July 14, 2020, 08:35:26 PM

Author Topic: Free speech (or not) - and some tea  (Read 3005 times)

Offline Bender

Now instead of calling people Nazi's or fascists often when they are not let them speak and destroy their ideas in a logical fashion using critical thought instead of name calling.

Trying to talk logic to anyone who has supremacy views is bound to be futile. It should be perfectly fine with calling them out.

I'd be perfectly happy for society to ban hate speech. If anyone thinks they do not have "freedom" because they cannot hate speak, I have no sympathy or consideration for them.
"I shall hunt your firstborn children and laugh with glee as I tell them of your death in terrible detail, with many unpleasant adjectives!" - M-Bot

"Who needs science when you have a dragon?" - Neil DeGrasse Tyson in Sharknado 6

Offline Magnus Hedén

  • High Lord of commas and Grand Master of semicolons
  • Ambient Mage
  • ****
  • Posts: 400
  • Total likes: 324
  • Gender: Male
  • My name is Magnus. I make stuff up.
    • View Profile
    • My Patreon
Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #31 on: March 02, 2020, 05:58:25 PM »

Inciting violence = definitely a crime
General bigotry = disgusting but should never be illegal

People should have the right to say whatever they want so long as they are not DIRECTLY inciting violence. You can't say someone can't say a specific thing about some group because in a democracy we have the right to decide as a nation what is and is not acceptable, and for that you need to hear all the sides, even if we disagree with them.

When discussing freedom, it's always a matter of balancing some people's freedom against that of others. The problem is that allowing hate speech infringes on other people's right not to be hated for existing. And dealing with hate speech directed at you or a group you belong to on a daily basis is harmful, psychologically in the short term, and physically in the long term, all without anyone directly inciting violence.

In this case, I'm squarely in the corner of people who are often the target of hate to be allowed to live their lives without having to deal with people who don't consider them human beings.

Karl Popper famously stated that a tolerant nation must, paradoxically, not tolerate intolerance. Hate isn't an opinion that can be discussed like it's an economic model.
You can find stories on my Patreon
I'm also on Twitter and the Book of Faces

Offline Peat

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #32 on: March 03, 2020, 01:29:06 AM »
Few add on thoughts

- Cupiscent mentioned the possibility some things added to the law. I'd add its possible there's some things that should be deleted from it too. I can't think of anything off hand but there's certainly been cases throughout history. The law is not a perfect arbiter where all things illegal should be so.

- That said, democracies can and do use the law to say "We're not discussing this any more, mention it and go to court". Which means there is no requirement that democracies debate everything all the time, as it is within their power to say "no more".

- Is there any evidence that public debate and logic actually defeats ideologies, or harms them more than allowing them a platform does them good? Not that suppressing them always works either - au contraire, sometimes it helps them - but that doesn't mean the alternatives work either. The only evidence I've heard of, a long time ago, was that mostly personal emotional connections seem to be the thing that works. Certainly people seem more driven by their emotions and logic.
This is the blog of Peat - http://peatlong.blogspot.co.uk/

Offline Matthew

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #33 on: March 03, 2020, 02:56:19 AM »
The problem is that allowing hate speech infringes on other people's right not to be hated for existing. And dealing with hate speech directed at you or a group you belong to on a daily basis is harmful, psychologically in the short term, and physically in the long term, all without anyone directly inciting violence.
First off, that isn't a right, people are allowed to hate anyone for any reason. You may dislike me for my opinions on complete freedoms and that's an entirely justified viewpoint. The choice for the victims is whether they fight back or turn the other cheek, either way it's their responsibility to defend themselves. The exception to that is physical violence as the law prohibits any form of personal justice. BUT since you seem to be okay with people opposing hate speech in an unofficial capacity, hate speech itself should also be on the table. We should insult and ostracise the perpetrators, but their words are no less valid to them than yours are to you.

Karl Popper famously stated that a tolerant nation must, paradoxically, not tolerate intolerance. Hate isn't an opinion that can be discussed like it's an economic model.
You can't only grant freedoms to people you agree with. Where does it end? There is no end of regimes that ban  discussion of anything that challenges their beliefs, which is exactly what you're approving of. Ethics vary wildly throughout the world and history, stop trying to impose your personal morality on others by silencing them.

Offline Yora

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #34 on: March 03, 2020, 08:29:42 AM »
First off, that isn't a right, people are allowed to hate anyone for any reason. You may dislike me for my opinions on complete freedoms and that's an entirely justified viewpoint. The choice for the victims is whether they fight back or turn the other cheek, either way it's their responsibility to defend themselves.
That sounds absolutely horrible and misanthropic. Might makes right, when you get intentionally hurt it's your own fault.

Fortunately, human society doesn't work that way unless it completely breaks down.
We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on a big tower of other dwarves.

