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Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:08 PM

Our Freedom of Expression Is Killing Us

Freedom of expression is a concept that that has been developed in Western Civilization over the course of many centuries. Through the often times bloody and always contentious development of that concept, Western Civilization has emerged stronger and more tolerant of diverse views. Freedom of Expression is a fundamental right, one that we will fight and sacrifice our lives to protect.

But in America, we have gone TOO FAR in advancing the all-encompasing constitutional right to feedom of expression. Nowhere else in Western Civilization except America has the concept of freedom of expression been expanded to include the right to incite riot, the right to lie and spread false propaganda, the right to promote hate and discord among the population.

A few examples.

In Canada, under section 319, it is illegal to publicly incite hatred against people based on their colour, race, religion, ethnic origin, and sexual orientation, except where the statements made are true or are made in good faith.

In the United Kingdom, there are sweeping exceptions to the right of free expression including threatening, abusive, or insulting speech or behavior likely to cause a breach of the peace, incitement, incitement to racial hatred, incitement to religious hatred, and more.

In Germany, criminal law prohibits insulting of religious faiths if they could disturb public peace, hate speech may be punishable if against segments of the population and in a manner that is capable of disturbing the public peace, including racist agitation and antisemitism, and more.

No one can argue that these countries, and more, are not free. We do not have credible examples of citizens in those countries who feel oppressed by their governments because they are NOT free to disseminate lies, false propaganda and hatred.

But what does our American brand of "freedom of expression" give us?

Rush Limbaugh, Glen Beck and a host of assorted nuts who daily spew their anger, hatred, lies, distorted half-truths and inciteful rants through the airwaves and directly into the homes of susceptible citizens.

Fox News, a "news" channel dedicated almost entirely to spreading false information, propaganda and deceptions, all on behalf of a political party that is nothing more than the legislative tool of wealthy and powerful special interests who hide behind the curtain.

Innocence of Muslims and numerous similar productions whose only intent is to incite hatred and to promote ulterior agendas.

Our constitutional right to free expression puts the dangerous power of lies, insult and hatred into the hands of those who would wield that power to incite violence, to damage foreign policy, to spread hatred and to cause untold discord among us.

Our constitutional right to free expresson puts the worst and most deceitful elements of our society into a postion to pollute and dictate the national dialogue by means of the lies, propaganda and hate speech that is their "right" to disseminate.

Our constitutional right to free expression allows special interest groups to target susceptible segments of our population with lies, false propaganda and hate speech meant only to divide America into two warring factions -- those who fall for the lies, and those who do not. The result is a nation suffering from a level of dysfunctionality that cannot be long tolerated, where one half of the country is living in the reality imposed upon them by the liars and hate-spreaders and the other half of the country is fighting not just for the truth but against the lies and false information that corrupt our national debate to such a degree that we are no longer able to trust or believe those who we elect to inform and lead us.

Our constitutional right to free expression gives us Citizens United and unimaginable big money corruption of our politics, to the point the we have simply come to expect all of our elected leaders to be bought and paid for to a lessor or greater extent.

We ask our brave soldiers now to fight and die for the constitutional right of Media for Christ and it's anti-government right-wing activists to spread their lies and hatred around the world. This is a travesty.

We must re-evaluate our positions on freedom of expression in America. Nowhere else in the Western world do we find the Rush Limbaughs, the Glen Becks, the Fox News channels, the Media for Christ companies -- all of them dedicated to spreading hate and lies -- all of them simply exercising their "First Amendment" rights. Only in America do these subversive individuals and groups operate with impunity under the umbrella of "First Amerdment Rights".

We need to take a hard look at our freedom of expression. We need a RE-DO -- something along the lines of what Canada, United Kingdom and Germany have. Otherwise, we will remain victims of those who, under the protection of the First Amendment, are free to infect the nation and the world with their sordid and devisive communications, to the detriment of us all.

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Reply Our Freedom of Expression Is Killing Us (Original post)
Jessy169 Sep 2012 OP
xchrom Sep 2012 #1
Robyn66 Sep 2012 #297
Hey Jude Sep 2012 #2
Zalatix Sep 2012 #7
Jessy169 Sep 2012 #22
Zalatix Sep 2012 #72
Riftaxe Sep 2012 #84
patrice Sep 2012 #92
WinkyDink Sep 2012 #172
COLGATE4 Sep 2012 #17
Jessy169 Sep 2012 #25
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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:10 PM

1. du rec. Nt

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Response to xchrom (Reply #1)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:20 PM

297. kr

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:12 PM

2. Alrighty then! How about a constitutional amendment repealing the 1st amendment.

 

Would that make you happy?

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Response to Hey Jude (Reply #2)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:22 PM

7. Let him or her go ahead and try to sell the repeal of the First Amendment to We the People.

 

I would love to follow Jessy around with a camera while they do that.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #7)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:34 PM

22. You did not read and comprehend

I'm talking about limiting blatant lies, hate speech and false communications -- much the same as free speech is limited in America by liable and other laws. A "re-do" of our first amendment rights is not a proposal to repeal the First Amendment, no matter how funny you think that idea might be. Your laughter seems strangely out of place when the world is burning and people are dying right now as a direct result of hate speech -- which you apparantly support -- spread by anti-government extremists. Let's hear you explain why you support the rights of those extremists responsible for Innocence of Muslims to disseminate that crap, then I'll have the opportunity to roll around on the floor laughing too.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #22)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:29 PM

72. ROTFLMAO!!! You're living in denial. A re-do is a repeal.

 

You cannot re-do the First Amendment without a repeal. You would know that if you understood the law.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #22)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:46 PM

84. Will membership on the peoples' committee that subjectively determines "truth",

"hurt feelings", and other inane violations be open to the highest bidder, or just those with the most political clout?

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Response to Riftaxe (Reply #84)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:53 PM

92. That's the way that it is done now & the reason is, in part, because it is assumed

that variety and quantity do not affect the perception of truth itself, so anyone can say anything as many times as they can possibly afford and most people will still be able to recognize whether it is real or not.

Wrong.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #22)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:41 PM

172. Has nothing to do with the 1st A., and everything to do with slander, libel, and counter-points.

And "people are dying as a direct result of" IGNORANT MUSLIMS AND THEIR MURDEROUS FANATICISM.

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Response to Hey Jude (Reply #2)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:31 PM

17. Why stop at the 1st Amendment? There are lots of the

others that folks would like to do away with - suffrage for women, african-americans treated as full citizens, etc. We would look to such powerhouses of traditional democracy like Germany for some instruction on limits - they have quite a bit of experience.

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Response to COLGATE4 (Reply #17)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:36 PM

25. Just talking about limiting free speech to NOT include hate, lies

More in line with what United Kingdom, Canada and Germany have for laws, which allows for near total freedom of expression, minus the Rush Limbaughs, Fox News channels -- all the lying liars and shock jock types. Or, do you prefer that we continue on in America giving those and others the right to spread lies, false propaganda and inciteful hate speech at will? Sounds like you fully support that. Sad.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:40 PM

32. I support the right to free unfettered speech, unequivocally.

The best remedy for the complaints you voice is more speech, not suppression. Censorship is censorship no matter how you try and dress it up. And once you begin to censor one type of speech, what's next? No thanks. I firmly believe in the Constitution. Not at all sad.

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Response to COLGATE4 (Reply #32)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:17 PM

63. Really. So it's okay that those with a voice constantly lie?

Faux Noise is just fine with you? They can use the public airwaves to lie and incite violence and hate?

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Response to Zoeisright (Reply #63)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:24 PM

69. What Is The Mechanism You Would Use To Remove FAUX Noise From The Air?

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Response to Zoeisright (Reply #63)


Response to Zoeisright (Reply #63)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:03 PM

102. It's their right as U.S. citizens. In fact, courts have held

that it's not illegal to lie in radio/tv broadcasting. Inciting violence is a horse of a different color since it's illegal. But the legal definition of inciting violence is probably a great deal stricter than what you're imagining. I've seen nothing on Faux that would meet the legal definition of inciting. We at one time had the 'Fairness Doctrine' that allowed for some reasoned response to the more egregious lies told by Faux and company, but it was struck down and has no chance of being resuscitated. So for now the answer to Faux lies isn't censoring Faux - it's getting our own message out, calling the lies what they are.

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Response to COLGATE4 (Reply #102)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 06:40 PM

282. Problem is that the only real way of countering the message is money

and creating a real liberal television station. Problem is that it's impossible to get such a to compete with the mainstream cable channels because any real liberal new tv station would be naturally anti-corporate and unfriendly to advertising. Television in America is where advertisers are the customers, not the viewers.

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Response to Jkid (Reply #282)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 11:36 AM

320. I think you're absolutely correct. That's why

Al Gore's latest endeavor isn't taking off like it should. But you are correct in that the answer to speech we don't like is OUR speech, not censorship.

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Response to Zoeisright (Reply #63)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 11:41 AM

322. Yes- Freedom of speech especially protect speech you do not like

For every one on the left that has this viewpoint remember that there is someone, probably tens of someone's who would love nothing more then to be able to shut down your voice.

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Response to Zoeisright (Reply #63)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 06:02 PM

332. Faux is the price we pay for living in a Democracy

where all political speech is permitted. You can't solve the problem with Faux by shutting them down or out. You have to solve it with more speech, pointing out that they're lying bastards who you can't believe when they tell you the sky is blue.

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Response to COLGATE4 (Reply #32)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 06:36 PM

280. How good is the concept of more speech if you have to pay for it.

These days, you have to have money and be socially vocal about such speech. The more power and privilege you have, the more power your freedom of speech has. Look at the corporate media and see why we having no real competition for a long time?

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Response to Jkid (Reply #280)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 11:37 AM

321. It's tough. But why can't we hit up donors like

Soros or Buffett for major $$ to sponsor an 'anti-Fox' network? Worked for Rupert.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:41 PM

33. Your 'lie' might be another's 'truth'

Who gets to define that?

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Response to B2G (Reply #33)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:48 PM

39. Exactly!

When I stand up and say "The truth is, there IS no god", that's a believer's version of a lie.

And if I say "all religions are equally false", is that hate speech? Is it a lie? Or do I get out of it because I'm saying "in good faith"?

What a messy, messy thing to get into.

We have free speech exceptions for slander, incitement to riot and a few others... and I think we're doing fine as it is.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:48 PM

87. You are looking at an armed rebellion that the WORLD will regret

 

If you try to make OUR free speech rights "more in line with what United Kingdom, Canada and Germany".

We are NOT the United Kingdom, Canada or Germany. We are, and always will be, the United States of America.

If you don't like that... tough. It ain't changing. Not except over my dead body.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #87)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:58 PM

123. you have been lied to

 

USA! USA! USA! USA! USA!

The US is getting farther and farther behind in the very things that define freedom. Education, health care, taking care of your poor, arts programs etc etc. It is no accident tho - took a lot of years and a lot of manipulations, but it works very well.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #123)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 09:16 PM

196. If you want a dictatorship so much, then why not move?

 

In response to your off-topic rant, yes we need a better educational system, universal health care, and a stronger social safety net. But we most CERTAINLY won't get there by taking away our First Amendment rights.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #196)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:00 AM

208. I was in the lucky sperm club and born Canadian.

 

First amendment rights got you Rush seeding hate and lies. Feel good about that?

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Response to Whisp (Reply #208)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:57 AM

216. Well, goody for you!

 

If you hate America so much and you think you're from the lucky sperm club, why are you even posting here?

This site is run inside AMERICA.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #216)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 11:01 AM

246. you are making yourself look very foolish!

 

but go ahead, I am enjoying it - as I'm sure others are too.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #246)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:06 PM

248. You're also making yourself look like an anti-American bigot.

 

Furthermore, since my statements are 100% correct and you will not come up with any counter arguments, I am not making myself look foolish.

Have a nice day!

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #248)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:21 PM

253. you have a nice day too!

 



as I will in my country that takes seriously the harm of hate speech. As seriously as Germany and the UK take it - and look how backwards and uncivilized we are compared to You.


o the irony of someone telling me to shut up about free speech because I'm a 'furiner' and have no right to have an opinion.

sweet

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Response to Whisp (Reply #253)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:26 PM

254. You can crow all day about how superior you think you are.

 

You're NOT changing our laws here, any more than we're changing yours.

I don't criticize your laws. I don't give a shit about your country's laws. Do you get it yet? Your country's laws don't bother me.

But America's freedoms bother you. And you're powerless to do anything about our freedoms. Deal with it!

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #254)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:39 PM

258. :) Yes, you got it. ''America's freedoms bother me''

 


You are an interesting person to talk to on this subject, I must say. But I have to be going now to suppress someone's speech somewhere because that's what us Canadians do in our spare time.

tee hee

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Response to Whisp (Reply #258)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:46 PM

262. Your "lucky sperm club" comment constitutes hate speech under Canadian law.

 

Bigotry against Americans. You know what that means... a visit from the RCMP!

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #262)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:53 PM

264. no it doesn't and you are now just being silly

 

unfortunately it is mostly your kind of behaviour and response and attitude that blocks honest discussion on these things. Fun to play with for a while, but nothing to learn from you.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #264)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:00 PM

265. Your "lucky sperm club" comment kicked off the silly hour.

 

You never came to learn anything, much less engage in any honest discussion. If you were honest you would admit you had nothing to offer but your pent up rage about America's freedoms. I'd say you were acting childish but my children do better than that.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #265)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:04 PM

266. Not sure why that bothers you so much.

 

It's only saying it's by pure chance where we are born and who to.

I cant figure out why that offends you so much except maybe that I consider myself lucky to be born Canadian and not American? Is that what is getting you upset - that I should be envious of you and I'm not?

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Response to Whisp (Reply #266)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:12 PM

267. Not sure why America's freedoms bother you so much.

 

You lash out at our freedoms so much that it's like you actually wish you were here and not there.

I'm lucky NOT to be Canadian. At least I don't live in a world without the First Amendment!

Admit it, you wish you were American.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #267)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:21 PM

269. I like your President a lot

 

and there are tons of good things about the USA like Rachel Maddow and scores more, but I prefer my shabby little shack and being more of a background wallflower than front and centre stage mansion all the time.

I don't know why that bothers you. Aren't we all entitled to like our own homes?

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Response to Whisp (Reply #269)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:24 PM

270. I don't know why our freedoms bother you.

 

Can you explain that?

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #270)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:39 PM

271. you have less freedoms than I do

 

I am far freer from the stresses Americans have. I couldn't take the stress of getting sick and not being able to afford to get sick and risk everything worked for all your life for that. That is just an awful way to live, in my opinion. That does bother me, a lot, to have people suffer like that and told they're the greatest people on the face of the earth propaganda.

As far as the hate speech laws here - it's just common sense that if you want to stir up violence with your speech and people get hurt or killed, you should be held as responsible as if you did the crime yourself, with your own hands. It takes nothing at all away from freedoms. In fact it makes me feel Better knowing that crazies like that have someone watching their crazy asses.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #271)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:47 PM

272. Okay so we let crazy people speak here without being sent to jail.

 

Why does that bother you so much that you feel you need to complain and complain and complain about it?

