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Sat May 18, 2019, 09:46 AM

Should racist insults be illegal?

In the land from which I come we have hate speech laws that try to ensure that any expressions of hatred towards someone based on their sexuality, race, colour, ethnic origin or religion, to name but a few, are against the law. If the police determine that a communication is abusive, threatening or insulting and the person’s intention with the communication is to alarm, harass or distress someone then the person doing the insulting is in a whole heap of trouble. They can be criminally prosecuted under several different statutes and for the most egregious of offences people can go to jail for up to 7 years. Just this week a chap was sent to jail for 5 years for daubing racial slurs on a neighbour’s garage.

These laws were implemented to protect the minority from the majority. On the whole they work well. In the States you, of course, have the First Amendment, giving any hate filled bastard the freedom to say whatever the hell he wants irrespective of the outcome of his words.

How far should ‘free speech’ be allowed to go? It may allow an individual the right to be a verbose self righteous pontificating racist arse, but should people not also have the right to be protected from the potential outcomes of said racist pontificating?

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply Should racist insults be illegal? (Original post)
Soph0571 May 2019 OP
snowybirdie May 2019 #1
Thyla May 2019 #2
Voltaire2 May 2019 #3
c-rational May 2019 #4
msongs May 2019 #5
abqtommy May 2019 #6
BradleySec24 Jun 26 #7
canetoad Jun 27 #8

Response to Soph0571 (Original post)


Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Sat May 18, 2019, 09:50 AM

2. Yes /nt

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Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Sat May 18, 2019, 09:54 AM

3. no.

But that doesn't mean anyone has to tolerate hate speech. You have the right be a racist and utter racist insults. But your employer has the right to fire you for doing so in public, online forums have the right to boot your racist ass off their platforms. The first amendment only restricts government censorship, it does not protect hate speech or restrict the actions of private individuals or organizations.

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Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Sat May 18, 2019, 10:35 AM

4. Good question, we often conflate free speech with the right to say anything, tis not. Also with an

uninformed public and radicalized media we IMO have lost much decency. Bringing back civics classes and teaching all Beneficial speech as defined by Socrates would help. Beneficial speech must follow three rules: It must be truthful, it must be necessary, and it must be good.

Bringing back a modern day Fairness Doctrine and getting rid of Fox news would help too.

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Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Sat May 18, 2019, 02:17 PM

5. no not made illegal. unless you want me to decided what you can and cannot say. better to know

what people believe and who your friends and enemies are up front and in public

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Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Sat May 18, 2019, 02:53 PM

6. Hate speech is often paired with physical violence.

While hate speech has 1st amendement protection, physical violence (including spitting on or kicking Children Of Color) resulting from hate speech is prohibited and prosecutable under Hate Crime laws.
So don't open yo' mouf if your brain goes south!

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Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Wed Jun 26, 2019, 11:43 PM

7. Not illegal, but socially unacceptable.

Might I add to the list of racist slurs being hurled on social media, when ethnicity is used as an unspecified pejorative slur, increasingly used against Americans without any connection with the targeted group, as if it doesn't doesn't change the offensiveness of the racist act.

For example: Jewish troll, Bibi's stooge, Netanayhu lover...

..and:

Russian troll, Kremlin stooge, Putin lover..

Some people have a blind spot, while they know one is wrong, but have a strange ability to do say equally racist comments to another group. Hitler didn't differentiate, he was an equal opportunity mass-murderer in the East, so don't be an ass.

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Response to Soph0571 (Original post)

Thu Jun 27, 2019, 01:31 AM

8. As you probably know

We have hate speech laws in Australia, both Federally and a state level.

This is an interesting article on our laws.

https://theconversation.com/explainer-how-do-australias-laws-on-hate-speech-work-in-practice-26105

Explainer: how do Australia’s laws on hate speech work in practice?


...snip

One of the biggest fears voiced by opponents of hate speech laws is that they have a chilling effect and stifle public debate on important issues. Our 20-year study of media content shows no evidence of such a chilling effect. While some of the crudest edges have been knocked off the language used in media commentary, Australians seem as willing as ever to express robust views about a broad range of issues from Indigenous land rights, to gay marriage, to immigration and refugees.

Most importantly, when we interviewed members of Australia’s diverse ethnic communities we heard one thing loud and clear: hate speech laws are important and shouldn’t be tampered with. Although many said they would never lodge a complaint or pursue litigation, they saw hate speech laws as a precious symbol: simply “knowing they’re there” makes them feel less vulnerable.

Hate speech laws were seen as setting a standard and making a statement about what’s “not acceptable”. And standards are worth proclaiming no matter how many times we fail to live up to them.

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