Beneath the Leaves of Kaendor

Offline Eclipse

  • Warning: this topic has not been posted in for at least 120 days.
  • Dragonrider
  • ***
  • Posts: 4819
  • Total likes: 2378
  • Gender: Male
    • View Profile
Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #35 on: March 03, 2020, 09:45:32 AM »
Where’s the tea gone 🍵 from this topic  ;D
According to some,* heroic deaths are admirable things

* Generally those who don't have to do it.Politicians and writers spring to mind

Jonathan Stroud:Ptolmy's Gate

Offline ScarletBea

  • Welcome party and bringer of Cake. 2nd-in-Command of the Writing Contest
  • Powers That Be
  • Big Wee Hag
  • *
  • Posts: 12174
  • Total likes: 6914
  • Gender: Female
  • Geeky Reading Introvert
    • View Profile
    • LibraryThing profile
Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #36 on: March 03, 2020, 09:53:55 AM »
Where’s the tea gone 🍵 from this topic  ;D
I started drinking T2's "jaffalicious", which is basically chocolate ;D
At home in the Fantasy Faction forum!

I'm "She Who Reigns Over Us All In Crimson Cheer", according to Peat!

Offline cupiscent

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #37 on: March 03, 2020, 09:57:05 AM »
Well said, @Yora

Sure, people are allowed to hate whoever or whatever they like. But they are not allowed to act on that hate and attack, and my feeling--and understanding--is that a verbal attack (hate speech) is still an attack. It can cause trauma, like a physical attack. Attacks and trauma within a society are antithetical to the smooth operation of that society--or they should be, in any society I want to be a part of.

Meanwhile, "jaffalicious" sounds delightful, I am off to T2 tomorrow to get some :D

Offline Peat

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #38 on: March 03, 2020, 10:08:01 AM »

First off, that isn't a right, people are allowed to hate anyone for any reason. You may dislike me for my opinions on complete freedoms and that's an entirely justified viewpoint. The choice for the victims is whether they fight back or turn the other cheek, either way it's their responsibility to defend themselves. The exception to that is physical violence as the law prohibits any form of personal justice. BUT since you seem to be okay with people opposing hate speech in an unofficial capacity, hate speech itself should also be on the table. We should insult and ostracise the perpetrators, but their words are no less valid to them than yours are to you.

You can't only grant freedoms to people you agree with. Where does it end? There is no end of regimes that ban  discussion of anything that challenges their beliefs, which is exactly what you're approving of. Ethics vary wildly throughout the world and history, stop trying to impose your personal morality on others by silencing them.

You can, you totally can, you yourself just said that many regimes have done just that. And lets be honest - while nobody likes being on the receiving end of it, most people do like being on the giving end of "An easier life for the people who agree with me and any price paid for that coming from people who don't" as long as its only mildly repressive. That's very much "don't threaten me with a good time" and lets be honest, the ability to do so is why most people get into politics.

What you mean is you *shouldn't* only grant freedoms to people you agree with.

And since this is seemingly being drawn from your own personal morality and ethics, and since the situation you talk about will de facto strip freedoms away from and silence people who aren't in a position to use insult and ostracism as a weapon because there's not enough of them to do so in the face of the intimidation allowed by implicitly threatening violence... stop trying to impose your personal morality on others by silencing them?

Also... since when has insults and ostracism ever worked as a way for a minority to defend themselves anyway?



p.s. re tea news - my work place has run out of lemon and ginger so I've had to switch to green tea for today.
This is the blog of Peat - http://peatlong.blogspot.co.uk/

Offline S. K. Inkslinger

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #39 on: March 03, 2020, 12:09:53 PM »
Well, free speech is sometimes an easier way for stupid people to voice their opinions. It varies on who are expressing the opinions, contexts, and situations though, so...

Offline Magnus Hedén

  • High Lord of commas and Grand Master of semicolons
  • Ambient Mage
  • ****
  • Posts: 400
  • Total likes: 324
  • Gender: Male
  • My name is Magnus. I make stuff up.
    • View Profile
    • My Patreon
Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #40 on: March 03, 2020, 01:52:12 PM »
First off, that isn't a right, people are allowed to hate anyone for any reason.

You state that as if it's an immutable fact, but how is that not an incredibly harmful way of seeing things? If it's about fundamental freedoms, then once again, freedom for who to do what? There's always a cost, and here it is paid by the people who are hated.

You may dislike me for my opinions on complete freedoms and that's an entirely justified viewpoint.

It's not about disliking you, it's about disagreeing with you. Not everyone hates the people they disagree with.

The choice for the victims is whether they fight back or turn the other cheek, either way it's their responsibility to defend themselves.

That would be all well and fine under the assumption that everyone had the same power and capacity to defend themselves. But they don't. Not even close. The whole point is that the groups of people who are the target of hate speech are pretty much always the ones with less power (or become so, as a result). And should people really have to march in the streets just to make the point that they should be allowed to get on with their lives without facing hate on a daily basis? To defend their right to exist?

The freedom not to be oppressed should always outweigh the freedom to oppress.

The exception to that is physical violence as the law prohibits any form of personal justice. BUT since you seem to be okay with people opposing hate speech in an unofficial capacity, hate speech itself should also be on the table. We should insult and ostracise the perpetrators, but their words are no less valid to them than yours are to you.