We Americans don't even care about your hate speech laws. We don't even stop to laugh at it. It's not even worth the time to be scornful.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #272)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:09 PM

274. Why is it that the US is so different from most of the rest of western countries?

 

in the way of health care, population in prisons, education and the lack of a better general social contract to look after each other?

There is something terribly wrong, don't you think?

Or do you think you, as an American, really do have it better than the most of the rest of us, just because you have that freedom of speech thing you think we don't?

we are going in circles and it's as much my fault as yours. Maybe I've leave this for a while but I'd really like you to think about my question above.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #274)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:42 PM

275. But why does our freedom of speech bother you? After all, you're so superior!

 

Do we threaten you somehow with our freedom of speech? If you think there's something terribly wrong with us, then don't visit. Problem solved, right?

Still, though, your country is critically dependent upon exports to the United States. Without us you'd be in a world of hurt.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #275)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:49 PM

277. it bothers me because it doesn't make sense

 

that a country would let their sick die, jail more people than anyone in the world, and yet be able to propagandize about how 'free' you are. It's crazy stuff to me. Absolutely no sense.

We are all dependent on each other and trading is a neighbourly thing to do. I see it as a good thing, but you see it as a way to threaten. Says a lot.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #277)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 11:15 PM

316. It doesn't make sense to YOU.

 

Yes, we've got a huge problem with a lack of universal health care. But limiting free speech isn't going to solve that.

Of course you see trade as a good thing, because you're getting all the jobs! Take us "inferior" Americans off the map, though, and all your jobs move to Mexico!

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:25 PM

116. Here is the problem

Yes, the Terry Jones crowd is evil, but the problem is nothing less than this: ANY, and I do mean ANY speech that advocates change, is bound to be labeled as offensive.

The people who slammed Martin Luther King talked about him as if he was underming every religious and culutral law, because to them, he did, and let's be honest, to many in Dixie, HE STILL DOES!

Margaret Sanger? Susan B. Anthony? Any voice for Women is spoken as of an enemy of religion and culture, and again, we all know that they still are.

There are times when a culutre can and should be challenged, but the problem about including "hate" and "lies" as that any "offened types" will say they are the subject of hate and lies.

It is easy to say "oh, we can just target the Rush Limbaughs" but you know fully well that the lawyers would find a way to stifle the Glenn greenwald and ceny Ugyrs, which means that the only people who can speak freely are those that can A) Afoord the lawyers B) afford the thugs to kill people, which of course, puts anyone on the left at a distinct disadvantage.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:34 PM

143. Yes, I do support the right to lie and I do support the right to speak hatefully.

It has nothing to do with whether I agree with the content of the speech itself.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:46 PM

155. Mass media must be responsible for truth and common sense and the individual must not incite to

riot. How 'bout that?

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Response to The Wielding Truth (Reply #155)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:56 PM

273. Actually I would point out that you would have to get rid of

state and federal laws already IN THE BOOKS, at both levels, dealing with incitement to a riot. No, it is not protected speech.

I am not surprised you do not know this.

I referenced bellow both a MONTANA law and the U. S. Code regarding this

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:08 PM

186. I brought this exact point up the last time this crap happened and was nearly run off the boards.

But I'm glad people are slowly beginning to see this is a real problem. You can have free speech and expression and eliminate the liars, hatemongerers and false prophets without the Taliban taking over. It's entirely possible.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #25)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:29 AM

231. And how do you define "hate," "lies"?

Do you just know them when you see them?

What if words you consider to be "hate" and "lies" are considered to be "fair" and "truthful" to someone else?

German law does not permit speech that is supportive of NAZIs and so, the German speech right is narrower than ours in that sense, but unless the law has changed over the past 15 years or so, German law protects the speech of employees and virtually prohibits and employer from firing an employee for speech. Employees' speech is not protected in the US.

Free speech is fundamental to our way of life. Sorry. I totally disagree with you.

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Response to Hey Jude (Reply #2)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:33 PM

21. That's a false choice

The First Amendment doesn't protect you for liability from a variety of categories of speech related actions:

- defamation
- trademark infringement
- copyright infringement
- solicitation of prostitution or other crimes
- mail fraud / wire fraud
- advocating violent overthrow of the government
- threats, assault
- perjury
- intimidating witnesses / jurors
- forgery
- cyberstalking
- impersonation

There are a variety of narrow categories of speech which we treat as "speech as an action" of some kind. In other words, these are, in one sense, acts of speaking or writing. But the speaking or writing parts of them are a vehicle for performing some sort of act defined as incurring civil or in some cases criminal liability.

To discuss, hypothetically, whether there could be additional classifications is not some kind of assault on the Constitution.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #21)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:37 PM

26. But Prohibiting "Hate Speech" Is Of A Whole Different Order

.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #26)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:58 PM

49. Simple assault


Simple assault - "I'm going to punch you."

What happens is that simple categorizations like "hate speech" mean different things, and it doesn't advance an intelligent discussion to just throw around labels as if they substituted for a discussion. It simply ends discussion.

Now, as noted above, there are several jurisdictions which have narrow definitions of speech-related acts which correspond in one way or another to what gets referred to in shorthand as "hate speech".

Canada and Germany are two good examples. Now, the primary concern with any limit on speech is the prevention of communication of political argument. That's by no means the only thing, but it is the important one.

Has democracy in Canada or Germany been undermined by their "hate speech" laws? Are their jails filled with political prisoners? No, they don't seem to be.

That suggest that maybe for the purposes of discussion, a closer look at how they define and enforce it might be worthwhile.

Evaluating ideas according to whether or not they comport with some kind of dogma or philosophy is one of the problems with political thought in this country, instead of determine rationally whether something may or may not have a desirable or undesirable set of outcomes.

I'm very much a first amendment absolutist. Over the last couple of years, working in an area of international dispute resolution, I've been surprised by two things. First, by the extent to which many smart folks in Western countries consider the US to have developed what they see as a pathological fetish around free speech absolutism. Second, by how interesting some of the arguments and explanations of theirs are not easily dismissed by slogans. Canadians and Germans have more politically informed populations, and a wider spectrum of political identification.

How is that possible? How can other democratic countries have greater political participation and a wider range of represented ideas in their legislatures, while at the same time not having as permissive a range of expressible speech?

One of their answers is that, to some extent at the extreme ends, the restrictions actually require political argument to be conducted within rational bounds. You can't just say "kill all the people I don't like," you have to argue for your point over theirs.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #49)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:04 PM

52. It Still Come Down To What Speech Is Verboten And What Speech Isn't

And I prefer to come down on the side as determining what speech isn't as narrowly as possible.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #52)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:39 PM

77. Absolutely

That is why narrow definitions matter.

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #77)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:52 PM

90. Please Read The Thread

The OP said calling a woman a slut should be actionable unless the woman actually is a slut. I don't know what is harder to get around, the sexist implications of the charge or actually proving it. I wrote that Ed Schultz said Laura Ingraham was a "slut". Should he be thrown in the hoosegow? He said, " No, because she is one." presumably because he doesn't like her politics.

Do you see how arbitrary these laws can be ?


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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #90)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:51 PM

121. No he didn't

Please point out where I wrote that. That is exactly what I did NOT write. Here is what I wrote: Given the fact that Ann Coulter IS a right wing slut, I think that statement should be allowed. Please don't be like all the brainwashed and brain-dead rightwingers who say anything and make stuff up to prove a point that lacks merit on it's own. And, BTW, I would not consider that hate speech or a lie. I am NOT talking about taking away ALL freedom of speech, no matter how hard you might try to twist my words to make that lame point. We CAN reduce the lies, the hate and the false propaganda in America WITHOUT taking away people's rights to free speech, but only if you and others like you get a f**cking clue.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #121)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:07 PM

126. Where's The Proof That Ann Coulter Is A Slut?

Actually it was Laura Ingraham who Ed Schultz called a slut

Do you have sworn testimony from every person Coulter and Ingraham had sex with?

And how many people can a woman have have sex with before she's labeled a slut?

And since you have concluded that Colter and Ingraham are sluts and shouldn't be afforded the hate crime protection you advocate I assume you defend Rush Limbaugh's right to call Sandra Fluke a slut without fear of prosecution

It seems under your law people are free to insult, disrespect, lampoon, et cetera any person or group as long as its a person or group you don't like.

What's to stop the authorities from using this new power on groups you like?


And you can write fucking here. We don't have any censors. LOL


As an aside I found your support of the use of the word, slut, puzzling in light of your emphasis on sensitivity. I think the term is actually prohibited on DU.


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Response to jberryhill (Reply #49)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:40 PM

79. +1 nt

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #49)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:46 PM

118. Thanks jberryhill for your fabulous critique!

I knew that if I put my little opinion out there, that somebody who can express my point of view expertly would come along and do just what you did. All these die-hard no holds barred anything goes first amendment fanatics are enablers and supporters of the pathological state of political dialogue in America today. The term "pathological fetish around free speech absolutism" describes the situation perfectly. There are many highly placed and constitutionally learned people in America and around the world who are recognizing the downward spiral that the "anything goes" free speech atmosphere of America is producing. Hopefully, the admireably idealistic but still blind-to-reality first amendment fanatics posting on this and other DU articles will eventually begin to understand.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #26)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:41 PM

80. It all depends on the details

Why does it work in other countries which have had no discernible impact on political participation or the arts?

Are Canadians a free people?

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Response to jberryhill (Reply #21)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:21 PM

133. Hmm

 

Does First Amendment protect US Dollar as form of speech, a promise?

Could US Dollar be sued to shut up and made cease to exist if it can be shown that it is fraud and forgery?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:14 PM

3. More pro-censorship shit.

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Response to Odin2005 (Reply #3)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:30 PM

16. Sounds like you support Glen Beck, Fox News and Rush Limbaugh

Somehow, I get the feeling that you would be the first to praise Canada for having laws that do not allow Fox News-like propaganda channels to operate within their borders, but at the same time you fully support the shock jocks and liars who are in the business of spreading their hatred and extremism. Have you really thought about what you're doing, or do you just automatically give full support to unlimited free speech, regardless of the consequences?

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #16)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:34 PM

23. I Support Their Right To Free Speech As I Support Your Free Speech And Mine

.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #16)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:44 PM

35. Who decides what's acceptable?

THere are probably plenty of people out there who find Rachel Maddow and Lawrence O'Donnell as offensive as we find Rush and Hannity.

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Response to Mz Pip (Reply #35)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:52 AM

234. ^.^ This

It goes both ways. Who do YOU trust to make the decision that my claims of Christianity being a made-up religion based on older religions is against the law or not? It's not hateful, it's not said to incite violence but it's what I believe but according to some of the laws above in the OP, I could get in trouble for saying it.

If money continues to play a big role in government/politics, it's pretty easy to see where this nation is going. The Republicans are already making sure that repub federal justices are winning races or are on the bench nationwide. If elected, Romney would stack the Supreme Court with ultra-right justices. So, let's say they are successful in "owning" the courts, do you want them being the one's responsible for making the decision about what free speech is? I certainly don't.

It's not about not wanting limits, if handled fairly, limits COULD be a good thing. It's about who is in charge of enforcing those limits and there isn't a person in the world I'd trust to judge my speech.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #16)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:05 PM

54. I support Glen Beck, Fox News, and Rush Limbaugh. The KKK too.

I'm a card carrying ACLU member to boot. I think they're all asshats and their opinions are worthless, but I absolutely support their right to voice them. The PEOPLE have the right to judge speech as "acceptable" and "unacceptable", and can demonstrate their opinions by ignoring those they disagree with. The GOVERNMENT should have no role in determining what kind of speech should be allowed.

As for "consequences"...well, freedom is worth a bit of death and destruction. Wars have been fought over things far more trivial.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #54)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:33 PM

142. Exactly

Well said.

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Response to Xithras (Reply #54)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:30 PM

255. Another card carrying member here.

The right of Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Hannity, the KKK, etc. to speak out is more important than any of us. Because we don't like what they have to say, it is 100X more important to defend their right to say it, despite attacks from outsiders, whomever may be offended, etc.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #16)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:30 PM

140. False dichotomy fail

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #16)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:38 PM

191. Who decides what is propaganda or not?

Think about what would happen if teabaggers win the election and start banning things THEY don't like, things THEY consider propaganda.

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Response to Odin2005 (Reply #191)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:33 PM

256. Whoever is in charge

Anything can be labeled propaganda, hate-speech, anti-American, etc.

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Response to Odin2005 (Reply #3)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:35 PM

24. Is that your idea of a conversation?

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Response to Odin2005 (Reply #3)


Response to Jessy169 (Reply #122)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:51 PM

177. What the hell do you NOT grasp about the First Amendment? it is NOT up for repeal, FGS.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:18 PM

4. Spam deleted by Hassin Bin Sober (MIR Team)

 

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:20 PM

5. If mocking religion was a criminal offense, DU would be a different place.

No more Magic Underwear jokes. No more denigration of Joe Smith. No more people referring to the Pope as a Nazi.

Oh, and Helen Thomas would probably be arrested for her anti-Semitic spiel.

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Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #5)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:25 PM

10. In England, Canada and Germany people are free to mock magic underwear

The arguement is in favor of limiting free speech to NOT include communications meant to deceive, to incite and to spread hate

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #10)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:27 PM

14. How Is Not Hateful To Make Fun Of Garb That Is Required By A Certain Religion?

And how would member of said religion not be incited by such attack?

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #14)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:52 PM

178. OFGS. Are you American? Because, seriously, dude.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #178)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:56 PM

181. What's Your Point?

The OP said hateful speech can be prosecuted or more specifically speech he found hateful. I demurred. My argument is in favor of hateful speech. If you want to make fun of ritualistic garments, for lack of a better word, that's your right.

Like the pres said, " Don't fire, first and aim later." You might shoot a friend.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #14)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 11:42 AM

323. Wait, what?

You HAVE to be joking

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Response to Marrah_G (Reply #323)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 01:24 PM

325. The Point Flew Right Over Your Head If You Followed The Discussion Within The Discussion

Making fun of someone's religious garb could be construed as hateful as well as puerile and a lot of other adjectives but, imho, the First Amendment protects hateful as well as puerile speech.


on edit- I need to elaborate because this point is important to me. If I'm in a conversation and a person starts disrespecting someone over an immutable or virtually immutable characteristic I am either going to call that person out on the spot, depending on the danger to myself, but I will never have anything to do with that person again. However I would defend his or her right to say it.


If you read this thread closely the disturbing theme is that "we" can use new hate speech laws as a hammer on our enemies when it can just as well be turned around as a hammer on "us"... Someone's sacred cow is somebody else's hamburger.


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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #325)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 02:28 PM

329. You totally lost me

I am giving up on this thread. I have a cold and now I am confused as hell. Will read it again later and maybe then I will understand what you and others are saying

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #10)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:28 PM

15. You could be arrested and tried.

You would have to persuade a court that your intentions were good.

With this kind of law on the books, it's safest just to never mock religion.

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Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #15)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:33 PM

20. I have rarely, indeed never, been arrested for mocking religion here.

And we don't reverse the burden of proof here, either.

