Contemporary threats to free speech

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retrofuturist
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Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:35 pm

Greetings,

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.

Feel free to get the ball rolling in the meantime...

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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by mikenz66 » Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:42 pm

Nice topic.

In both my country (a few years ago) and in the US (recently) there have been moves to stop scientists from speaking out on issues such as climate change. It's a real issue when technical experts cannot comment on technical matters.

:anjali:
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by binocular » Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:51 pm

When has there even been free speech, anywhere?

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Feb 02, 2017 9:57 pm

We certainly don't have it on Dhamma Wheel.

If we did I have something to say.

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:02 pm

Greetings Mr. Man,
Mr Man wrote:We certainly don't have it on Dhamma Wheel.

If we did I have something to say.
You have the right to free speech here within the parameters of the Terms of Service, just like everyone else...

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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:05 pm

So free speech is restricted on Dhamma Wheel.

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:08 pm

Greetings,

Extracts from... The Night Berkeley Betrayed The Free Speech Movement
On Wednesday night, fires blazed across the University of California, Berkeley campus, the site of the student Free Speech Movement of the 1960s, as protesters violently derailed the finale of MILO’s college lecture tour. In 1964, Berkeley student Mario Savio addressed his peers in a speech about the importance of the free and open discussion on college campuses. In his address, Savio argued that the university must return to it’s intended function where students are invited to explore all ideas – both radical and mainstream – freely and without fear of social or academic repercussion.

Tonight, fires blazed across the same parts of the University of California, Berkeley campus from which Savio once addressed his fellow students. Attendees were attacked and left bleeding by mask-wearing thugs. Windows were smashed. A girl was pepper-sprayed. By responding to MILO’s call for “no restrictions on the content of speech” as Savio did so many years ago with riots and violence, the Berkeley socialists of 2017 have betrayed the efforts of those that came before them.

Tonight, Fox 10 Phoenix anchor John Hook, during a live broadcast of the Berkeley riots, argued that “MILO made his point without saying a word.”

Now more than ever, we need to listen to Savio’s impassioned plea for a return to a university that values a diversity of perspectives, keeping in mind that, tonight, the students who follow in the tradition of socialistic activism at UC Berkeley burned the ground on which he once spoke in the demand that the university censor speech that they found objectionable.

Tonight, Berkeley betrayed the free speech movement for which the institution is famous. The university has much work to do if it is to protect the legacy of Mario Savio and reclaim the values espoused by the Free Speech Movement of some 50 years ago.

For the rioters, engaging with MILO’s call for open discussion and intellectual freedom on college campuses wouldn’t be a bad start.
Extracts from... Donald Trump lashes out at Berkeley university after protest against Breitbart's Milo Yiannopoulos.
President Trump wrote:"If U.C. Berkeley does not allow free speech and practices violence on innocent people with a different point of view - NO FEDERAL FUNDS?"
While Trump framed his early morning tweet around free speech and opposition to violent demonstrations, his critics are likely to interpret the message as indirect support for Yiannopoulos, a deeply polarising figure who portrays himself as a champion of open expression but whose detractors view as a hate-monger.
...

Some schools have cancelled or indefinitely postponed his appearances because they often generate such intense responses.

That leads some to argue that his speech is being censored. Others counter that universities aren't required to pay security and other expenses when students invite speakers.

The Daily Californian, the student newspaper at Berkeley reported that protesters were chanting, "'No Milo, no Trump, no fascist USA,'" setting off fireworks, throwing rocks and bricks and pounding on windows. They reported that university police later used rubber bullets and tear gas in an attempt to calm the crowd.

