog entry linked above:
This attitude includes, but is not at all limited to, the imbecilic concept of microaggressions, according to which a person may be “offensive” and guilty of “aggression” even when conscientiously trying to be polite ....
That sounds mighty familiar to me, after witnessing people who conscientiously try to be polite only to be vilified by right-wing conspiracy theorists.

I am sure you will love and agree with the following twisted viewpoints:“DANGEROUSLY VAGUE” – NEW US LAW BLURS THE LINE BETWEEN HATE SPEECH AND HATE CRIME.

Unfortunate when hate speech is given priority over common civility.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am

L.N. wrote: "Hate speech" means fighting words which constitute a racial or ethnic epithet, without social value, which would provoke a reasonable member of the group about whom the words are spoken. Even if the law protects such speech, it is still not the kind of speech we should commend or promote. It is not a "hysterical moral accusation" to call such speech what it is: hate speech.
"Hate Speech" is a nonsense concept. We (and most places) already have laws against incitement to violence, which make no reference to the content of the speech, except insofar as it is judged to be incitement to violence. The designation of 'hate speech' implies, since it makes reference to content, that there is an absolute scale of 'moral' qualities, and that the beliefs behind the 'hate speech' are lower on the scale than the beliefs of the designator. This is directly contrary to the principles of free speech, tolerance for the ideals of others, and equality under the law. To perform the reductio, it is as though we were to designate certain colours of car 'hateful', and make our judgements on that basis, rather than mechanical safety.

Further, what is 'hateful', and what is not, is in the 'eye of the beholder', so to speak, and not the one who says the words. This is not to absolve the speaker of the responsibility of thinking through the impact of their words, but merely to point out that if we leave the designation of morally unacceptable speech only to the listener, there is an asymmetry in their influence over any ultimate judgement. In effect, if we say that it is the listener who defines what is 'hateful' or offensive, we remove the means of distinguishing formally between statements ('this speech spoken by Nazis is incitement to violence', 'that speech spoken by Black Panthers is not incitement to violence, merely nasty'), leaving only our trust of the listener's motivation. The legal system bequeathed to us makes distinctions on the basis of formal individual equality under the law, not the particular and contingent preferences of those involved.


So, as regards both 'hate speakers' and sensitive listeners:
L.N. wrote: What is wrong with self-regulation and self-control?

After all, there's a world of difference between hearing an unpleasant statement, and a punch in the mouth.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:05 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am
"Hate Speech" is a nonsense concept. We (and most places) already have laws against incitement to violence, which make no reference to the content of the speech, except insofar as it is judged to be incitement to violence.
Hi Pseudobabble
We also have "hate speech" laws.

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:26 am

Mr Man wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:05 am
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am
"Hate Speech" is a nonsense concept. We (and most places) already have laws against incitement to violence, which make no reference to the content of the speech, except insofar as it is judged to be incitement to violence.
Hi Pseudobabble
We also have "hate speech" laws.
Yes, and they are a chimerical farce, since they vitiate the framework position of formal individual equality under the law. My point is that if you have laws against incitement to violence, the only thing 'hate speech laws' are protecting is people's feelings, which, frankly, are ultimately the responsibility of their bearers.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:29 am

Greetings Mr. Man,
Mr Man wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:05 am

We also have "hate speech" laws.
Thank you for bringing to our attention one of the contemporary threats to freedom of speech.

Will Germany's new law kill free speech online?

Metta,
Paul. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Sam Vara » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:08 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:26 am
Mr Man wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:05 am
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am
"Hate Speech" is a nonsense concept. We (and most places) already have laws against incitement to violence, which make no reference to the content of the speech, except insofar as it is judged to be incitement to violence.
Hi Pseudobabble
We also have "hate speech" laws.
Yes, and they are a chimerical farce, since they vitiate the framework position of formal individual equality under the law. My point is that if you have laws against incitement to violence, the only thing 'hate speech laws' are protecting is people's feelings, which, frankly, are ultimately the responsibility of their bearers.
Yes, I entirely agree. It is also worth noting that police forces concentrating on eradicating emotions takes resources away from real crimes in the real world.
https://www.turningpoint.news/online-ha ... e-britain/

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:46 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:26 am
My point is that if you have laws against incitement to violence, the only thing 'hate speech laws' are protecting is people's feelings, which, frankly, are ultimately the responsibility of their bearers.
Hi Pseudobabble
What do you make of this?

