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  • #16
    It's worth remembering that many prominent (conservative) politicians, members of Congress, governors, mayors, members of the FBI, police chiefs across the country, etc, have claimed that Black Lives Matter is a hate group and that their rhetoric is hate speech. Of course, that's complete bullshit. But Republicans just spent the last two years in charge of all 3 branches of the national government, and control state level governments in many parts of the country. Do we want to give those people the power to determine what groups are "hate groups" and then prevent them from being able to speak when it's possible that they could begin weaponizing those laws against against their political foes?

    I believe if you look at the history of the United States and as well as the current political climate, there should be zero doubt that if we did have those sorts of laws in place, conservative politicians would absolutely use those laws to begin oppressing members of minority groups, especially ones protesting against systemic discrimination and injustice. Of course, we can say it's not fair if conservative politicians did start doing stuff like that, but in light of many of the things we're seeing happen in our political system right now, do we really have faith they wouldn't?
    Last edited by AnubisXy; 12-20-2018, 06:55 PM.

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    • #17
      The US has hate crime laws that haven't been twisted to persecute minorities and are mostly insufficient in the refusal to expand protection to groups that are suffering hate crimes but don't count because they're not written into the law as a protected class.

      Multiple countries manage to have hate speech laws without them falling into authoritarian cudgels.

      Because there's a simple thing to build into these laws: there be actual persecution based on hate involved. Hate crimes aren't based in what groups you belong to (though membership can be used as evidence), but what you actually do and why.

      Adapting our harassment laws to include "hate harassment" to have a legal response to hate speech that doesn't violate the 1st Amendment because harassment has to be legally met as well as the bigoted motivations, isn't something simple to turn into a way to oppress left groups (or right groups for that matter).

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      • #18
        Originally posted by AnubisXy View Post
        I believe if you look at the history of the United States and as well as the current political climate, there should be zero doubt that if we did have those sorts of laws in place, conservative politicians would absolutely use those laws to begin oppressing members of minority groups, especially ones protesting against systemic discrimination and injustice. Of course, we can say it's not fair if conservative politicians did start doing stuff like that, but in light of many of the things we're seeing happen in our political system right now, do we really have faith they wouldn't?
        What are your courts for?

        Really, a lot of this rhetoric around the idea that it's wrong to try opposing oppressive authorities and hate groups because of the idea that they'll try doing the same back to you... it's all very defeatist. Black Lives Matter already exists because of systemic ways in which black people are oppressed in the United States, so when the response is that their agitation will result in the authorities trying to oppress them even more... well, first of all, no shit, and second, what does the proposed solution then look like? What can one expect anybody to possibly do if you keep telling them that their methods will just lead to increased pushback from the people standing above them? Roll over and take it?

        It's a silly thing to expect people to do.


        I have approximate knowledge of many things.
        Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
        https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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        • #19
          Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post

          What are your courts for?

          Really, a lot of this rhetoric around the idea that it's wrong to try opposing oppressive authorities and hate groups because of the idea that they'll try doing the same back to you... it's all very defeatist. Black Lives Matter already exists because of systemic ways in which black people are oppressed in the United States, so when the response is that their agitation will result in the authorities trying to oppress them even more... well, first of all, no shit, and second, what does the proposed solution then look like? What can one expect anybody to possibly do if you keep telling them that their methods will just lead to increased pushback from the people standing above them? Roll over and take it?

          It's a silly thing to expect people to do.

          I would say one thing to do is not put those laws on the books in the first place. I wouldn't trust any politician with that power left or right. There is also a lot of space between curtailing speech and just taking abuse. Counter protests at far right or supremcist events, ridicule of racists, boycotts of people or places that you feel are discriminatory. Just calling attention to things like BLM is doing.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Grimmi05
            I would say one thing to do is not put those laws on the books in the first place. I wouldn't trust any politician with that power left or right.


            As Heavy Arms points out, in many instances, they're already here. A half-decent judiciary probably helps maintain their standards, as well as being able to dispute creation of legislation that might violate actual constitutional rights.

            Originally posted by Grimmi05
            There is also a lot of space between curtailing speech and just taking abuse. Counter protests at far right or supremcist events, ridicule of racists, boycotts of people or places that you feel are discriminatory
            I don't 100% agree with this standard, but I'd say it's a decent one to maintain in the face of people complaining that any of the stuff that you're describing constitutes curtailing speech.