"Amid violence, destruction of property and out of concern for public safety, the University of California Police Department determined that it was necessary to remove Milo Yiannopoulos from the campus and to cancel tonight's scheduled 8 pm performance," the university announced Wednesday night.
GOP state Sen. Ted Gaines wrote:"Universities should be the most open, the most welcoming harbor of all ideas, left or right. But they have turned into rigid ideological prisons where stepping outside the latest progressive liberal path is considered a thought crime."
Milo Yiannopoulos wrote:“American universities should be on notice. The president is watching. The days you could silence conservative and libertarian voices on campus and still expect to collect their tax money are coming to an end.”
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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:12 pm

Greetings Mr. Man,
Mr Man wrote:So free speech is restricted on Dhamma Wheel.
Only to the extent that one would compare "freedom" to "liberty"...
Wikipedia wrote:Liberty is distinctly differentiated from freedom in that freedom is primarily, if not exclusively, the ability to do as one wills and what one has the power to do; whereas liberty concerns the absence of arbitrary restraints and takes into account the rights of all involved. As such, the exercise of liberty is subject to capability and limited by the rights of others
Thus, the capability is dependent upon the author, and the 'rights of others' are defined by the Terms of Service.

Thus, as I said, "the right to free speech ... within the parameters of the Terms of Service"

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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by mikenz66 » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:19 pm

I think it's silly that the protests prevented Milo from talking but in my view not particularly a threat to free speech since Milo and his supporters get plenty of exposure.

:zzz:
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:20 pm

Hi Paul
So in plain English "the right to free speech ... within the parameters of the Terms of Service" = Not free speech. Speech is restricted.
Last edited by Mr Man on Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mr Man » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:23 pm

mikenz66 wrote: since Milo and his supporters get plenty of exposure.
In my opinion he gets too much exposure. Not sure why he keeps popping up on "A Buddhist discussion forum on the Dhamma of the Theravada".

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:24 pm

Greetings Mike,
mikenz66 wrote:I think it's silly that the protests prevented Milo from talking but in my view not particularly a threat to free speech since Milo and his supporters get plenty of exposure.
Well he wasn't permitted to speak, and his audience was denied the right to assembly, so those are pretty core threats to the foundations of freedom of speech.

I take your point about exposure, but that's less a matter of "free speech" than it is a matter of "tactics" on the part of those involved, and whether or not those tactics are conducive to their desired outcomes. Many are arguing that the actions of the protesters served to affirm Milo's position on these matters far better than he could ever have done through his own presentation, had it been allowed to proceed.

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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by mikenz66 » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:29 pm

I'm sure Milo knows that. He appears to be a consummate showman.

:popcorn:
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:32 pm

Greetings Mr Man,
Mr Man wrote:So in plain English "the right to free speech ... within the parameters of the Terms of Service" = Not free speech. Speech is restricted.
Correct, it's not totally free. It's constrained by the laws of the community, as it is in all countries. In the U.S. for example:
Freedom of speech includes the right:

Not to speak (specifically, the right not to salute the flag).
West Virginia Board of Education v. Barnette, 319 U.S. 624 (1943).

Of students to wear black armbands to school to protest a war (“Students do not shed their constitutional rights at the schoolhouse gate.”).
Tinker v. Des Moines, 393 U.S. 503 (1969).

To use certain offensive words and phrases to convey political messages.
Cohen v. California, 403 U.S. 15 (1971).

To contribute money (under certain circumstances) to political campaigns.
Buckley v. Valeo, 424 U.S. 1 (1976).

To advertise commercial products and professional services (with some restrictions).
Virginia Board of Pharmacy v. Virginia Consumer Council, 425 U.S. 748 (1976); Bates v. State Bar of Arizona, 433 U.S. 350 (1977).

To engage in symbolic speech, (e.g., burning the flag in protest).
Texas v. Johnson, 491 U.S. 397 (1989); United States v. Eichman, 496 U.S. 310 (1990).

Freedom of speech does not include the right:

To incite actions that would harm others (e.g., “[S]hout[ing] ‘fire’ in a crowded theater.”).
Schenck v. United States, 249 U.S. 47 (1919).

To make or distribute obscene materials.
Roth v. United States, 354 U.S. 476 (1957).

To burn draft cards as an anti-war protest.
United States v. O’Brien, 391 U.S. 367 (1968).