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #20)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:38 PM

27. Where is "here"? (nt)

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Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #27)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:48 PM

38. One of the countries where you think I'd be arrested and tried. (nt)

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #38)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:17 PM

62. It's pretty smart of you to choose to post on a US website, instead of one based in your country.

You can say whatever you like, and the authorities have no reason to think you are not an American. So you benefit from US First Amendment protections without actually being an American.

And I don't blame you for refusing to divulge your country of residence in this thread. If you did, the authorities in that country could pick through your posts to check if you have insulted any religions or posted what they consider to be "hate speech" and perhaps prosecute you.

It's good to see that the First Amendment benefits not only Americans, but also foreigners who post anonymously on US websites.

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Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #62)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 10:20 PM

202. LMFAO

That seriously has to be the dumbest post I have EVER seen on DU. So the only reason Canadian authorities aren't arresting him is because he's on an American website 'protected' by you (aka the US).

HFS, I've seen it all here.

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Response to laundry_queen (Reply #202)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 10:42 PM

203. Ah, it's Canada. With its notorious Canadian Human Rights Tribunals.

"Anyone who runs an online message board, from the lowliest vanity blogger to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, can be charged under federal human rights law if visitors to their site post hateful comments, according to the Canadian Human Rights Commission.

In final submissions this morning at the hate speech hearing of Marc Lemire, operator of the far-right freedomsite.org and a prominent figure in Canada's "white rights" movement, CHRC lawyer Margot Blight said there is no "free pass" for the website owners.

"If a message board owner can't manage to ensure the content of the message board is complying with Canadian law, then the message board should not be operating," she said.

Athanasios Hadjis, who is hearing the case on behalf of the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal, questioned whether this applies even to messages that appear briefly, and without the owners knowledge or consent. He used the example of the CBC, which operates several chat forums for readers to discuss news stories, and asked what would happen if a hateful message somehow got past automatic filters and live editors."


http://westernstandard.blogs.com/shotgun/2008/09/marc-lemire-and.html

Finally, the Post criticized the procedures and structure of HRC hearings, citing a number of specific problems:

Third parties not involved in the alleged offences may nonetheless file complaints.
Plaintiffs have sometimes been given access to the commissions' investigation files and given the power to direct investigators.
Truth is not a defence.
Defendants are not always permitted to face their accusers.
Normal standards for assuring the validity of evidence do not apply.
Hearsay is admitted.
The government funds the plaintiff but the defendant is on his/her own.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Human_Rights_Commission_free_speech_controversy

When a Canadian can be hauled before this kind of kangaroo court for making comments online that someone considers hurtful, I really don't blame Canadians for using US message boards like DU instead.

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Response to Nye Bevan (Reply #203)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:00 AM

236. We on DU have our own self-inflicted kangaroo court, I suppose.

We agree to limit the speech on this board.

But people whose speech is removed from this board can go post it elsewhere. We just don't choose to read ugly stuff or stuff we consider ugly. And think of how our opinions differ on what is acceptable and what is not.

Self-imposed censorship can work within isolated pockets of a society, but it will inevitably be applied arbitrarily if it is imposed across a society unless it is applied with great care and definition.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #236)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:02 AM

237. Also, people who post unacceptable stuff on this board don't go to prison.

They are not even fined.

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #20)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:44 AM

232. Do you mean, Posteritatis, that you live in a country in which the

Defendant must prove innocence? Is that what you mean by reversing the burden of proof? I didn't know such a country existed.

What do you mean by reverse the burden of proof?

Do you mean that a speaker should prove prior to speaking that his speech will not incite to riot.

As a mother, I can tell you that telling a child to turn off the TV can incite a small riot in the home. We don't think of that tantrum as a riot, but if you get a crowd of a couple of hundred people screaming at someone to stop expressing their opinion, to, in a sense, change the channel to something the crowd wants to hear, then it is a riot.

If people don't like a video saying horrible things about their religion or their country, then they shouldn't watch the video.

On DU, atheists criticize and say horrible things about fundamentalist Christians on occasion. But fundamentalist Christians don't riot when they read them.

And Wikis (don't know much about the religion but it exists) are vilified a lot -- however they don't riot either.

You just don't riot over insults about your ideas or beliefs when expressed by people who disapprove of your ideas or beliefs. That is childish. Infantile. We would say that it indicates deep insecurity in the validity of your own ideas or beliefs to be so sensitive to what others say or think about them.

The advantage of free speech is that people who are exposed to ideas that displease them can examine their own ideas. That is wonderful.

And when censorship is permitted it inevitably limits scientific inquiry -- which causes countries and nations to become backward, daring not to question their beliefs and superstitions.

Free speech is wonderful.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #232)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:07 PM

249. You interpreted that in the exact opposite manner that I expressed it. Well done! (nt)

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #20)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:56 AM

235. rarely arrested -- Good heavens.

If you could risk being arrested for mocking your religion, you probably would not dare to even entertain a mocking thought about your religion. You would be a prisoner of your religion. Your government would not need to arrest you because you would already be under the arrest of your religion -- of the thought police implanted in your brain by your religion.

Horrors!

When I was 12, I sat in church and read the affirmation of faith of my then religion. Being a person blessed or cursed with a very rational mind, I asked myself whether I could honestly say, truthfully say that I believed that affirmation to be true.

I parsed each word. I was 12 and barely confirmed in my religion. I loved my parents and wanted to please them more than anything. But something jarred me. I had great difficulty honestly saying that I knew for a fact certainly enough to say that I believed in the truth of those words. It really troubled me.

So when I grew a little older, I joined a religion in which I was not required to recite a statement that I could not in good conscience say I believed absolutely to be true. I still believed in the core moral principles of the religion in which I was raised. But I rejected some of the language of that religion which I could not repeat or believe as objectively true.

I have never regretted questioning the language, the speech of my original religion. I do not disrespect those who are of that religion. I just recognize that I have a different relationship to language and thought that makes it difficult for me to claim to believe things that make no sense to me.

I am grateful for freedom of speech and freedom of thought especially about religion. I do not expect or demand that others agree with me or see things as I see them or even respect my beliefs and my lack of belief in some things. It's called freedom. It is fundamental to my life. Freedom of thought and freedom of expression.

I pity anyone who could possibly be arrested for criticizing the religion of the majority of his countrymen. How sad.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #235)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:07 PM

250. Christ on a crutch, people here need to learn what sarcasm is. (nt)

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #10)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:52 PM

43. I have no sympathy for these men

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #10)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:07 PM

104. Again, what about Christianity?

 

If someone mocks Christianity in public, is that to be considered "inciting or spreading hate?"


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Response to Bluefin Tuna (Reply #104)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:13 PM

110. OR what about this?

http://thinkprogress.org/lgbt/2012/09/13/841651/tony-perkins-kicks-off-values-voters-summit-by-comparing-homosexuality-to-drug-abuse/

While his speech is vile, and should be condemned... I won't want to see him in jail! I am a homosexual who believes in his First Amendment rights to be vile and contemptible and we should rightly condemn him for his views, but not put him in jail.

Just as my saying that religiously motivated anti-gay speech is vile and contemptible...

Is that hate speech on MY part?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:20 PM

6. No thanks.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:24 PM

8. I Think Some Of Our Guys Said Some Pretty Hateful Things About Right Wing Figures

Should they be thrown in the same hoosegow with Beck, Hannity, Boortz, and Limbaugh?

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #8)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:26 PM

11. Were they true statements -- then, ok

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #11)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:32 PM

18. Ed Schultz Called Laura Ingraham A "Right Wing Slut"

Last edited Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:09 PM - Edit history (1)

Many here have called Ann Coulter much worse (LOL)


Should they be put in the hoosegow?

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #18)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:39 PM

31. To be determined

I'm not sure. Given the fact that Ann Coulter IS a right wing slut, I think that statement should be allowed. But who am I to decide? Do they allow that kind of speech in other western nations under their "right to freedom of expression" laws? Maybe, maybe not. Do you support the right of Rush Limbaugh to paralyze and brainwash weaker minds with his lies and false narratives? Do you?

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #31)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:51 PM

42. What Proof Do You Have That Ann Coulter Is A Slut?

If there was a right wing government and no Bill Of Rights in America you might very well be thrown in the hoosegow for calling her a "slut". Here, in America you would be ostracized for using sexist language demeaning to all women. I like the latter approach better.


Of course I support the rights of Beck and Limbaugh to spew their inanities. I just hope our side is successful in rebutting them.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #31)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:15 PM

111. really, dear? you KNOW that Ann Coulter is a "slut".

Yes, I support Rush the hideous, right to free speech. And who the fuck are you to decide that "weaker minds" need protection?

It is funny that you spew the crap you'd ban.

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Response to cali (Reply #111)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:02 PM

124. Except, Cali, I didn't really say what "I would ban", did I

My point is that hate speech, lies and false propaganda are being used by powerful forces with ulterior motives, and that our first amendment rights are providing safe haven for those who use lies and deceit and slander to further their own objectives at the expense of democracy. It is a disease. I did NOT list any one or more things that I would or would not "ban" -- that would be most absurd for me to do that, and it is equally absurd for those posting on this article to accuse me of that.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #124)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:19 PM

131. That's The Whole Problem With Abridging Freedom Of Speech

Somebody is going to be responsible for abridging it and it might be speech you like being abridged by somebody you don't like or it might be speech you don't like being left unabridged by somebody you don't like.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #18)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:05 PM

53. Exactly!!! And I've called Romney and the Repbs WORSE!!!

 

Free speech is there to protect the speech you disagree with just as much as your own speech!!

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #11)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:11 PM

165. So we would constantly be in court proving statements

Great society you have envisioned there.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:25 PM

9. The main issue is the lines between words, incitement, and actual actions

As a lot of discussions of this sort of thing make pretty clear, those lines can be fuzzy at times; deciding where those lines lie, and how fuzzy we want them to be, is an important thing to discuss.

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Response to Posteritatis (Reply #9)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:27 PM

13. Totally agree

Let's have that discussion. Other countries in our western part of the world have managed to find a comfortable and reasonable place to draw the line. We should do the same.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:26 PM

12. Good for you

 



And no.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:33 PM

19. No thanks. I'll choose freedom of speech over religious mob appeasement

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:38 PM

28. No thank you.

Blasphemy laws? Would you impose stoning as the penalty?

I like our freedoms of expression just the way they are.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:38 PM

29. The likes of Limbaugh could be fixed with better radio licensing laws and

Last edited Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:02 PM - Edit history (1)

anti-trust enforcement like we used to have. It isn't a free speech problem, it's a corporatism problem. Revising the Constitution is never as good an idea as it seems to be. That isn't the answer to every little thing.

As for religion, it's fair game. (And I say that as a Christian.) And no, I don't take kindly to any other group anywhere presuming to tell us what we have to respect. Bull. Especially not a mob that has no problem with random destruction and murder... they aren't about to school anyone with a lick of sense on how to act. They are not qualified to give directives, as they have amply proven this week.

This country was founded on freedom of religion and freedom of speech, and that is not about to change because a bunch of ignorant mobs halfway around the world don't like it.

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Reply #29)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:42 PM

34. I agree, but

I don't believe that I am talking about revising the constitution. Freedom of Speech is guaranteed (or was that in the Bill of Rights?), and doesn't need a re-write. But the many interpretations and lack of reasonable limitations that require mental gymnastics from teams of lawyers to come up might be looked at, and possibly re-done.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #34)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:54 PM

45. It's The First Amendment To The Constitution.

It's the amendment that affords us the freedom on which all our other freedoms rest.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #34)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:20 PM

65. No offense intended, but you really should inform yourself a bit better for this argument.

Your response here makes clear that you have only a limited grasp of The Constitution on a fundamental level. The Bill of Rights is actually part of The Constitution. It is the name given to the first 10 Amendments to Constitution.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Bill_of_Rights

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Reply #65)


Response to Vinnie From Indy (Reply #65)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:24 PM

134. Let me guess -- you're a lawyer

I have the highest regard for lawyers and attorneys of course. But I have often noted that they are the first to point out that somebody like me doesn't have the expertise to post my opinion (opine, I believe is the word often used), the implication being that since I'm not an expert then I shouldn't have anything to say at all. Respectfully, Vinnie, I disagree. I may not have all the legal intricacies of constitutional law memorized like you, but I still know a stinking rat when I see one -- which is what the constitutional right to lie, falsely accuse and incite is -- in my extremely ignorant and unlearned opining opinion, of course.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #134)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 05:20 AM

224. You don't need to be a lawyer.

If you want to criticize the First Amendment, you really ought to know some basics -- such as that the First Amendment is part of the Bill of Rights and that the Bill of Rights is part of the Constitution.

I knew those things before I went to law school. In fact, I knew them before I went to college.

Of course, because we have very strong protection for freedom of speech, you have a Constitutional right to express opinions on a subject without having any particular knowledge of it. Nevertheless, you might consider choosing to become better informed before expressing an opinion. You're also more likely to persuade others that way.

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #224)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:06 AM

239. Well said, Jim Lane.



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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #239)

Sun Sep 23, 2012, 06:10 PM

333. K&R. Well done.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #34)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:10 PM

107. Before you make this sort of OP

you really should educate yourself on the Bill of Rights and why they were written...then look up how to amend the Constitution and see if the framers thought what you want "doesn't need a rewrite."

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Response to Waiting For Everyman (Reply #29)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:56 PM

162. I'll agree with you on licensing laws

The airways belong to the public, and are leased. Leases come with conditions.

Every time Rush opens his mouth he should have to make a disclaimer to the effect that, he's a bloviating asshole and what he's about to say is akin to a steaming pile of shit.

As far as news goes, you should not be able to substitute lies for truth. They are not the same.



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Response to malokvale77 (Reply #162)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:08 PM

164. Totally agree, and you may have hit on THE solution

As long as Rush Limbaugh, Glen Beck, Fox News, creators of the Innocence of Muslims movie and all others in that category are required to preface their statements with that or equally pointed disclaimer, then there should be no problem. They get to spew their lies and insults and incitements to hatred (which sometimes leads to riot), we get to respond with exactly what we think of them for saying it, everybody understands who the liars are... that works.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #164)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:37 PM

170. Thank you

I know, "bloviating asshole" and "steaming pile of shit" might be considered over the top, but if we want freedom of speech we should have to own it.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:39 PM

30. First of all, you have demonstrated poor knowledge of world media,

 

Fox news, in all of its various configurations, is a global empire. It spreads hate and propaganda worldwide.

Second of all, if you start censoring in order to get rid of opinions that you find hateful or propaganda, you will also be getting rid of opinions that are actually beneficial and truthful. That sword that you want to wield will cut both ways.

For that reason alone, it is best to leave the First Amendment alone.

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Response to MadHound (Reply #30)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:53 PM

44. Fox News is available in other countries

true, but their programming is only translated from English to the native languages in most countries. Fox News, for example, does not develop propaganda and political commentary to influence elections in Sweden, Japan, Netherlands, etc... And viewership of Fox News in those countries is miniscule. So, you got me on a technicality.

I'm prepared to give up one or two opportunities to advance truth on the extreme side of "what is right" to eliminate the torrential flood of lies and hateful incitements produced by the extreme side of "what is wrong".