I have no interest in engaging in hate speech in return because I know it doesn't solve anything. There's plenty of evidence that it deals real, lasting damage to people long before they are physically assaulted. Throughout history, hate speech has been the first step towards worse things. Before violence comes dehumanisation. And as a humanist, I refuse to engage in it. Yes, even when it comes to groups of people whose actions and ideas I find reprehensible.

You can't only grant freedoms to people you agree with. Where does it end? There is no end of regimes that ban discussion of anything that challenges their beliefs, which is exactly what you're approving of. Ethics vary wildly throughout the world and history, stop trying to impose your personal morality on others by silencing them.

You are deeply misrepresenting what I've said. Not once have I advocated banning discussion altogether or suppressing the opinions of people I don't agree with. And your belief that policing hate speech leads to authoritarianism isn't founded in reality; that hasn't happened in the many countries where public hate speech is criminalised today. The slippery slope argument is only valid in a case when you can provide a realistic series of events that would be the likely causal outcome of the initiating event -- in this case, criminalising hate speech.

You're trying to argue that the freedom to hate should outweigh the freedom not to be subjected to hate. I am not convinced.
You can find stories on my Patreon
I'm also on Twitter and the Book of Faces

Offline Matthew

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #41 on: March 03, 2020, 08:32:36 PM »
In Russia, it is forbidden to advocate for homosexual rights, is that right?
In China, their Social Rating system actively persecutes people who disparage the state, is that right?

The point is, countries can and do use whatever powers they have to maintain control. In the above examples, the national cultures support these actions. Even if we feel like our morals are the right ones, morality and ethics are not universal, and to suppose that we are right and they are wrong is egotistical.

-

We may not see the negative effects of any precedent for decades to come, but if the law allows a means of silencing a proportion of a population there is a chance, however small, that it will be exploited.

Take Britain, there is legislation on the books from the Miner's Strikes that prohibit people gathering in groups, laws that have since been used for unrelated reasons.

-

I don't disagree with your intention and I agree with the sentiment. I will and have, told people where to stick it. I'm also well aware of how much words can hurt. Nonetheless, dealing with these people should be handled on a cultural level, not a legal one. I for one, would much rather have my racists out in the open than hiding for fear of repercussions. Banning speech doesn't diminish their beliefs, and I'd rather know who they are.

Besides which, restricting their beliefs is just as wrong as what they do to others.

Offline Bender

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #42 on: March 03, 2020, 09:08:56 PM »
In China, their Social Rating system actively persecutes people who disparage the state, is that right?
In the above examples, the national cultures support these actions.

Not sure if you've ever been to China or Russia or just making statements based on internet internet/book knowledge. I have lived and worked in China for couple of years and can call this statement false based on experience. There is nothing cultural about accepting Govt supremacy. Being denied access to internet and facebook is not a culturally accepted phenomenon. They are prima facie complicit simply because of fear of crackdown. It's a fear driven, not culture driven.

Certain cultural and moral ethics span across cultures and societies. China, Russia are not really examples we need to see in a good society discussions.

I will and have, told people where to stick it. I'm also well aware of how much words can hurt. Nonetheless, dealing with these people should be handled on a cultural level, not a legal one. I for one, would much rather have my racists out in the open than hiding for fear of repercussions. Banning speech doesn't diminish their beliefs, and I'd rather know who they are.

I've faced racism and anti-immigration sentiments frequently and it just doesn't "hurt". When I was walking with my 8 and 10 yo nephews, we were harassed by random group yelling "go back". Try explaining free speech to the kids. Looking for an apartment in a new country and being told it is not available for people from certain countries/races doesn't just "hurt". Being at the receiving end of racism/hate speech cracks your faith in society and when it happens often it causes mental and physical trauma that few can empathize. So saying "well aware of how much words can hurt" shows you clearly don't have any such awareness.

And nobody should be subject to be at receiving end of such dehumanizing behaviour. And any society that permits that for any reason isn't one fit to be called as a good one. 

Apologies if it came out hard, but this is a sensitive issue to many and goes well beyond "feeling hurt".
« Last Edit: March 03, 2020, 09:11:05 PM by Bender »
"I shall hunt your firstborn children and laugh with glee as I tell them of your death in terrible detail, with many unpleasant adjectives!" - M-Bot

"Who needs science when you have a dragon?" - Neil DeGrasse Tyson in Sharknado 6

Offline NedMarcus

Now instead of calling people Nazi's or fascists often when they are not let them speak and destroy their ideas in a logical fashion using critical thought instead of name calling.

Trying to talk logic to anyone who has supremacy views is bound to be futile.

Perhaps. But many people call others nazis or fascists, not because they really are, but because their opinions are different. The right wing of the Labour Party in the UK has been attacked and labelled as Tory Scum, which I don't think they are. The labels, in this type of case, just serve to demonise groups of people who don't have the correct view.

Offline Rostum

Re: Free speech (or not) - and some tea
« Reply #44 on: March 04, 2020, 05:00:04 AM »
Just so.

It is done to shut down debate and serve as a warning to others that they will be treated in this way if their viewpoint differs from their worldview. The other thing that is done is to start by stating the UK (or buisiness or organisation) is so racist, homophobic, sexist or whatever when actually their has not been a time when society was more equitable and fair.