'Traveling Butts' instagrammers arrested in Thailand over nude photo at historic temple
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/11 ... ic-temple/

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:52 am

Sam Vara wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:08 am

It is also worth noting that police forces concentrating on eradicating emotions takes resources away from real crimes in the real world.
Hi Sam
If people are being arrested/charged/convicted I guess it means it is a real crime (according to the law) and real world? Is the internet not part of the real world?

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Sam Vara » Thu Nov 30, 2017 10:21 am

Mr Man wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:52 am
Sam Vara wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:08 am

It is also worth noting that police forces concentrating on eradicating emotions takes resources away from real crimes in the real world.
Hi Sam
If people are being arrested/charged/convicted I guess it means it is a real crime (according to the law) and real world? Is the internet not part of the real world?
According to the law.


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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by binocular » Thu Nov 30, 2017 10:25 am

Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:26 am
Yes, and they are a chimerical farce, since they vitiate the framework position of formal individual equality under the law. My point is that if you have laws against incitement to violence, the only thing 'hate speech laws' are protecting is people's feelings, which, frankly, are ultimately the responsibility of their bearers.
I think 'hate speech laws' are protecting only the feelings and interests of people in positions of power, at the expense of the feelings and interests of those with less power.

I think 'hate speech laws' are a relatively new, fancy way of those in positions of power to exert this power and to secure their positions of power.

I think 'hate speech laws' are a way of saying, "I cast the first stone, therefore, I am innocent."

And it takes hate speech to uphold hate speech laws ...

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Nov 30, 2017 11:49 am

Mr Man wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 9:46 am
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:26 am
My point is that if you have laws against incitement to violence, the only thing 'hate speech laws' are protecting is people's feelings, which, frankly, are ultimately the responsibility of their bearers.
Hi Pseudobabble
What do you make of this?

'Traveling Butts' instagrammers arrested in Thailand over nude photo at historic temple
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/11 ... ic-temple/

Just off the cuff.. this isn't what I would call a 'crime' despite what the Thai laws might say. I'd say the Thai's have every right to be pissed off at this sort of thing, just as we would if random foreigners were taking nude selfies at the Cenotaph. From the perspective of the whole hate speech thing - I understand why you counterpose this; while I don't think these people should be charged with a crime (again, whatever the law might actually be), they certainly deserve whatever social approbation and ostracisation the Thais heap on them.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Nov 30, 2017 11:52 am

binocular wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 10:25 am
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 8:26 am
Yes, and they are a chimerical farce, since they vitiate the framework position of formal individual equality under the law. My point is that if you have laws against incitement to violence, the only thing 'hate speech laws' are protecting is people's feelings, which, frankly, are ultimately the responsibility of their bearers.
I think 'hate speech laws' are protecting only the feelings and interests of people in positions of power, at the expense of the feelings and interests of those with less power.

I think 'hate speech laws' are a relatively new, fancy way of those in positions of power to exert this power and to secure their positions of power.

I think 'hate speech laws' are a way of saying, "I cast the first stone, therefore, I am innocent."

And it takes hate speech to uphold hate speech laws ...
Not sure I entirely agree, but I'm with the gist. I rather think the people in power use such laws to pander to the wishes of the electorate, which are filtered through a media which, by construction, prefers to report sensationally, resulting in 'moral panics' over things which are not terribly problematic.

I'm certain however, that the narrative sustained by this dynamic is perpetuated by the power elite, because it gives them a 'moral tool' with which to justify the increase in pointless laws.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by chownah » Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:18 pm

Let's look at societies where hate speech was not only allowed but encouraged.....where should we look? Germany? Cambodia? IS? Alabama? Mississippi? Arkansas?