We all see the armies of right-wing lunatics and extremists, and wonder how Romney could even be taken seriously as a candidate. But when you've got 24/7/365 lies and propaganda which brainwash and "inform" with lies such a large segment of the population, that is only possible because "freedom of speech" gaurantees freedom to lie, falsely accuse, create false narratives, obfuscate, deceive and incite hatred.

Is that what you support?

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #44)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:19 PM

112. Again, you are demonstrating your ignorance of Fox and its worldwide reach

 

Fox News is part of a larger multinational media corporation, News Corp. News Corp. has TV broadcast operations in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America. These aren't isolated retranslations of Fox News, but fully fledged, native language broadcast networks. Furthermore, News Corp. has print and internet arms that also span the globe. This is not a technicality, this is a global network of which the US operations are but a part.

Furthermore, if we went with your proposal, it won't just be "one or two opportunities to advance truth" but a whole flood. Fox News goes, so does MSNBC. Rush Limbaugh goes, so does Mike Malloy, Sean Hannity goes, so does Thom Hartman, Glenn Beck, Mother Jones, on and on.

And frankly, the notion that you can legally impose "the truth" upon our media is ludicrous, with even more horrible consequences that would be legally applied to individuals as well. Which is why there is legal precedent stating that yes, in most cases it is legal to lie.

Sorry, but the best way to fight disinformation and propaganda is with information and the truth. Trying to restrict speech in order to pursue some quest for "the truth" has always turned out to be a disaster.

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Response to MadHound (Reply #112)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:28 PM

136. But you're obscuring the main point and playing gotcha

The main point, MadHound, is that even though Fox News does extend around the world, it is only here in America where Fox News is free to use lies, false accusations and other underhanded "free speech" tricks to influence elections. So what if Fox News is on some cable channel in Japan or Norway -- BFD! They are NOT allowed to manipulate the elections and political processes in those countries with programming specifically dedicated to do just that, like they are here in America. Again, B-F-D!

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:47 PM

36. It does NOT include the 'freedom to incite riot.'

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Response to elleng (Reply #36)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:31 PM

141. Yes, it does

You can't incite a riot by either communicating specific wording that encourages or incites a riot -- I can't say to the Muslims, "on your mark, get set, start rioting and burning now". But I can say "Your prophet's mother wears army boots", knowing full well beforehand that the logical outcome of that statement will be to start a riot. Me saying "Your prophet's mother wears army boots" is protected speech.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:48 PM

37. freedom of speech is stupid

there, i said it.

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Response to BOG PERSON (Reply #37)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:55 PM

47. Who's Freedom?

.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #47)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:19 PM

64. in the main, freedom for perverts and douchebags

normal decent people don't have any use for freedom of speech

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Response to BOG PERSON (Reply #64)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:45 PM

261. They don't in authoritarian societies either.

That's because, in those societies, the government gets to choose who the normal, decent people are.

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Response to Dash87 (Reply #261)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:19 PM

268. and they're usually right, too

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Response to BOG PERSON (Reply #268)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:43 PM

299. Would you want to leave it up to a Republican Congress

and President to decide who the "decent" people are in American society, and thereby limit the speech of those that don't fall under their definition.

I wouldn't.

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Response to BOG PERSON (Reply #37)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:43 PM

260. You just criticized one of our government's founding documents.

No government agents tracked you, came to your house, and arrested you for doing so. Doing so is not illegal either. Why is that?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:49 PM

40. Actually incitement to a riot is penalized under law

This Montana Law, came up, just from doing a simple search.


45-8-104. Incitement to riot. (1) A person commits the offense of incitement to riot if the person purposely and knowingly commits an act or engages in conduct that urges other persons to riot. The act or conduct may not include the mere oral or written advocacy of ideas or expression of belief that does not urge the commission of an act of immediate violence.
(2) Except as provided in subsection (3), a person convicted of the offense of incitement to riot shall be fined not to exceed $500 or be imprisoned in the county jail for a term not to exceed 6 months, or both.
(3) A person who commits the offense of incitement to riot while incarcerated at any state adult correctional facility shall be imprisoned for not less than 1 year or more than 5 years.

History: En. 94-8-104 by Sec. 1, Ch. 513, L. 1973; R.C.M. 1947, 94-8-104; amd. Sec. 2, Ch. 54, L. 1983; amd. Sec. 1695, Ch. 56, L. 2009.

http://data.opi.mt.gov/bills/mca/45/8/45-8-104.htm

Libel and slander are also limits to it, and of course my all time favorite about screaming fire in a theater.

Don't blame you for not knowing this, most people have the absolute view that there is no limits, like our 2nd amendment friends. Now back to writing the news story on a court case...

I really expect the wiki to be thrown at me once again...

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #40)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:34 PM

144. Is that only in Montana, or is that Federal law too?

Reason I ask is because I could have sworn I had a conversation with three lawyers yesterday who explained in no uncertain terms that the video Innocence of Muslims is NOT an encitement to riot, even though the people who created that video knew beforehand that the riots were the most likely result.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #144)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 09:56 PM

200. Here is one of the U.S. Code in question

18 U.S.C. 2101 : US Code - Section 2101: Riots
Search 18 U.S.C. 2101 : US Code - Section 2101: Riots
Search by Keyword or Citation
(a) Whoever travels in interstate or foreign commerce or uses any
facility of interstate or foreign commerce, including, but not
limited to, the mail, telegraph, telephone, radio, or television,
with intent -
(1) to incite a riot; or
(2) to organize, promote, encourage, participate in, or carry
on a riot; or
(3) to commit any act of violence in furtherance of a riot; or
(4) to aid or abet any person in inciting or participating in
or carrying on a riot or committing any act of violence in
furtherance of a riot;
and who either during the course of any such travel or use or
thereafter performs or attempts to perform any other overt act for
any purpose specified in subparagraph (A), (B), (C), or (D) of this
paragraph - (!1)
Shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned not more than five
years, or both.
(b) In any prosecution under this section, proof that a defendant
engaged or attempted to engage in one or more of the overt acts
described in subparagraph (A), (B), (C), or (D) of paragraph (1) of
subsection (a) (!2) and (1) has traveled in interstate or foreign
commerce, or (2) has use of or used any facility of interstate or
foreign commerce, including but not limited to, mail, telegraph,
telephone, radio, or television, to communicate with or broadcast
to any person or group of persons prior to such overt acts, such
travel or use shall be admissible proof to establish that such
defendant traveled in or used such facility of interstate or
foreign commerce.
(c) A judgment of conviction or acquittal on the merits under the
laws of any State shall be a bar to any prosecution hereunder for
the same act or acts.
(d) Whenever, in the opinion of the Attorney General or of the
appropriate officer of the Department of Justice charged by law or
under the instructions of the Attorney General with authority to
act, any person shall have violated this chapter, the Department
shall proceed as speedily as possible with a prosecution of such
person hereunder and with any appeal which may lie from any
decision adverse to the Government resulting from such prosecution.
(e) Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to make
it unlawful for any person to travel in, or use any facility of,
interstate or foreign commerce for the purpose of pursuing the
legitimate objectives of organized labor, through orderly and
lawful means.
(f) Nothing in this section shall be construed as indicating an
intent on the part of Congress to prevent any State, any possession
or Commonwealth of the United States, or the District of Columbia,
from exercising jurisdiction over any offense over which it would
have jurisdiction in the absence of this section; nor shall
anything in this section be construed as depriving State and local
law enforcement authorities of responsibility for prosecuting acts
that may be violations of this section and that are violations of
State and local law.

http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/uscode/18/I/102/2101

And that had Wikipedia, apparently supersedes the U.S. Code, thrown at me yesterday. That is when I finally decided to give up on having these discussions here.

It goes back originally to the labor fights of the 19th century.

No, I am not a lawyer, and funny, an actual lawyer explained to me why he no longer engages his neighbors, let alone strangers, on it

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #200)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 05:34 AM

225. I doubt that that section would apply to the anti-Muslim film.

I am a lawyer, but I haven't researched this point and don't practice in this area. I'll offer you a semi-educated guess: Incitement under this statute probably means that the speaker urged people who agreed with him or her to take violent action, and they did. It probably does not mean that people who disagreed with the speaker took violent action, and that the speaker could therefore be punished. That would be the "heckler's veto". It has sometimes been used as a justification for shutting down speech -- stopping a speaker from speaking because he's getting the crowd so angry at him that violence might result -- but I think even that much is a bad idea. Criminally prosecuting the speaker because the crowd got angry at him is outlandish. It's like saying that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., if he had recovered from his gunshot wounds, could have been prosecuted for inciting James Earl Ray to violence.

I'll admit my bias here, as an agnostic. I should be free to say unkind things about superstitions, even if some superstitious people get upset and even if a few of them get violently upset. (I don't normally refer to Islam, Christianity, and the like as "superstitions" but I'm being deliberately offensive here to make my point.)

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #225)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:13 AM

241. I agree with you, Jim Lane.

Under our statutes, the people on the scene in front of the embassy in, say, Benghazi, could be charged, but not the producers of the film itself.

The rioters who say that the film is inciting them to riot remind me of the woman/man who abused her/his husband/wife and then his nasty comments made her/him do it.

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #225)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 10:19 AM

244. Alas, at least to me this is about LIMITS TO FREE SPEECH

Not this film...the OP asked if there was a federal law in question after I showed him the Montana law. Indeed there is a code, a series of them actually, concerning incitement...

Hey at least you did not throw wiki at me when presented with actual U.S Code.



There are very real legal limits to speech in his country already. Of course, whn people confuse what it is to begin with, well frustrating, but hell, not surprising.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #144)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:11 AM

240. That movie insults a religion, but I have not heard that it incites to riot.

The Montana statute quoted above narrowly defines inciting to riot:

The act or conduct may not include the mere oral or written advocacy of ideas or expression of belief that does not urge the commission of an act of immediate violence.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #240)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 10:53 AM

245. There are complications

if the riot was in oh Montana though, you could not use it... due to the fact that US laws lagg well behind social media.

But let's forget all the complications with international customary law and all that. Let's assume you had a riot, killing a group of people, after a person had an inflammatory film on social media in Billings Montana... sooner or later, a good aggressive DA, will have to go there, and settle this with PRECEDENT.

My preference is FEDERAL.

But, but, but... no buts, incitement to a riot is NOT protected speech.

And people who believe there are NO LIMITS whatsoever, go get a copy of the AP manual for journalists, a short read into the LAW that pertains to news gathering, and yes FREEDOM OF THE PRESS... will quickly disabuse you of that. No sorry, I am not free to libel or slander anybody in a paper.

As I have said it before, it is not absolute. But of course when people think that ASKING YOU TUBE to remove this, is a limit of speech, and that their BUSINESS DECISION NOT TO do it, well that is a problem.

Yup skinner can take away all my rights to post on this site and there is nothing LEGALLY I can do about it, nor is it a violation of my freedom of speech. Any court will laugh me out of there, since last time I checked this is a PRIVATE SITE. But we are to the point when people really do not know what freedom of speech is... they think they know, but from the evidence, not really.

Hey, at least only one person threw at me the very authoritative wikipedia, when presented with U.S Code, that was the point I went, I truly give up.

By the way these are real examples of suppression of speech.

When the U.S Postmaster General (A US AGENCY) refused to deliver an issue of the Woman Rebel in 1913, that is suppression of speech. You had a US GOVERNMENT agency refusing to carry speech they disagreed with

http://historymatters.gmu.edu/d/5084/

The First and Second Red Scare could and were defended for violation of free speech. It was just... government agencies.

I do not expect people to know this any longer either.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:49 PM

41. To say that you were 'wildly' misunderstood

Would be an understatement.

I do think - not unlike the Right - you being purposefully misrepresented.

The laws you site that exist in other countries are reasonable.

And there is reason to think about such restrictions here.

'Good Speech' meant to counter act Hate Speech - speech meant to incite violence - fails too often.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #41)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:57 PM

48. Who Gets To Judge?

Is calling a woman a slut hate speech and potentially actionable?

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #48)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:31 PM

74. This isn't the Great Unknown.

The OP sites other countries that are working pretty well with the kinds of regulations that can make up Speech that disrupts society.

Did you agree with Citizens United?
I didn't - and I would welcome rules that diminish it or even abolish it.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #74)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:40 PM

78. +1 & I resist the assumption that we are incapable of doing that reasonably so we must'nt do it in

any degree whatsoever.

Sigh . . .

zero sum thinking

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Response to patrice (Reply #78)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:46 PM

85. What Infringements On Free Speech Beside Those Established By Case Law Would You Be Comfortable With

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #85)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:01 PM

99. I'd like to see those "established by case law" more widely considered, relative to new technologies

& empirical traits of actual persons, not just assuming that the traits assumed when the 1st Amendment was written, and whatever subsequent case law developed after that, are authentic.

Why does this seem so unreasonable relative to the powers established by Citizens' United?

How long can we expect Citizens' United to be the law of the land?

Do we have that kind of time to solve certain biases in "our" communication systems?

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Response to patrice (Reply #78)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:20 PM

113. Nicely said.

It's the same old "perfection is the enemy of vast improvement" crap that we hear far to often, to justify REALLY bad public policy.

IE: We can't keep deadly weapons out of the hands of murderers or even register them because ____________. (pick your absurd excuse)

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Response to 99Forever (Reply #113)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:32 PM

117. Paternalism. "People are bad. They are dumb, so they can't grow. Everything should be defined or not

from above and delivered to the people who are incapable of experimenting and learning about themselves and applying what they learn, because they can't change."

Everything ends up being about power, instead of people's life experiences and what works or doesn't.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #74)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:48 PM

175. Oh, REALLY? You mean like the UK, that censors articles about the royals because they'd be offended?

THOSE laws?

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Response to xchrom (Reply #41)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:12 PM

129. Thank you xchrom!

I have been shocked reading the posts on this article that mischaracterize my writing, accuse me of things that I did not say, ridicule me and make technically minor "gotcha" points -- the same garbage tactics are used by the right-wingers all the time. I *thought* that I would get a reasoned discussion when I did my post, but instead I'm finding a lot of left-wing loonies who would line up nicely with the right-wing loonies I have come to know and love. The laws in those other countries ARE reasonable. Their discussion is more informed. They do not allow maniacs with an agenda to pervert the political discussion with lies and propaganda. Why can't the overly zealous first amendment defenders posting on this article take a step back, maybe grab a beer or a puff (or both), and just chill long enough to give it some reasoned thinking? I'm hoping they will.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #129)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:45 PM

153. Careful now... Cause I'm a Left Wing Loonie.

But that doesn't mean I don't think things shouldn't come under reasonable scrutiny and rational judgement.

You didn't propose to abolish 1a - far from it.

What youre talking about isn't new - no re-inventing the wheel - taking what exists and applying it to us.

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Response to xchrom (Reply #153)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:47 PM

156. I'm a left-wing loonie too -- I use the term lovingly

Just trying to jazz it up a little. Thanks again for your reasoned contribution to the discussion.

On Edit: I meant, "left-wing loonie". Proud of it. Too big a hurry to get out of here.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:54 PM

46. I'd worry more about the deliberate misinterpretation of the 2A going on.

 

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 03:59 PM

50. We've tryed this before

Look up the alien and sedition act. It didn't last because it was a bad idea.