To permit students to print articles in a school newspaper over the objections of the school administration.
Hazelwood School District v. Kuhlmeier, 484 U.S. 260 (1988).

Of students to make an obscene speech at a school-sponsored event.
Bethel School District #43 v. Fraser, 478 U.S. 675 (1986).

Of students to advocate illegal drug use at a school-sponsored event.
Morse v. Frederick, __ U.S. __ (2007).
(Source)

This being a Buddhist discussion forum, it's also interesting to note that the Buddha laid down the requirement that the Sangha adhere to the laws of the land.

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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by retrofuturist » Thu Feb 02, 2017 10:49 pm

Greetings Mike,
mikenz66 wrote:In both my country (a few years ago) and in the US (recently) there have been moves to stop scientists from speaking out on issues such as climate change. It's a real issue when technical experts cannot comment on technical matters.
Do you have a link or two that would make for further reading?

:reading:

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)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by ancientbuddhism » Fri Feb 03, 2017 12:22 am

The École Biblique and it’s suppression of translation and publication of the Qumran Scrolls. This was censorship both for religious and political purposes. Not surprising considering École Biblique’s pedigree as an organ of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (1965), formally known as the Holy Office (1592). But prior to that it was called the Holy Inquisition.

But this isn't as interesting to Millennials as punks committing felony assault and arson at UC Berkeley.
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by mikenz66 » Fri Feb 03, 2017 2:39 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Mike,
mikenz66 wrote:In both my country (a few years ago) and in the US (recently) there have been moves to stop scientists from speaking out on issues such as climate change. It's a real issue when technical experts cannot comment on technical matters.
Do you have a link or two that would make for further reading?

:reading:

Metta,
Paul. :)
I'm sure you can find plenty more US reports:
https://www.theguardian.com/environment ... ing-for-it

Much more worrying than self professed provocateur Milo being disrupted by some trouble makers. He's hardly been gagged...

Here's the NZ climate scientist case I was referring to:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Salinger

The head of our National Radiation Lab also fell foul of politicians by pointing out that the French Nuclear tests in the Pacific were not actually a health threat to NZ (a separate issue, of course, from whether blowing up atolls in the Pacific was a sensible thing to do!). He subsequently wrote a book about radiation issues:
http://www.nationwidebooks.co.nz/produc ... 1877270581

:anjali:
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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mkoll » Fri Feb 03, 2017 2:50 am

mikenz66 wrote:Much more worrying than self professed provocateur Milo being disrupted by some trouble makers. He's hardly been gagged...
I'd bet he got more publicity from yesterday alone than he had altogether up to that point. Definitely a win in his book.
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by mikenz66 » Fri Feb 03, 2017 3:41 am

Maybe he hired the "Ninjas"...

Image

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Re: Contemporary threats to free speech

Post by Mkoll » Fri Feb 03, 2017 3:48 am

I don't think he would even need to hire them. Trump's more rabid supporters would do it spontaneously with glee and for free.

But even if the rioters were anti-Trump and not just anarchists looking to start trouble, they do Trump a favor. From the article I just linked in the POTUS thread:
Civil unrest will not be a problem for the Trump presidency. It will be a resource. Trump will likely want not to repress it, but to publicize it—and the conservative entertainment-outrage complex will eagerly assist him. Immigration protesters marching with Mexican flags; Black Lives Matter demonstrators bearing antipolice slogans—these are the images of the opposition that Trump will wish his supporters to see. The more offensively the protesters behave, the more pleased Trump will be.

Calculated outrage is an old political trick, but nobody in the history of American politics has deployed it as aggressively, as repeatedly, or with such success as Donald Trump. If there is harsh law enforcement by the Trump administration, it will benefit the president not to the extent that it quashes unrest, but to the extent that it enflames more of it, ratifying the apocalyptic vision that haunted his speech at the convention.
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa
Namo tassa bhagavato arahato samma sambuddhassa

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