            I have approximate knowledge of many things.
            Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
            https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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            • #21
              Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
              What are your courts for?
              Just look at how conservative politicians have been trying to take away or erode the power of minority votes through redistricting, voter ID laws, etc. And the courts have frequently upheld those things. If you give those same politicians the power to start curtailing the speech of minorities they'll absolutely do it. Will the court system stop them? Maybe, but after the Supreme Court upholding Trump's travel ban and other recent rulings, I have pretty much zero faith that the judicial system is on the side of minorities (in fact, one of the main reasons Black Lives Matter exists is because of systemic abuse towards minorities at all levels of the judicial process).
              Last edited by AnubisXy; 12-21-2018, 06:11 AM.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by AnubisXy
                If you give those same politicians the power to start curtailing the speech of minorities they'll absolutely do it.


                The part of this that is playing the game according to their book is in the frankly baffling assumption that they won't do it until progressives give them some kind of go ahead.

                That's the weirdest thing about these conversations; the idea that authoritarians are waiting for some kind of precedent.

                And even if they shroud and obfuscate their actions behind the assertion that there's a moral equivalence, or that they're just redressing a balance, for people to concede that to them is not only faulty, it's just plain lazy.

                Right now, I'm thinking back to an extended sequence in the Illuminatus trilogy where the absurdity of this kind of thinking is illustrated by comparing it to a damn Laurel and Hardy skit. "Look what you made me do."


                I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
                https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                  The part of this that is playing the game according to their book is in the frankly baffling assumption that they won't do it until progressives give them some kind of go ahead.
                  The thing is, conservative politicians in America couldn't simply pass legislation shutting down minority free speech by themselves. At least in America that sort of law would require some level of bipartisan support to get passed. And fortunately if conservatives tried passing such a law specifically limiting the speech of minority groups, progressives would refuse to go along with it and such a law would never see the light of day (and even many conservatives might not sign onto it).

                  But the danger would be when progressives try to pass a law to keep actual hate groups from spewing their filth. Conservatives might go along with that and then if such a law were passed, there's no doubt in my mind that conservatives would be more than happy to twist the intention of that law to shut down groups that they claim are hate groups (such as Black Lives Matter).



                  At the end of the day, would you be willing to give Donald Trump, Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan the ability to define what constitutes a "hate group" and then prevent those groups from being able to speak freely? Keep in mind their definition of what a "hate group" and "hate speech" is probably vastly different than yours or mine. Maybe the courts wouldn't allow law enforcement or other groups to use those laws to shut down legitimate minority protest groups, but sadly there is a long history of law enforcement in the US attempting to do just that and all too often courts and judges have sided with them. Giving the government even more power to suppress minority groups would be a very bad idea.
                  Last edited by AnubisXy; 12-21-2018, 09:04 AM.

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                  • #24
                    I like the new Let's Talk Politics thread we have here. Livelier than the old one.


                    “Nobody is purely good or purely evil. Most of us are in-between. There are moths that explore the day and butterflies that play at night.”
                    - Suzy Kassem, Rise Up and Salute The Sun
                    (She/Her)

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                    • #25
                      Heavy Arms' post seems to be going remarkably unremarked upon here.


                      I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                      Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
                      https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Isator Levi View Post
                        Heavy Arms' post seems to be going remarkably unremarked upon here.
                        I think Heavy arms has a slight point but its still something you have to be very careful about. Germany has the strictest speech laws in the western world and its illegal to insult somebody or heads of foreign states, England seems to think its better for its law enforcement to go after twitter trolls then deal with the rampant sex abuse scandals that have plagued the country.

                        There is also many countries that have curtailed free speech and then proceeded to fall into despotism and/or genocide. China, Cambodia, Russia, Germany during the third reich(what Anubis is describing is pretty much what happened with the raise of the third reich), Italy, Cuba, and other such places.

                        I would rather the government just not have that temptation.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by Grimmi05 View Post

                          There is also many countries that have curtailed free speech and then proceeded to fall into despotism and/or genocide. China, Cambodia, Russia, Germany during the third reich(what Anubis is describing is pretty much what happened with the raise of the third reich), Italy, Cuba, and other such places.
                          There's two questions that need to be answered there:

                          1) Were the kinds of speech that they were opposed to anything like attacks on traditionally persecuted groups?

                          2) Do you freaking know what the actual ideologies of those groups were, and the histories of their rise to power?!