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Response to Progressive dog (Reply #50)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:06 PM

56. And it led to the first Slander and Libel laws, some of which are still in the books

While the OP might not realize some of the limits he'd like to see ALREADY EXIST... before I disappear, I got work to do, this is not an absolute freedom or right, none of them are.

I might add, I have no idea why I am violating the advise of a lawyer who no longer bothers with his neighbors, let alone perfectly good strangers.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #56)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:22 PM

67. No one is defending lying about others as free speech

But truth was also banned under the Sedition act. This act must have retro-actively put Slander and Libel laws in place, since they predate the Sedition act. The Sedition act banned telling the truth about certain government officials when the truth harmed their reputations. It excluded VP Thomas Jefferson from the officials protected. This is will happen if we allow categories of speech to be banned.

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Response to Progressive dog (Reply #67)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:34 PM

75. I am familiar with the history

but by own post, there are actually limits to free speech...

Which of course the OP, like most posters on this site, believe are non-existent.

Are they like I don't know, can't mention Nazis in Germany? No.

But to say it is absolute, it is just poppy cock.

Now back to environmental law, it is far less contentious, at least on the intertubes.

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Response to nadinbrzezinski (Reply #75)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:19 PM

132. Not quite

I got my degree in Journalism and Public Relations. I think we may have studied a little bit about the First Amendment. Liable, slander, other limitations on free speech, I know what those are. If I did not clearly enunciate that in my initial write-up, then it is only because I gave myself just one hour to write it and post it -- certainly, on re-write, i would have made that point because it is a VERY good one. All of these first amendment fanatics posting about how awful it would be limit freedom of expression also fail to recognize that there are already limits to freedom of expression that are accepted, reasonable and enforceable. As a country, we COULD ratchet down on the hate speech, the lies and the false propaganda -- also reasonable -- and everybody (except the Rush Limbaughs and Glen Becks, et al) would benefit.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #132)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 10:03 PM

201. That is ok, and welcome to the club

my degrees are in history with a poli sci minor. Guess what I am doing these days to supplement income? Oh yeah, field reporter.

For all those who think it is absolute, go get a copy of the AP manual... it will quickly disabuse them of that notion.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:01 PM

51. Sorry, but I'm willing to die for our freedom of expression...

 

If there are animals around the world, that don't understand how to properly behave when a book, a cartoon or a movie "offends" them - then too bad!!!

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Response to liberallibral (Reply #51)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:28 PM

71. Then maybe you should ...

venture right over to Benghazi and try explaining it to them. If you're willing to die, you know.

I think you may have a limited perception of what the problem is. For people who have lived for generations, if not millennia, under regimes in which if you said the wrong thing you were imprisoned, tortured, or worse ... it's difficult to understand why the American government would "allow" this. To many of them, failure to suppress such hateful speech is an explicit endorsement of it. It becomes the government's own speech and own policy in their eyes. And if you were them, it might make sense. Just as the (nonviolent) reaction they are having doesn't make sense to you.

But: Will you die for Glenn Beck or Terry Jones? I wouldn't. Honestly, I wouldn't.





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Response to frazzled (Reply #71)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:45 PM

82. How about we stay right here in America

 

and fight those in America who want to take away our rights?

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #82)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:23 PM

115. Is posting something on YouTube a right?

No, it is not. These people were free to make their filthy film, but YouTube did not have to accept it, under its terms of service; and they certainly didn't have to continue to display it. They are a private entity that, just like DU, can take down any speech they want.

No one has taken away any American's rights here. The government has nothing to do with it. (Unless they've broken a federal law, which they might have, they have no one to face but their own failed consciences.) I don't know why you people are in such a dander about free speech, and are more interested in protecting this atrocity than in condemning it. It's your right to condemn it in no uncertain terms, under the First Amendment, but I see very few trying to do so.

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Response to frazzled (Reply #115)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 09:12 PM

195. Youtube refused to take it down. So there.

 

The movie was an exercise in sheer idiocy. You happy?

The guy had a first amendment right to make the movie and distribute it through whatever channel would allow him to. And Youtube hasn't taken it down, even after the PRESIDENT asked them to.

I know that offends you, but... tough. Sorry, that's the First Amendment at work.

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Response to Zalatix (Reply #195)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 12:40 AM

207. No, that is a corporation

A private entity, making a business decision.

Freedom of speech only pertains to THE GOVERNMENT AND IT'S INTERACTIONS WITH YOU AS A PRIVATE CITIZEN.

The decision has buckus to do with freedom of speech.

They can be asked, nicely, they can say no. Show me the lawsuit by DOJ...you can't, because there is no LEGAL CASE.

This is why discussing this is useless. If you believe that private companies are bound by freedom of speech, well then.

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Response to frazzled (Reply #71)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:54 PM

95. Yep, I'll fight and even DIE for those I disgree with, such as Glen Beck, etc....

 

It's called FREEDOM... Maybe YOU should go to Benghazi, if you can't handle it...

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Response to frazzled (Reply #71)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:29 PM

138. So when they riot because the US allows gay marriage

Last edited Sat Sep 15, 2012, 10:57 PM - Edit history (1)

which we know is a capital offense in many Arab countries what shall we do?. Does the Arab mob get a veto over every one of my rights or just some?

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Response to hack89 (Reply #138)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:19 PM

188. bingo this seems to be were its all going

 

do we really need to set up our society to make a bunch of nuts living in 900ad happy,

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:05 PM

55. LOL!

That is all!

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:08 PM

57. Like any ideology, an absolute formulated as "We need more speech, not less" seems to be based

upon an abstracted value, which in this case could be characterized as how more freedom and more anarchy will net out in progression NOT regression, a wild-ass assumption abstracted from, to all intents and purposes, an infinite number of factors.

If I understand correctly, it is assumed that more speech will serve the cause of truth and is, therefore, justified by the value of reality itself.

I think that could be true, if we have enough time and luck to evolve and develop long enough that the best forms and apprehensions are actually distilled from any and all errors. What is the likelihood that we have that kind of time and luck?

I consider it more likely that we do not have enough time for "more speech" to progress our understanding to that point and I'd be willing to bet that the unlimited "freedom of expression"* cohort doesn't expect that either, so their position is predicated on something other than an ultimate priority placed upon truth.

Isn't this hypothesis supported by the fact that the failure to recognize how one's "freedom of expression" may very possibly not be derived from freedom at all, but rather that what one desires to express is more likely an expression of one type or another that prioritizes something other than liberating truth and is inherently, thus, very possibly an expression of one's own slavery to one's own biases? Could "freedom of expression" just simply be a drive toward power? - especially given the likelihood of the limitations that time places upon our evolution toward authentic truths?

This is my problem with the unlimited "freedom of expression" position: 1. Given the limitations imposed by time, unlimited "freedom of expression" appears to ignore the very likely fact that freedom of expression can result in regressions that oppress progress toward the most truth for the most people. 2. Since truth is, apparently, not the objective, the only other obvious goal is power to assert one's own biases, i.e. fascism in one degree or another.

Failure to recognize that words are not the same thing as what words only refer to causes people to mistake words for The Truth and, hence, lose the very validity and reliability that they claim in those words and, since this is an unavoidable problem, I wouldn't mind people doing this in the name of "freedom of expression" if they'd honestly recognize what is that they are doing up front and straight up as part of their expression, instead of, at least to my mind, claiming power that is not theirs to claim.

*It's a little false to talk about "freedom of expression" under a Constitutional Amendment, the 1st, that is limited to speech that is not equal to "shouting fire in a darkened crowded theater, with missing or poorly marked exits", that is, speech which increases the possibility of danger to people who could reasonably expect otherwise, i.e. less danger, is NOT legal in the USA.

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Response to patrice (Reply #57)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:00 PM

98. "assert one's own biases, i.e. fascism in one degree or another"

oh, so that's what fascism is. i guess when teenagers call their parents fascists they are using the term correctly.

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Response to BOG PERSON (Reply #98)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:10 PM

106. The will to power is fundamental to survival. It's agendas, more but usually way less, honestly

communicated that can be a problem to those who are unaware of them.

Some degree of bias is inherent to humanity; anything other than the autonomic processes of you brain and nervous system would not be possible without a position of somesort. The questions are about what one does with one's own POV.

I want people to actively admit that fact.

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Response to patrice (Reply #57)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 06:35 PM

279. Here is the problem

It is true that free speech can produce some ugly stuff, and that fascists can use it to gain power, however, the problem lies with the fact that restricted speech can also serve fascists as well.

MLK, Margaret Sanger, Susan B anthony, all were accused by the right wing of being offensive, of trying to start violence for the sake of poltical power. What remains true is that any speech that threatens any power structure will be seen as offensive, and therefore, needing to be repressed. You say "freedom of expression" may be a drive towards power, considering the fact that every freethinker in history, everyone who has made "progress towards the truth" has been deemed a threat, harmful, evil, can you also consider that "suprressing offensive speech" is also a will to power, and perhaps an even more obvious one? Read about how people genuinely thought that ideas such as giving the right to vote to women, or blacks, or that the earth revolved around the sun, or that printed books could be good, read about hwo sincere, well meaning people thought these ideas would cause harm, to say nothing of those who did have a stronger "will to power."

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:09 PM

58. Perhaps you could be the first cabinet head of the Ministry of Truth.

Doesn't that sound nice. Just rolls off the tongue, so to speak.

Feh!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ministry_of_Truth

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:11 PM

59. Imagine DU If That Law Was On The Books During The Bush* Administration

More than half of this site would be wearing prison garb.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:14 PM

60. You know, you could always move to Iran.

Seems like you'd be a lot more comfortable there.

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Response to name not needed (Reply #60)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:35 PM

145. Thanks for your contribution

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #145)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:49 PM

176. Fits quite nicely with the OP.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:14 PM

61. Under your proposed limits to our rights, I assume you would allow preachers

of all faiths to speak horrid shit against gay people because they claim their various gods or holy books command them to spread lies and hate against us? Because religion makes it all ok, right?
And you know, the Islamic media has much culpability in these current events as well. Their own TV hate mongers showed clips of this unknown piece of video and claimed it was made by Jews and shown on US national television. What of them? Why do their nations allow them to say that stuff? Why don't they make them stop it? They lie, they inflame, and it bothers me that all of you folks who want to limit US rights do not even mention the media in the region where the violence is actually happening. Not a word about them. To me, that makes the commentary about US law dubious as all hell.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #61)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:29 PM

73. ??? OP seems VERY much to be saying the opposite of what you think:

We must re-evaluate our positions on freedom of expression in America. Nowhere else in the Western world do we find the Rush Limbaughs, the Glen Becks, the Fox News channels, the Media for Christ companies -- all of them dedicated to spreading hate and lies -- all of them simply exercising their "First Amendment" rights. Only in America do these subversive individuals and groups operate with impunity under the umbrella of "First Amerdment Rights".


emphasis added

Did you read the whole OP?

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Response to patrice (Reply #73)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:30 PM

139. I note the OP refuses to respond, and no patrice the OP does not at all address

what I mention. I asked about media in the region, and about religions libeling LGBT people. I directly asked if the OP intended religious people to continue to have the right to call gay people sinners, dogs, pigs, etc and the OP decidedly fell silent. This vague bs being foisted needs specifics to back it up and I asked for them. The OP had no reply, and yours was no germain to my post in any way at all.
A portion of my point being that the same freedoms that protect one person's speech protect another's religion, and the expression of that religion. Is the OP willing to see a supression of religious hate speech, or is the idea that folks who say 'god' first get to call me names and I am not allowed to respond to them? A law to protect Fred Phelps from the press and from citizens who do not approve of him? That's what I am asking the OP. And I'm getting no response at all.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #139)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:49 PM

159. I'm not sure I understand how you get that from OP. Maybe one thing we could talk about would

be: Standards don't NEED to be religiously defined, so religion would have no greater preference than any other humans.

Ethics, in general, is thought to be a rational secular effort to understand how best to treat one another.

You probably have also seen cases made for how atheists don't need religion or spirituality in order to be ethical people. They can arrive at completely rational principles that function the same as religious morals.

What I'm suggesting here is that people could discover their own standards, amongst themselves, for public "speech", kind of like we do on this board. Those standards could be derived from their own lives, not from abstract bullshit ideologies, just from what works and doesn't work in their own experiences and what works refers to how anyone has a right to not be harmed by the speech of others.

Maybe there's something I'm not thinking about here, because I assume that it's the sort of thing that would be worked out in actual situations.

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Response to patrice (Reply #73)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:37 PM

147. OP is very much saying the opposite of what Bluenorthwest is saying

Take a break, Bluenorthwest, read what I wrote again, then get back to me.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #147)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:46 PM

154. Well why not simply respond to the questions you are being asked?

That would be the respectful thing to do on a discussion board, discuss. Yet I ask, and you say 'go take a nap'. That says it all.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #154)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:19 PM

167. Responding

I wasn't ignoring anybody. I was out. And I have to jet out again pretty soon. Don't take too much offense to that "go take a nap" jibe, Bluenorthwest, others say that to me sometimes and I just laugh it off, no big deal.

But if you read what I wrote again, then try to reconcile what I actually wrote with what you wrote, I think you'll see some glaring discrepancies.

Just remember, we're all on the same side here. My concern is for the extreme cesspool of disinformation that is our political atmosphere, and for the susceptible individuals in our society who are radicalized by the extremist in our midst hiding behind free expression to further their destructive goals.

Do you remember anybody being gunned down in America lately, and do you remember any discussion on this and other boards blaming Glen Beck, Rush Limbaugh and/or others right-wing shock jocks for contributing to the mental instability of the shooter?

Of course you do.

People are dying, getting killed, gunned down, here in America and around the world. And IF you ask the question "how did this happen", and follow the trail of breadcrumbs, all too often you find your way back to the source of the lies, hate speech and radical encitement that begins under the cover of "free speech".

Think about it.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #167)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 09:23 PM

197. You did not reply to a single question I asked you, nor to any point I raised.

What a rude person you are. You come and say you want to destroy my rights and when I ask you in what way you say shut up. Then you preach.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #167)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:43 AM

211. James Holmes Was Set Off Because Of The Batman Franchise

Should we ban the Dark Night Returns from being shown?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:23 PM

68. Wrong. Other peoples in other places reaction to our Freedom of expression is.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:27 PM

70. Would this bit of unvarnished mockery of religion be unacceptable in your new country?

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Response to Vinnie From Indy (Reply #70)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:47 PM

86. Would you care if you were the subject of that mockery? What if that mockery progressed to

a degree that affected your job opportunities?

Sometimes this isn't so much about the qualities of a given piece, but more about the number of instances of same.

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Response to patrice (Reply #86)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:57 PM

96. We Have Laws On The Book That Ban Discrimination On The Basis Of Race, Religion, And National Origin

And will eventually be extended to gender orientation.


That seems like a better remedy than curtailing someone's free speech.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #96)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:22 PM

114. You and I probably differ on that point of "curtail". I think it is possible to say almost anything

if you can figure out how to say it - and - there are many MANY different ways to say the same thing, with many MANY different connotative and associative EFFECTS. There are way more options than many people think/pretend(?) there are. This is what law is about.