Giving free rein to hate speech.....what could go wrong?
Sticks and stones may break my bones but hate speech never harmed anyone?.....I guess....don't know for sure though......
chownah

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:25 pm

chownah wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:18 pm

Sticks and stones may break my bones but hate speech never harmed anyone?
Precisely. Hate speech hurt your feelings, but it was the stick which broke your bones. Difference is, what is hateful to one, is not to another, whereas the stick always hurts.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Sam Vara » Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:40 pm

Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:25 pm
chownah wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:18 pm

Sticks and stones may break my bones but hate speech never harmed anyone?
Precisely. Hate speech hurt your feelings, but it was the stick which broke your bones. Difference is, what is hateful to one, is not to another, whereas the stick always hurts.
This leads to another important difference. In the case of the stick being used, the evidence is empirical: if there is no bruising or abrasion, then it hasn't been used to inflict harm. In the case of hate speech, the evidence is usually someone's claim that they felt hated.

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:53 pm

Sam Vara wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:40 pm
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:25 pm
chownah wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 12:18 pm

Sticks and stones may break my bones but hate speech never harmed anyone?
Precisely. Hate speech hurt your feelings, but it was the stick which broke your bones. Difference is, what is hateful to one, is not to another, whereas the stick always hurts.
This leads to another important difference. In the case of the stick being used, the evidence is empirical: if there is no bruising or abrasion, then it hasn't been used to inflict harm. In the case of hate speech, the evidence is usually someone's claim that they felt hated.
Exactly. If we believe the accused is innocent until proven guilty, we need evidence to make the decision that they are guilty. That one person might be offended by statement X, and another not offended, means that the emotional state of offence, or the lack of it, does not constitute evidence, as we cannot rely on it as a standard in all cases.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by L.N. » Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:05 pm

Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am
"Hate Speech" is a nonsense concept.
I respectfully disagree. Rather, the term "hate speech" is a useful description of speech without social value which is directed at disparaging a particular ethnic group or nationality or class of persons (the disabled, trans people, etc.). "Hate speech" is a legitimate term used to describe speech that has a caustic potential to fuel hatred and incite further hatred. The conservative United States Supreme Court Justice Scalia has recognized that the term "hate speech" is a useful descriptor:
Therefore, a ban on all fighting words or on a subset of the fighting words category would restrict only the social evil of hate speech, without creating the danger of driving viewpoints from the marketplace.
Source. Scalia and others recognized that "hate speech," while bereft of social value, is protected speech and not unlawful in the United States by virtue of being hate speech. Even so, hate speech is a "social evil" and, in my opinion, should not be encouraged. If we can respect the right of neo-Nazis to march in furtherance of promoting white supremacy, then we also should be able to respect the rights of other individuals to protest such hate speech.
The designation of 'hate speech' implies, since it makes reference to content, that there is an absolute scale of 'moral' qualities, and that the beliefs behind the 'hate speech' are lower on the scale than the beliefs of the designator.
I respectfully disagree. The term "hate speech" recognizes that there are accepted social norms, including acceptance of others regardless of race, color, or creed, and that speech which broadly disparages blacks, Muslims, homosexuals, the disabled, etc. should be recognized for what it is. It is speech that tends to fuel hatred.
This is directly contrary to the principles of free speech, tolerance for the ideals of others, and equality under the law.
I respectfully disagree. As noted above, "hate speech" is protected free speech in the United States and in other places. To the extent different nations or territories choose to implement laws prohibiting hate speech, it may or may not be appropriate.
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am
Regardless, freedom of speech can be abused. Hate speech is an abuse of freedom of speech.
L.N. wrote: What is wrong with self-regulation and self-control?
After all, there's a world of difference between hearing an unpleasant statement, and a punch in the mouth.
Not if the hate speech riles up a group of people so much that they feel justified in physically attacking others. Also, the internal physical pain accompanied by hearing hateful words directed at you (e.g., calling someone the "n" word) can be just as unpleasant or even more so than the physical pain of a punch in the mouth.

In my opinion, we should not under-estimate the power of words to hurt others.
Sire patitthitā Buddhā
Dhammo ca tava locane
Sangho patitthitō tuiham
uresabba gunākaro


愿众佛坐在我的头顶, 佛法在我的眼中, 僧伽,功德的根源, 端坐在我的肩上。

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Pseudobabble » Thu Nov 30, 2017 6:23 pm