                          I have approximate knowledge of many things.
                          Watch me play Dark Souls III (completed)
                          https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLDtbr08HW8RW4jOHN881YA3yRZBV4lpYw Watch me play Breath of the Wild (updated 12/03)

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Heavy Arms View Post
                            Because there's a simple thing to build into these laws: there be actual persecution based on hate involved. Hate crimes aren't based in what groups you belong to (though membership can be used as evidence), but what you actually do and why.
                            The problem is that the enforcement of laws in the country is not carried out evenly and impartially. Minority groups are far more likely to be arrested, sentenced and put in prison for the same crime that a white person gets. That's why Black Lives Matter exists in the first place. There is zero doubt in my mind that if you made hate speech illegal, law enforcement would disproportionately target minorities in the same way that minorities are disproportionately targeted by law enforcement for pretty much every other crime.

                            At the end of the day, a white person saying, "Kill blacks" would be more likely to get a reduced sentence and a slap on the wrist whereas an African-American saying, "Kill whites" would end up with a much higher sentence. So long as justice in America is not carried out equally, I'm against making any kind of speech illegal, especially when there's no doubt in my mind that law enforcement will use those laws as a new way to oppress minority groups.

                            I'm reminded of the three-strikes and increased sentencing laws that were rolled out under Clinton. Many African-American leaders supported those laws because they believed it would help clean up their local neighborhoods. But they didn't count on African-Americans being targeted by those laws more frequently than whites, and ending up with many of their communities gutted when members were given long or even life sentences because the way law enforcement would target their communities more often in the first place.

                            This is the kind of law that might look great on the surface, "Yeah, we'll be able to put people in prison for saying harassing or members of minority groups," but it's much more likely that minorities will be disproportionately targeted by the enforcement of that law, in the same way that they are disproportionately targeted by the enforcement of so many laws that currently exist.
                            Last edited by AnubisXy; 12-23-2018, 05:36 PM.

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                            • #29
                              Or even the history of protecting the freedom of speech in those countries before whatever curtailing being referencing occurred? Freedom of speech wasn't exactly some grand popular right enjoyed by all in... any of those countries (or at least not for a significant amount of time) before despots took them over. Cuba is the only one on that list that isn't a country where either a monarchy was overthrown by despotic regimes, or a monarchy was overthrow by a popular revolt that was then hijacked by a despotic regime.... because Cuba was a colonial pawn instead, where the quasi-post-colonial independence revolution based non-monarchy was then overthrown by a despotic regime.

                              Seems like "who overthrew the last monarch" mattered a lot more than freedom of speech issues (note: monarchies are not exactly known for great freedom of speech protections)... oh and all of those despots except Cuba took power before freedom of speech was recognized as a human right in international law... since that happened after WWII; and Cuba was only late to the party by a few years.

                              I could make a very solid case that in a few of those countries that idealistic and rapid expansion of public rights (China, Russia, Germany, Italy, and Cuba) with a general populous not used to such freedoms made things worse because it left them that much more easily to be taken over by despots that were ready to take advantage of those new freedoms and didn't have traditions, norms, or institutional inertia to curtail them.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by AnubisXy View Post
                                The problem is that the enforcement of laws in the country is not carried out evenly and impartially
                                And?

                                Should we overturn all laws against murder until we fix this problem? I mean, it's true about homicide enforcement. So should laws punishing homicide be removed until criminal justice reforms are executed? If not.... why should new laws be stayed just because there's a potential for the same abuse? And can you provide any evidence that hate crime statues in the US fall into this issue? Are hate crime laws currently being used to target minorities excessively? Because hate crime statutes are generally aggravating factors that require a law to be broken in the first place. Is there any evidence that hate crime laws are being used to increase the penalties on black men that kill white victims? If not... I don't see the validity in your position.

                                There is zero doubt in my mind that if you made hate speech illegal,...
                                Hence my suggestion for an anti-hate speech law within US legal confines is to expand hate crimes to cover things like harassment. You have to actually be guilty of both harassment and provable hate base motivations. You can't arrest someone for aggravating factors, only the base crime.

                                This is the kind of law that might look great on the surface, "Yeah, we'll be able to put people in prison for saying harassing or members of minority groups," but it's much more likely that minorities will be disproportionately targeted by the enforcement of that law, in the same way that they are disproportionately targeted by the enforcement of so many laws that currently exist.
                                Harassment is already a criminal offense in many jurisdictions.

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