So, I don't think the limitations have to be as bad as lots of people claim. However, these facts about language probably do not apply to those who don't have the same tools that others have and there are indeed things that whatever connotative and associative effects are claimed they could so limited, so unlikely, so idiosyncratic that even if they are claimed, those effects should probably be ir-relevant to certain types of denotative meanings. Violence is an obvious example of this; I cringe every time I see or hear "I'll kill you" no matter what anyone says they mean by that.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:43 PM

81. No, the solution is always more speech

We could disapprove of this movie. Too many people think Freedom of Speech means they have to defend it. It does not mean we have to defend everything. We can criticize this movie and the guy who made it. That's free speech, too. We can assure people in the Middle East that most of us don't approve. Same way they told us they didn't approve of 911. We have got to stop letting the worst among us define our peoples.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:45 PM

83. Blame the victim? How about blaming the troglodytes who think killing is O.K.? nt

 

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:51 PM

88. Canadian or UK style restrictions would not preclude the filming or posting of Innocence of Muslims

First let's ignore Germany as a model for free speech. They have a unique history that currently forces them to always err on the side of avoiding religious and racial hatred. Many Germans do not feel free to express themselves not only because of laws but because of a huge social stigma against anything that could be remotely construed as religious or racial hatred.

As for the UK and Canadian laws, we have already started restricting free speech in some states in similar ways through anti-bullying legislation. Eventually the Supreme Court will rule on these laws and it is unclear where we will end up.
Regardless, making a movie that mocks a religion by portraying its prophet (or its God or ancient religious leaders) as a fool, womanizer and pedophile does not meet the standard in Canada or the UK of inciting religious hatred or inciting a riot. And it will not and should not be banned in the US. To meet the standard of restricted speech, the incitement has to be much more direct such as falsely claiming, after the disappearance of several children, that a particular religious group is killing them in ritual sacrifices. That type of speech has civil remedies in the US and may have criminal remedies in the future.

But if we ever start prosecuting people for offensiveness and ill will toward others, the government suddenly has the power to prosecute anyone who openly speaks against it. For instance, if you were involved in a peaceful protest against US involvement in a war, that could easily be construed as being offensive or showing ill will toward our soldiers who volunteered to fight.

If we prosecute people for riling up a crowd to anger or for angering some opposing racial or religious group, then Malcolm X rots in prison long before he has an impact. And if Malcolm X languishes in prison, then it is easy to see how MLK could be there as well.

So while there may be some room for minor tweaks in free speech rights. The status quo seems fairly close to where it should be.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:52 PM

89. Not a good idea

Having lived in other countries who don't exactly have the freedom of speech I can tell you that in many countries citizens don't dare voice any dissent against their governments for fear of their lives and that most of these violent demonstrations against Americans are mostly rage at their own governments. It's safe to take it out on American Embassies because we tolerate it as long as no one is killed. Burning the American flag is mostly a redirected action because they can't vent their rage at their own governments.

And I don't trust people like the NeoCons, who are now actively working as advisers to Romney and who think torture is Constitutional to be trusted with anything having to do with our freedom of speech. Sooner or later they will be in power again. Let's not help them destroy everything we are.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:53 PM

91. Is it time to burn our RR, blues, hiphop and rap records yet?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:53 PM

93. excellent.

 

those countries mentioned that have limits on speech also have universal health care.

there is a correlation, I think.

Americans have been weaned on the 'we are tough and we getter done and we're tougher than the rest of those other socialist weaklings'. We got 'freedoms' no one else in the world has. Ain't we special. And like you point out, they also get your Glen Becks and Ratfuckers like Rush who cause great negative to the well being of americans and work against the very things that other countries consider basic human rights, such as health care.

It's all nuts. Time for all of America to wake up and forget about all that John Wayne shit.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #93)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:02 PM

101. What Would Have Happened If Attorney General Ashcroft Had The Power Of Those Laws Behind Him?

.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #101)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:05 PM

103. Exactly.

 

It seems to be an argument that one's side should have freedom of speech but that there should be less freedom of speech for the opposition.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #101)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:47 PM

120. I'm not sure exactly but

 

would there even be an Ashcroft if there weren't the Limbaugh's and the liar haters for all those years manipulating minds and opening a passage for those creeps?

If you are saying that DU would be limited in free speech (eg in Bush era where there was so much anger and rage here) what we said here was not incitement for violence or any of that sort. The admin is clear about that.
Maybe I misunderstand your question tho.

I can't see a negative towards hate speech and stoking up violence being dealt with differently that free speech. What exactly does Canada and the UK and others lack because we do have those rules? Do you think we are muffled and less free, or something? On the contrary, especially towards our politcians, we are scathing and relentless in ways Americans are not.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #120)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:28 PM

137. Limbaugh Didn't Invent Nutters

Barry Goldwater got 38% of the vote when Limbaugh was in diapers and George Wallace carried five states when he was learning his alphabet.

There are already laws on the book against inciting a riot. What the original poster advocates goes much further than that.

If I want to make a film of Willard Romney having coitus with his dozen wives in Heaven , some under the age of majority, which is what some LDS leaders believe I should have the right to do so. The OP's proposed laws would take away that right.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #93)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:38 PM

148. If Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck are the price for the freedom to speak freely,

then so be it. I support their right to speak as they do 100%.

I don't think there is any correlation at all, unless you can prove one.

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Response to NYC Liberal (Reply #148)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:52 AM

212. then explain why the US is in such a sorry state compared to others.

 

explain why hate speech like those do is making anything better for anyone except harvesting more haters and making a climate of hate.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #212)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:47 PM

263. You think all things are equal, except for that?

There are many, many variables.

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Response to Whisp (Reply #93)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:42 PM

151. Totally agree, Whisp

It is the ultra wealthy and very powerful who hide behind the curtain and pull the strings who benefit the most by the lies, hate, false accusations and incitement. They push the buttons, pull the strings, and flood America with lies so thick that huge segments of the population are manipulated and incited to extreme points of view, all of which serves the hidden powers and their secret ulterior motives very well. I think you hit the nail right on the head.

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Response to Jessy169 (Reply #151)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:48 PM

158. the herd is fattened, and now we see the the powerful feed on them.

 

It took a long time of conditioning and making the climate right. But it was done.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:53 PM

94. Some would argue that our freedom of expression

has allowed the Republicans to kill their party. That said, I would simply suggest some form of the fairness doctrine be thought long and hard about. Otherwise, those who aren't mentally balanced (which might, in fact, include a few names we all know) are allowed a forum to spew filth forth unabated, all the while creating, re-enforcing, or perhaps introducing such traits into their listeners.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 04:58 PM

97. Defining what constitutes "hate speech" would be a nightmarish, never-ending debate.

 



Does mocking Christianity = "hate speech?" Does mocking Creationists = "hate speech?" It seems to me like you're only thinking in terms of "People should not be allowed to mock homosexuals, atheists, etc." without considering all the ways it could apply the opposite way as well.


In a nation of 300 million, getting the sort of restriction that you're proposing, passed, would be a nightmarish debate that could easily last a decade or longer with no resolution. It would make almost every other political debate seem mild by comparison.


This post seems to be driven by the idea that "My side should have the right of free speech, but my opponents should not."

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:01 PM

100. This is a completely misguided approach

The riots in the Middle East are not about a movie or a cartoon.

They are about intolerable conditions that young arabs see as being imposed upon them by an imperialist west. They believe that the US and Europe will never allow them to rise or achieve the kind of lifestyle that they see their counterparts in the west enjoying.

Given that, the slightest provocation ignites the powder keg. But to call the provocation the cause of the subsequent events is misguided.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:08 PM

105. Hate speech laws are tempting

 

But the fruit they yield would not be helpful in this country. Call me silly, but I'm an optimistt who believes that in the long run, good ideas will prevail ovr bad ones.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:11 PM

108. codswallop.

and sorry there is no redo beyond a Constitutional Amendment. And that's not happening. Nor ever will happen.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:12 PM

109. I don't think so.

I think it's the exploitation of free speech that's the culprit. Another term for that is demagoguery.

You point to perfect examples of such:

In Canada, under section 319, it is illegal to publicly incite hatred against people based on their colour, race, religion, ethnic origin, and sexual orientation, except where the statements made are true or are made in good faith.

<...>

We ask our brave soldiers now to fight and die for the constitutional right of Media for Christ and it's anti-government right-wing activists to spread their lies and hatred around the world. This is a travesty.

We must re-evaluate our positions on freedom of expression in America. Nowhere else in the Western world do we find the Rush Limbaughs, the Glen Becks, the Fox News channels, the Media for Christ companies -- all of them dedicated to spreading hate and lies -- all of them simply exercising their "First Amendment" rights. Only in America do these subversive individuals and groups operate with impunity under the umbrella of "First Amerdment Rights".

We need to take a hard look at our freedom of expression. We need a RE-DO -- something along the lines of what Canada, United Kingdom and Germany have. Otherwise, we will remain victims of those who, under the protection of the First Amendment, are free to infect the nation and the world with their sordid and devisive communications, to the detriment of us all.


Hate crimes are are also illegal in this country. Hate speech and actions have also been considered crimes.

Ex-Rutgers student convicted of bullying gay roommate starts jail term
http://www.cnn.com/2012/05/31/justice/new-jersey-dharun-ravi/index.html

The cure for demagoguery, engaged in by the likes of "Rush Limbaughs, the Glen Becks, the Fox News channels, the Media for Christ companies," could be a simple as a Fairness Doctrine. It does not require removing protections granted by the First Amendment.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 05:47 PM

119. FAIL. Religious nut jobs are killing us and you're trying to further empower them.

 

Words don't kill people, crazy people kill people.

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Response to trouble.smith (Reply #119)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:15 PM

166. Nope.

People who find themselves oppressed and without options do desperate things.

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Response to abumbyanyothername (Reply #166)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:48 PM

193. religious zealots do stupid things for stupid reasons

 

It is true that many of these zealots are oppressed and without options, some much more so than others of course i.e. women; however, that doesn't make this a desperate act by repressed people, it remains a depraved act comitted by mind fucked religious zealots. imo

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:05 PM

125. Uh, card carrying ACLU member here

and I'd rather have these hateful people right out in the open, thanks, so we know who to investigate when they start killing people.

What I would like is enforcement of truth in advertising laws. In other words, if a broadcast or print medium wants to call itself "news," it has to pass at least 95% of fact checking and use neutral language. The 5% is to cover breaking news where all the facts are not known yet.

Pox News would then necessarily become Pox Propaganda or clean up its act, along with the big 3 who have their own problems with lies of omission and loaded language. Beck's show would be Beck's Conspiracy Hour.

Leave it all out there. Just let people know what they're deciding to pay attention to. Don't let liars and propagandists cloak themselves in the "news" label.

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Response to Warpy (Reply #125)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:27 PM

135. But what about the right of those people not to be killed? Why is that less of a right than

so-called "free" speech?

I should say I don't consider much of what we are talking about here to be actually free speech. It's stuff that is subjected to all kinds of slavery: hate, bigotry, economic brainwashing . . . and characterized as free because it's what some entity WANTS to say, not because it is authentically free. If it were authentically free, would it be so enslaving to others?

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Response to patrice (Reply #135)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:40 PM

149. Manson said he was told to kill by the Bible and the Beatles. Son of Sam said a dog

told him to kill people. Do you think dogs, Bibles and Beatles should be blamed for the deaths the murderers did because the murderers said dogs, Bibles and Beatles?
The people who were murdered were murdered by murderers. The Koran says to take one life is to destroy the entire world. I agree with that.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #149)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:07 PM

163. I operate on the basic assumptions of rational empiricism, which include the fact that

any given statement of relationship, in this case cause and effect, applies in one degree or another to whomever a given subject is and, if we look at large groups of subjects, there will be those few of whom the cause-and-effect is strongly characteristic, there will be those few to whom the cause-and-effect is strongly ir-relevant, and by far most of the subjects will be characterized by degrees between strong and weak for those traits. That is, most people are mixes of the factors that result in the cause-and-effect, with the big majority at least theoretically clustered around 50:50, that is, situation and choice figure more often than not.

So, Manson and Son of Sam, I guess, would fall in the range of strong suggestibility, i.e. a tiny fraction of the over-all population of subjects and, therefore, not a basis for good FUNCTIONAL policy.

What to do about an environment that puts them, and those like them, at risk of horribly victimizing some innocent people? Look at them as something other than just the targets of the cause-and-effect, in this case, unlimited "free expression". Create communities that at least have a chance of recognizing what is going on with such people and responding to them in a way that reduces their dysfunctionality proactively, before problems, as much as possible. Don't cripple everyone's "free" expression, because that would be BAD for everyone else, and almost assuredly NOT work for your psychopaths anyway.

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Response to patrice (Reply #163)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:00 PM

183. Please try to demonstrate cause and effect in this situation.

There is no way this film "caused" the murders of anyone! If anything, the people's belief that it is a valid reason to go crazy and murder people because SOMEONE ELSE depicted the prophet is what "caused" the murders. What caused that belief?

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Response to MNBrewer (Reply #183)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:19 PM

187. I was responding to a post saying that Manson and Son of Sam claimed cause and effect in their cases

I consider it rather unlikely myself, probably relevant only to pathological individuals and not even all of those.

My personal opinion of this film is that there are a very very few (perhaps pathological) people uninformed enough and temperamentally disposed to be set off by such a film and even then whether they'd do murder and violence is an entirely different question.

Most of the behavior we are seeing, IMO, doesn't have that much to do with the film itself. It's very likely an excuse. There are other agendas at work in this situation. For example, re the German embassy, Germany is calling the tune on austerity policies all across Europe.

&

Am I the only person troubled by the fact that this is happening in a part of the world that is the new home to the ex-patriot war profiteers known as Xe? Maybe their subsidies are running out and someone over there wants some "production".

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Response to patrice (Reply #187)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:47 PM

290. Keep up instead of just spouting. David Berkowitz recanted that claim long ago.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #290)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:49 PM

301. I was speaking hypothetically in response to a claim made by someone else. And, if you'll

re-read what I said, you'll see that I left open the possibility that the claim was invalid.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #290)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:58 PM

303. You do understand that the rational methods to which I refer only yield possibilities?

not the absolutes you appear to be assuming, only probabilities, which, no matter how strong a given relationship between factors might be, no matter how reliable the probability, there is no claim (especially without more information) that the next instance of whatever necessarily falls within that probability, that is, it could be a phenomenon that does not fit the prediction.

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Response to patrice (Reply #135)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:55 PM

179. The hateful crap will always be with us in one form or another

and driving it underground is the best anti speech laws can possibly accomplish.

Again, I'd rather have the scumbuckets right out in the open, where we can keep an eye on them. Just give us a little more truth in advertising, thanks.

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Response to patrice (Reply #135)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:45 PM

289. Take it up with the violent thugs. Oh, I forgot; they're "sensitive."

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #289)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:02 PM

305. Yeah, drug dealers have no part in the crimes committed for whatever high they propagate. nt

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #289)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:05 PM

306. Are some people born certain ways that limit their choices or not? nt

Last edited Sun Sep 16, 2012, 10:05 PM - Edit history (1)

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:09 PM

127. Nope. Sorry. We let the courts decide when speech has gone so far as to actually harm someone.

If there is no demonstrable harm, you just have to suck it up and deal with it.