L.N. wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 4:05 pm
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am
"Hate Speech" is a nonsense concept.
I respectfully disagree. Rather, the term "hate speech" is a useful description of speech without social value which is directed at disparaging a particular ethnic group or nationality or class of persons (the disabled, trans people, etc.). "Hate speech" is a legitimate term used to describe speech that has a caustic potential to fuel hatred and incite further hatred. The conservative United States Supreme Court Justice Scalia has recognized that the term "hate speech" is a useful descriptor:
Therefore, a ban on all fighting words or on a subset of the fighting words category would restrict only the social evil of hate speech, without creating the danger of driving viewpoints from the marketplace.
Source. Scalia and others recognized that "hate speech," while bereft of social value, is protected speech and not unlawful in the United States by virtue of being hate speech. Even so, hate speech is a "social evil" and, in my opinion, should not be encouraged. If we can respect the right of neo-Nazis to march in furtherance of promoting white supremacy, then we also should be able to respect the rights of other individuals to protest such hate speech.
The designation of 'hate speech' implies, since it makes reference to content, that there is an absolute scale of 'moral' qualities, and that the beliefs behind the 'hate speech' are lower on the scale than the beliefs of the designator.
I respectfully disagree. The term "hate speech" recognizes that there are accepted social norms, including acceptance of others regardless of race, color, or creed, and that speech which broadly disparages blacks, Muslims, homosexuals, the disabled, etc. should be recognized for what it is. It is speech that tends to fuel hatred.
This is directly contrary to the principles of free speech, tolerance for the ideals of others, and equality under the law.
I respectfully disagree. As noted above, "hate speech" is protected free speech in the United States and in other places. To the extent different nations or territories choose to implement laws prohibiting hate speech, it may or may not be appropriate.
Pseudobabble wrote:
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:21 am
Regardless, freedom of speech can be abused. Hate speech is an abuse of freedom of speech.
L.N. wrote: What is wrong with self-regulation and self-control?
After all, there's a world of difference between hearing an unpleasant statement, and a punch in the mouth.
Not if the hate speech riles up a group of people so much that they feel justified in physically attacking others. Also, the internal physical pain accompanied by hearing hateful words directed at you (e.g., calling someone the "n" word) can be just as unpleasant or even more so than the physical pain of a punch in the mouth.

In my opinion, we should not under-estimate the power of words to hurt others.

To be honest, I think we are largely on the same page. I fully agree with your statements about hate speech regarded as a social phenomenon. A 'social evil' is exactly what it is.

However, I think we disagree on a legal level. I see no benefit to be derived from legislating against hate speech, for three reasons: one, it achieves nothing material beyond legislation against incitement to violence, two, it shifts the domain of evidence from the material to the emotional, which, as I stated above, is not an adequate standard, and three (related to two), it encourages the notion that emotional or subjective experience is of the same substance as intersubjectively accessible material evidence.

The last is by far the most dangerous of the three. We in the West are lucky not to have to experience many of the hardships that others do in other parts of the world - we are coddled. It strikes me as repugnant to use the same word 'oppression' (for example) to refer to, on the one hand, governmentally sanctioned extrajudicial torture and execution (under Khmer Rouge for example), and on the other, being referred to by a pronoun not of one's choice. These are just not the same kind of thing, and to obscure the difference in order to gain incrementally better treatment within one's developed society is what I would call immoral use of language ('hate speech' if you like).
L.N. wrote: Not if the hate speech riles up a group of people so much that they feel justified in physically attacking others.
This is basically how I define incitement to violence. Hate speech, to me, means nasty, disparaging, prejudiced remarks.

L.N. wrote: Also, the internal physical pain accompanied by hearing hateful words directed at you (e.g., calling someone the "n" word) can be just as unpleasant or even more so than the physical pain of a punch in the mouth.
Yes, painful, but fundamentally different from physical injury. When one is punched, one has no choice but to suffer the pain and damage. But when someone says something hurtful, in that case the pain is a result of our interpretation.

No one is responsible for the mental and emotional events of another. That is the essence of karma, surely?
L.N. wrote: In my opinion, we should not under-estimate the power of words to hurt others.
I quite agree, but Right Speech cannot be enforced by law.
"Does Master Gotama have any position at all?"

"A 'position,' Vaccha, is something that a Tathagata has done away with. What a Tathagata sees is this: 'Such is form, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is feeling, such its origination, such its disappearance; such is perception...such are fabrications...such is consciousness, such its origination, such its disappearance.'" - Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta


'Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return.' - Genesis 3:19

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