If you allow overt censorship, the censors are always going to take sides. And the way tings are, that generally means they will side with the RW.

Nope. NO WAY.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:11 PM

128. The religious RW in this country would like nothing more than to limit free speech. n/t

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:16 PM

130. People are always offended by new truths

The video being blamed for all the violence (erroneous in the case of the Ambassador's and other staffers' deaths) was merely a disrespectful treatment of the prophet. It was not hate speech.

First, it is pretext and not the reason for the Libyan murders, which were clearly an inside job, and probably revenge for Gaddafi's death.

Second, if you allow nutcases to determine what is acceptable speech, the world will become an insane asylum.

More than 80% of Egyptians believe that a Muslim who changes religion or says that he doesn't believe in Islam should be executed. That's their idea of civil rights.

It is not hate speech to point out that I think our idea of civil rights is better, and that we evolved our idea of civil rights as a result of free speech which changed the mind of the public. Our culture is entirely dependent upon freedom of expression and freedom of religion, and theirs is entirely dependent upon the opposite.

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Response to Yo_Mama (Reply #130)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:37 PM

146. But freedom is not served by what we are doing. Regressive feedback loops get going and

reduce freedom over-all.

Just because some- one/thing is allowed to say something, doesn't mean that what they are saying is a free expression. Probably more often than not, it's an ignorant expression or a biased expression, posing as truth, which then oppresses the freedom and less ignorant, less biased truths of others.

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Response to patrice (Reply #146)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:29 PM

169. The point of allowing people to speak freely

is that historically speaking, the authorities/masses of people did not know what was true and what was not.

There was a time in Europe when claiming that Jesus was not God would get you burned to death (it happened even among the Calvinists). Claiming that the Pope wasn't infallible, publishing the Bible in common language, different interpretations of the Bible - all CRIMES.

People believed in witches flying around on broomsticks. People believed in the divine right of Kings. People in this country tried to ban the abolitionist movement (in the South). There were violent acts against women's suffrage demonstrators. People believed that giving women the right to vote would just destroy society.

Our constitution recognizes that governments have frequently been the agency for suppressing truths and harassing people based on their beliefs instead of their criminal actions, and so when we created the national government the people themselves placed a limit upon the government - it could not establish a church, stop people from practicing a religion, stop people from gathering and engaging in political speech, or stop people from saying AND PUBLISHING what they wanted.

For the government to withdraw the protection of the law from someone who had engaged in speech of which the government did not approve would be to make a mockery of the Bill of Rights. And it is also explicitly forbidden - all have equal rights under the law.

That video in no way oppresses the freedom of others. We mock our presidents, our justices, our religious figures. Political/religious satires have long been recognized under our law as being allowable speech.

Not only is it unconstitutional to do as you suggest, it would be a terrible error. If it is wrong to criticize the prophet in Islam, it is much more wrong to criticize the Koran. So if I write here that no G_d I can believe in wants adulterous women stoned to death, and that anyone should be allowed to change their religion, have no religion, or disagree with all of the doctrine of their religion without being beaten, killed or otherwise harassed for it, I am insulting the Koran.

Sorry, it's all or nothing. I choose the "all", not because I think the video is good, or that it should have been made, but because criticism will always offend someone, and I trust no one to be the arbiter.

There was also a Muslim doctrine that the caliph was the representative of Muhammed, and so must not be criticized. You don't know what you are talking about.

Many modern Muslims do not believe in this totalitarian type of thing. To bow to those who do is to abandon the civil rights of the moderate Muslims as well.

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Response to patrice (Reply #146)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:46 PM

174. WHO will be the arbiter? You? Me? Oh, wait; it would be THE US SUPREME COURT, TYVM.

GOOD GOD ALMIGHTY. Tough s*** about some violent 6th C. men half-way around the world.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #174)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:28 PM

189. You assume that the only effective forms of control are external and, hence, hierarchical

and authoritarian. No wonder you fight that top-down oppressive stuff.

I am suggesting that people don't necessarily need that, especially since perfect laws for everything can't be written in the first place and would never work even if we tried.

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Response to patrice (Reply #189)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:44 PM

288. What? I'm SAYING that the US Supreme Court has ruled against the OP's restrictive concept.

When people like the OP and others herein suggest that speech must be restricted so as not to "incite" FOREIGNERS, there is something RADICALLY WRONG with their concept of the First Amendment!

Maybe THEY should be restricted. Oh, but it would never redound to THEM, they might say; THEY never express "hate."

Sure. Sure.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #288)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:28 PM

308. Why is it that so many people who are allegedly so interested in freedom almost never think in any

but externalized authoritarian models? what the Supreme Court should or shouldn't do . . .

See the flaw in thinking exclusively in those terms: the Supreme Court delivered a free speech oppressor known as Citizens' United. The prime proponent of freedom in this country, the ACLU, recognizes the impediment to free speech that Citizens' United is - AND - says nothing can be done about it, because a Constitutional amendment of a Constitutional amendment would be a crime against the Constitution.

Even if you take the position that EVENTUALLY freedom will outgrow the oppression created by Citizens' United, and other such regressors, you must admit that TIME is a huge factor in that assumption. There may not be enough time for valid adaptations to all of the regressions to evolve appropriate systems into functionalities beyond the slavery propagated by oppression. You have to assume that whatever functionality is lost to regression, at any given point, is not needed for progress and, hence, survival.

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Response to patrice (Reply #146)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:50 PM

291. You have an interesting defintion of "freedom." And of "free."

Are you an American, or are you giving us the viewpoint of someone living in a nation with restricted speech?

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #291)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:39 PM

298. Do you dispute that the post to which you are responding describes pretty much what is going on

in American media and politics?

wow.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #291)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:46 PM

300. Are you implying that the mere fact that some -one/thing expresses something because s/he/they WANT

to express something means that s/he/they are free and, hence, what s/he/they have expressed is a manifestation of freedom?

That seems a rather base criteria for freedom, to me.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:41 PM

150. If we're going to limit free speech, let's start with the people who want to get rid of it...

 

Anyone promoting exceptions to free speech should be jailed immediately.

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Response to Comrade_McKenzie (Reply #150)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:24 PM

168. Amen.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:43 PM

152. I'm Actually More Concerned About An Expansive Construction Of The Second Amendment

I am more concerned about getting a cap in my dome when I go to a 7-11 late at night than I am some clown calling me a hurtful name.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #152)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:48 PM

157. Then you'd be better served leaving the 2nd alone...

...and going after the actual root causes of violent crime. But that is another debate for another thread in another forum.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:53 PM

160. We do not have to change the First Amendment.

What we have to do is get people educated.
Only then will they be able to tell what is actual speech, what is hate speech, and what is propaganda.
If we limit speech, we open the door to censors, who will LEGALLY censor everything.
Don't believe the official story of 9/11, you're censored.
Don't believe that Bush actually won the 2000 election, you're censored.
Don't believe that Senator Wellstone's plane crash was an accident, you're censored.

I, for one do not want this. If we start to re-do our freedom of speech, eventually we will have none.

We have to get our people more educated so that they can tell what is real, and what is garbage.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 06:55 PM

161. Free expression is not the problem.

The problem is the abuse of that right. Using your freedom to impinge upon the lives and security of others is abuse of said right.

Take the broad example of bullying. Under the exact same logic being used by DU'ers to support this dehumanizing film, there's absolutely no issue with systemic verbal abuse of others, no matter the consequences of that abuse. Harass a kid until he hangs himself? Well, by the new logic of DU, that's the kid's fault, the harasser didn't hang him, how dare you impinge on the harasser's rights! The kid should have known to just ignore it!

Of course these DU'ers will cluck their tongues and quote Voltaire, as if they think they are the new stewards of Enlightenment-era ideals. "Oh, I don't defend what he said, just his right to say it!" while ignoring of course, the cumulative effect of constant hatred on its targets.

This is simply a case of the United States' long history of protecting the privileged's rights to denigrate and abuse those who are less fortunate. This is why the right rallies against any sort of hate speech legislation, against any anti-bullying legislation, against any rights or allowances that they think challenges the authority of their religions, etc. They do this because, simply, they hate people and want their hate protected at the expense of the people they hate. And they claim the first amendment supports this. Which is the sort of logic that says the 2nd amendment allows you to manufacture and stockpile chemical weapons. "it doesn't say you can't!"

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #161)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:44 PM

173. Take it up with the Supreme Court.

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #180)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:03 PM

184. Oh, haHA! At least these men are more apt to protect speech than YOU, apparently.

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #184)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:37 AM

210. At the expense of others, of course. Just like you.

Gotta protect the bigots, at the expense of the victims. Just like how we've gotta protect a rapists' right to visitation.

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #210)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:37 PM

286. You are, alas, completely illogical. To equate rape with speech is, in a word, STUPID.

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #180)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:08 PM

185. Just Out Of Curiosity Did You Support Or Oppose The Supreme Court's Flag Burning Decision?

Because many misguided Americans believe flag burners are deserving of violent retribution yet they would be the first to defend their freedom of expression.

That's why curtailments on free speech beyond what case law proscribes is fraught with peril.



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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #185)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:36 AM

209. "Beyond what case law proscribes," you say?

Why settle for allowing even that much infringement, DSB? Aren't you a "first amendment absolutist"? Looks to me more like you're just a windsock.

Good to know that you see no difference between burning a cloth, and heaping abuse on another person though.

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #209)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:02 AM

217. Where Did I Suggest

Where did I suggest I " see no difference between burning a cloth, and heaping abuse on another person." ?


I'll wait...

Case law has carved out narrow exceptions to free speech as has been discussed above. I don't see the need to go further...


on edit- I can produce disabled veterans and surviving family members of fallen ones who truly believe "burning a cloth" (flag) is heaping abuse on them but their feelings don't trump my right to exercise to engage in Constitutionally protected expression.









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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #217)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:09 AM

218. In your response to my post

Where I used the examples of bullying and verbal abuse as examples of "abuse of free speech." Your retort was to ask me about my position on flag burning. A flag, of course is cloth, and not a person. So by trying to compare the two, you're drawing an equation there.

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #218)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:18 AM

220. And I Established That To Some Burning That Cloth Is "Heaping Abuse On Them"

I don't know where we are going with this but I oppose a "hurts somebody's feelings" exception to the First Amendment. We can discuss the other exceptions that the Supreme Court has established.

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Response to DemocratSinceBirth (Reply #220)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:33 AM

221. And you seem to accept their argument wholly.

So long as it keeps you from having to admit that actual abuse against social groups you hate isn't acceptable behavior, I guess. Gays, blacks, muslims, jews, women... since some other idiot thinks burning a flag is abusive, we have to let those fucking peons just suffer through it, right?

White straight male high five, whaddya say buddy?

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #221)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:42 AM

222. Straight White Male

You make way too many assumptions. And DUERS who know me personally know I'm not a "straight white male" I was going to wake up my two gay room mates and transgendered one to point at the monitor and laugh but alas they are sleeping ...


I have been called a Kike, a Jew Bastard, a Christ Killer, a dirty Jew and regaled with such great poetry as "Mary said to Moses the Jews should have their noses." but I don't think my verbal tormentors should be prosecuted. Fortunately my tormentors didn't cut off my hair to see if I have horns which would be battery which takes me to my next thought on the topic.

I subscribe to Malcom X's admonition to "Be Kind, be courteous, but if someone lays his hands on you send him to the cemetery."


on edit- If you disrespect someone over an immutable or a virtually immutable characteristic you're garbage. However, I think there are better remedies than involving the iron fist of the state.


<lots of edits but the post I was responding to is a doozie>

Can I get a gay, Jewish, transgendered high five?

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #218)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:55 PM

293. It may very well be abuse, but outside of specific venues (e.g., schools), "verbal abuse", if not a

THREAT, is legal.

Did you never learn the childhood refrain about sticks and stones?

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #209)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:43 AM

223. If burning a cloth is OK, then what about burning some paper, like a Koran? nt

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #161)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:50 AM

233. Free speech also protected

The suffragettes and Martin luthor king.

The supreme court has ruled that kids don't have the same rights as adults, so antibulling is legal. It also falls under stalking too.

As a victim of bulling (by everyone, yes including a parent, though that would be abuse) I find it quite dispicable that you would even say that.

So let's get down to brass taks. Who do you want to make the decision on what is abuse? Maybe someone in the government?

Freedom of speech is there to protect people from being shut up, and in those cases listed above, they weren't very popular either. A lot of people would have called it 'an abuse of thier first admedment rights.'

Ps. I posted Voltaire.

PPS. We all benefit from free speech. When I pick up a book, when I watch a show. If we did things your way, things like darwin would be banned, any books about gay topics would be banned, and any one of these 100 books.
I
http://www.ala.org/advocacy/banned/frequentlychallenged/challengedbydecade/2000_2009

Really, give some deep thought to how it affects you.

I would rather do what is best for the majority, then be afraid of a minority.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:39 PM

171. Disgusting and risible at the same time. JUST WHOM DO YOU NOMINATE to "RE-DO" our Freedom of Speech?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 07:59 PM

182. No, it's not.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:34 PM

190. What a crock.

I have never missed the unrec, as much as i do now.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 08:47 PM

192. We have always had to put up with crap to have our right to free speech.

And our free speech has never totally been free. There are some limitations with libel and slander, though Faux and co go pretty much over that.
I don't Faux should be banned, just boycotted. There are ways to take someone down when you don't like what they say or represent that does not involve laws to limit what they can say or write. The laws you want may silence those you disagree with but they may eventually silence you too. I will always be a liberal but a liberal that believes strongly in civil liberties.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 09:09 PM

194. To everyone reviling OP in this thread, do you consider Citizens United free speech? Why not?

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Response to patrice (Reply #194)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:02 AM

238. Free speech applies to people

There has never been a definite decision on wether corporations are people.

If they are, I disagree, because they cannot take up the responsibilities of a citizen.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #238)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:09 PM

251. The ACLU defends Citizens' United.

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Response to patrice (Reply #251)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:41 PM

287. So my next point is

The constitution should be changed so that corporations are declared not to be people, and that money does not belong in politics.

Money in politics undermines democracy, because politicians will do what a small group of donors want, not what is good for everyone.

Basically, what we have is a dictatorship quasi-democracy.

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Response to Confusious (Reply #287)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:00 PM

304. I believe the ACLU discusses modification of the Constitution for this & is against it. nt

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Response to patrice (Reply #304)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 02:55 AM

318. Well, I'll have to disagree with them about it.

I'm sure there's a way to get the money out of politics and preserve our free speech rights.

It's just to corrosive a force.

Ps. And after reading Livy, salust, and a couple other histories about the roman republic, you will not believe the parallels to today.

And that is why I believe the way I do.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 09:28 PM

198. If you think our freedom of expression is killing us -

- just wait and see what it's like when that freedom is taken away.

A group of political and religious zealots is responsible for the killings. Quit making excuses for them.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 09:35 PM

199. And the ONLY reason you were able to post this

without fear of retribution is because of the very Freedom of Expression that you decry.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 11:00 PM

204. You can add all "bad" speech to the Patriot Act.

no point in inventing another vehicle to take away our civil liberties.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #204)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 11:53 PM

206. ^^^This.^^^ nt

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Response to hack89 (Reply #204)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 05:36 AM

226. Oh, snap.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sat Sep 15, 2012, 11:51 PM

205. Nope, can't get behind this.

If this had been included in the First Amendment from the beginning, we'd have (had) no women's suffrage, no civil rights movement, no abolition of slavery, no pushback against the religious right, and no gay rights movement, no anti-war movement, no environmentalist movement, no pro-choice movement, no teaching of evolution in schools, etc. All of those were considered an affront to something or another when they started.

The gay rights movement in particular would have been shot full of holes for being offensive to religion. Hell, the people that oppose GLBT rights *still* frame it as an attack on religion. They're just failing now because we were allowed to speak out without being railroaded by the government for hate speech. Same goes for women's rights, especially the right to control their own reproductive system.

I've got news for you, the Glen Becks and Fox Newses won't be going away, even if you get your wish. They're backed by the people with the money and the power. It would be the MSNBCs and Rachel Maddows that would get shut down.

Even if I supported the censoring of offensive speech, as a liberal it would be tactically unwise of me to do so.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:57 AM

213. Do you think that simply muting people will make them go away?

 

If someone harbors hateful, divisive thoughts inside, then do you really think that muzzling his or her right to free speech will magically make the problem go away? More likely, internalizing it in such a way will be more likely to lead to outbreaks of violence if an individual perceives it to be his or her only means of protest/expression.



Free speech may serve as a valuable outlet for letting people vent their feelings.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:05 AM

214. What is "offensive" is entirely in the ears of the beholder.

 

To an atheist, a Muslim message may be "offensive." To a Muslim, an atheist message may be "offensive." To a Red Sox fan, "Go Yankees!" is offensive. To a Yankees fan, "Go Red Sox!" is offensive. In a society with a million different views and opinions, how would you ever arrive at a decision as to whose or which one's speech should be banned?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 02:53 AM

215. US freedom of speech

besides the citizens united ruling, which is just the SC more than anything (and only 5 out of 9 at that) is much more mature and sensible than Canada, UK, or Germany. I always wonder who gets to define hate speech, and who gets to decide which groups get protection from what type of offensive speech.

Germany locks people up for even talking about Holocaust denial, but that certainly hasn't stopped the revival of a Neo-Nazi movement there.

You see, the antidote to lies being spread is truth, not censoring the lies, which is a messy and subjective process in a democracy, and which only give those crazy ass views more legitimacy anyways.

The problem in the US is apathy, and censoring speech won't help. You don't think some conservatives aren't thinking exactly the way your are, that if only government could censor those devil liberals, treasonous bastards that they are, things would be better.

You can blame our archaic election system and campaign finance laws for a lot of the problems you listed. Those do need reform.

As for the Innocence of Muslims thing, which is what sparked this thread I'm guessing... yeah it's shit, but that's just it, the US knew it was shit, it didn't do good here, no one cared about it really. You know why? Because the US, as bad as it is, is a hell of a lot more educated and tolerant of a society than many Middle East countries. I could give two shits if some people can't handle it over there. Those cultures will have to put on their big boy pants and grow up. No one is going to bend down to their idiotic religions in the modern world, and the sooner they realize that, the better. Hell, we'll even make fun of it for what it is, same as we have to Christianity now for a couple centuries. Just another fraud.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:14 AM

219. You and the 22 who have so far rec'd this thread may support appeasing the fundies

but I sure and as hell don't And who exactly should be deciding what is and this not truth?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 05:51 AM

227. I disagree with all three foreign laws you mention. Citizens United is a different matter.

Yes, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Germany are all reasonably free countries -- as is the United States. None is perfect.

The foreign laws you cite go too far. To the extent that they're proper (banning the immediate incitement of violence), that's already illegal in the United States, as others have mentioned.

Most of your post has to do with banning speech if the content fails some (fairly amorphous) test of what you personally consider acceptable. Citizens United didn't have to do with content. There's plenty of big corporate money influencing elections without insulting minority religious groups or the like.

Heck, we'd have a problem even if the big-money advertisers were restricted to demonstrably true content, like "under President Obama, we've had (fill in number) consecutive months of unemployment over 8 percent." Even though that's true, and one valid point in the national debate, the problem is that one side's points get much more exposure.

The real flaw in Citizens United is that it failed to recognize that spending huge amounts of money on political ads is speech, but it's also conduct. It's like protesting the Vietnam War by burning your draft card -- the Supreme Court held that such conduct was not protected by the First Amendment. That was the correct decision. The same logic should have been applied to the spending at issue in Citizens United.

As for the overall state of political dialog, I don't think other countries are better off because of hate-speech laws. I think they're better off because their political dialog is less subject to domination by big-money interests.

There's also a different issue raised by your reference to the public airwaves. There's no practical limit to the number of different newspapers and magazines that can be published, but scarcity of spectrum space means that not all points of view can have all the broadcast air time they want. Therefore, under the First Amendment as interpreted by U.S. courts, the government has greater power to regulate broadcast media than print media. Fortunately, the advent of cable makes this distinction less important.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 06:13 AM

228. There are people all over the world fighting for free speech sitting in a jail cell

And you are sitting here, living in a open and free society, saying that we need to get rid of this freedom?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 06:20 AM

229. Facts are objective. Truth is subjective. How one uses facts can be subjective.

And what constitutes incitement?

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:23 AM

230. Jessy169, who among us should decide whose speech, what speech incites to riot?

You see. Banning speech, burning books, requires the speech-banner or the book-burner to make a value judgment. The minute a person is given the authority to make that kind of value judgment about ideas, speech, books, news, etc., that person, the censor, has a degree of control that transforms the society into a dictatorship under the censor.

Censorship is dictatorship. The two are one and the same (although dictators don't necessarily always censor in the way you are suggesting). You can censor very specific kinds of information like child porn. Information that can be narrowly defined. The censorship is limited and not based on a subjective decision about the information being banned.

But you cannot have objective censorship of political or religious speech. It is nearly impossible to establish clearly defined criteria for what is or is not acceptable, what will or will not incite to riot.

Do you think that advocating against the military draft should be barred?

Do you think that publishing a book written by Karl Marx should be illegal?

How about a book that suggest that sexual repression or frustration causes people to become violent? (May sound silly today, but it has been banned.)

How about banning all foreign news media? (The dictatorship in Greece tried this in the early 1970s.)

These are just a few examples of the kinds of things that people have wanted to censor in the past.

Sorry, free speech is here to stay. We don't want information czars who tell us what we can and cannot read, hear, say or write. We have tried that, and it did not end well.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #230)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:24 AM

243. Jessy169's post #122 was hidden, so they cannot reply to you

In one of the increasing ironies of this topic, their post that implied a DUer's post was unintelligent was decided to be 'rude' etc.; so that attack on a post means they can't reply to anyone else in this thread. Meanwhile, juries allow attacks on DUers themselves, which say they hate Muslims and support bigotry, to stay - see http://www.democraticunderground.com/1240143802 .

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #243)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 11:25 AM

247. That poster was simply rude and non responsive. I asked specific questions and that

post told me to take a rest rather than address any of them. Never did state if this attack on the First Amendment was intended to create blashphemy protections, while allowing the religious to continue attacking gay people. Refused to discuss the role of international media, including media in the region that found that piece of shit video and told the people it was shown on American TV, all that poster wanted was to say 'you should not be free to speak, but I should'. That attitude was displayed perfectly by the posters evasion of direct questions about the subject the poster brought up. Wants to curtail my freedom of speech, but does not see fit to respond to direct questions about the specifics. 'Take a break' the poster said to me when I questioned the specifics the poster had in mind. I asked the poster to clarify, poster refused and told me to take a rest. That is, the poster said 'shut up and let me attack your Constitution with impunity'.
Anyone who wants to come gunning for my Constitutional rights best be ready to discuss what they have in mind, that is a basic requirement. That poster refused to clarify their attack on my rights. And that poster was rude as shit in the process.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #230)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 03:49 PM

276. I like be Canadian

I like our law that bans hatred and lies.

what you wrote is good but there is a lot of hatred and lies coming out of the USA.

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Response to riverbendviewgal (Reply #276)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 06:39 PM

281. Canada may have some graces

But once people learn that they can be "offended" and that can be used to stifle other people, it will be used effectively, consistently and repeatedly. Harper has used this to good effect, making the people in the Western half of the country feel Toronto et Quebec do not care about offending their "culutral sensitivies." Sadly, so has the Bloc Quebecois, which uses their fear of being offended to defend offensive ideas such as "vrai linge" which is racism with a french accent.

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Response to DonCoquixote (Reply #281)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:27 PM

283. I know this but so far it is not like the USA right now

Harper knows he is being watched. Th Bloc has only 32 percent of the vote in PQ. so there is a minority govt.

I think the next election for Harper is he will be out. One thing I can see here is there is more level headness. Thank Goodness.

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Response to riverbendviewgal (Reply #283)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 12:06 AM

317. I hope so

But I think that as long as that pipeline is being talked about, there will be a rung for the Harpers to climb back onto.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:53 AM

242. Sorry - I refuse to give volent people veto power over my civil rights.

giving in to them does not make them less violent.

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Response to hack89 (Reply #242)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 11:14 PM

315. +1

This whole thing smells of a concern troll to me.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:11 PM

252. speech can be abusive and even scar for life... it is a psychic weapon...

That is why there are laws against hate speech and yelling fire in a movie theater when there isn't one...

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Response to trailmonkee (Reply #252)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:34 PM

257. I am wondering what you would think if there were more and better counter-weapons.

Those could take many forms, but the one I'd like to see most would be real world (not virtual) public environments where the people can go and "stand up for themselves" and seek collaborators.

Kind of like this board, but community face-to-face instead. The idea being that if someone is being attacked with speech, WE should at least help them defend themselves.

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Response to trailmonkee (Reply #252)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:34 PM

285. See all the above responses to this argument. The U.S. does NOT have laws against "hate speech."

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Response to WinkyDink (Reply #285)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:09 PM

307. The U.S. has laws against speech which increases danger to vulnerables beyond what they would

otherwise reasonably expect from the circumstances that they are in.

You will see that this is referred to as: it is illegal to "shout fire in a darkened crowded theater, with few or poorly marked exits".

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Response to trailmonkee (Reply #252)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:55 PM

302. There are no laws against hate speech in the United States

that I'm aware of. What hate speech laws are you talking about?

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Response to SickOfTheOnePct (Reply #302)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:44 PM

309. Speech that increases danger to vulnerables beyond what they would otherwise

reasonably expect in a given situation is illegal in the U.S.

That principle is commonly phrased TTE, "It is illegal to shout fire in a darkened crowded theater that has few or un-marked exits."

Hate speech fits this criteria.

Fire = expressions of hate and its probable consequent threats;
Darkened theater = uninformed, or ignorant, or angry, or violent environments;
Crowded = high and increasing instances of reactors, limited social/economic mobility options;
Few or un-marked exits = limited, missing, or confusing resources for avoiding such dangerous environments.

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Response to patrice (Reply #309)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 05:48 AM

319. Nice try, but no cigar

Fred Phelps and his ilk spout hateful, anti-gay speech all day long, speech that could certainly endanger LGBT people, and the Supreme Court has said they have that right.

The KKK spouts spout hateful anti-black and anti-Jewish speech all day long, speech that could certainly endanger blacks and Jews, and the Supreme Court has said they have that right.

Saying that the "no fire in a crowded theater" law is a law against hate speech is a non-starter.

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Response to SickOfTheOnePct (Reply #319)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 12:01 PM

324. Perhaps the principle should not be applied by law, but by community assent instead. You've heard

of stochastic terrorism?

How about stochastic progressivism?

If Justice has been captured (like regulatory capture), perhaps the people should take matters into their own hands, nonviolently of course.

Thinking of movement potentials here, not necessarily political, but just like the churches, powerful nonetheless.

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Response to trailmonkee (Reply #252)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 10:04 PM

311. hate crimes more specifically... sorry, speech can be part of that...

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 01:40 PM

259. "A hard look at freedom of expression?" Never

It's the most important amendment in the entire Constitution / BoR.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 06:21 PM

278. I'm afraid your wrong

People in the UK are already being oppressed by restrictions on freedom of expression as are people in Denmark.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:32 PM

284. I strongly disagree with your viewpoint.

VERY STRONGLY

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 07:52 PM

292. I think I've got it: The OP doesn't like "Saturday Night Live."

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:01 PM

294. The solution to speech you don't like is more speech, not restricting speech.

Freedom of expression is an absolute and must not be restricted, no matter how hateful some of it is.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:02 PM

295. Sorry, but our freedom of expression has saved us and will continue to save us. eom

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 08:11 PM

296. I think this OP was an exercise in dragging a shiny thing under the water behind a boat...

Think about it... almost 300 replies to a post saying The First Amendment is killing us and calling for the United States to become more like Canada, the UK, and Germany.

Juxtapose this with the fact the OP has yet to be referred to on "that other" website.

300 replies to a post telling us unfettered free speech is a bad thing and no mention?

Yep... a shiny thing being pulled through the water behind a slow moving boat.

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Response to cherokeeprogressive (Reply #296)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 09:50 PM

310. I think whenever people talk with one another about important stuff that's good, who cares

about what someone thinks they are doing when they intentionally or otherwise trigger that kind of chain reaction, because it becomes its own thing, no matter what others think it is.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 10:46 PM

312. Inciting violence? I just don't see it.

So the suggestion has been made that this supposed anti-Islam film (whihc I have not seen) should be banned, because it "incites violence." I just don't see that. If the film had encouraged a mob to go kill Muslims, and then they did, then I could see the point. But that is not what the film did, as far as I know. Instead, the situation is just about the opposite. The film apparently is against Islam, but it doesn't advocate killing Muslims. Rather, the film (or even the idea of the film) angers mobs of Muslims, and then they go and commit acts of violence. So it's just the opposite.

So I agree with those here--and I'm glad to see there are many--who say the film should not be banned, even if we don't like it. That's part of freedom of speech.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 10:58 PM

313. No it isn't.

 

What would kill us as a nation would be to begin pruning away our freedoms to appease people who hate us.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Sun Sep 16, 2012, 11:08 PM

314. Man I miss that unrec button. nt

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 01:26 PM

326. This is an astonishingly stupid post.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 01:29 PM

327. Bullshit--how about we have a re-do of the live and let live principal?

We separated from Great Britain for a reason. And live and let live was that reason.

How about we just empower the non fascist instruments of free expression instead of allowing twisters of the Constitution to wipe them out? That's what is needed. More govt support of minority and less monied interests instead of vice versa. We could do that without changing the Constitution.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 01:31 PM

328. Sigh...unrec

 

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 02:54 PM

330. Dumbest. Thread. Ever.

 



I rather like my First Amendment rights, thank you very much.

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Response to Jessy169 (Original post)

Mon Sep 17, 2012, 03:37 PM

331. Under The Broad Hate Speech Laws

Under the broad hate speech laws suggested in the original post the author of the post below could expect to be arrested:


http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021361949


Something to think about.

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