Sunday, June 14, 2009

Round Up the Usual Suspects for Speech Violations


Playwright Janet Langhart Cohen appeared on CNN yesterday right after the shooting, as she wrote a play that was supposed to have been debuted at the Holocaust Museum last night.

...She said something must be done about ridding the Internet and the public dialogue of hate speech. I agree. ...They are hate-motivated crimes and each of these men had been under some sort of police surveillance prior to their actions. Isn't it time we started rounding up promoters of hate before they kill?

Quoted by Clay Cramer

Think she's referring to Olberman and Letterman?

There's more.

Judith Warner wrote a column for the NYTimes--which is mocked in this essay. Pertinent excerpt:

Progressives are rational and logical. This means we can afford to disregard the facts and allow fear to take over. We don’t need evidence to conclude this lone gunman is merely the tip of a vast, sociopathic iceberg known as the Republican party. They’re everywhere. Tiller’s murder followed months of harassment and intimidation at abortion clinics: a chilling sequence of events that never happened before a black man ascended to the Oval Office. The obvious connection between insane abortion activists and insane, Christian hating Nazi anti-Semites is so self-evidently self evident that there's no need to establish a link between them. In fact, it's the absence of a tangible connection that proves our case beyond a reasonable doubt. Under our system of checks and balances that's all we need to lock these folks up for the duration.

But if you read the original essay, all the above is in it except the explicit "lock 'em up" call. Warner mentions O'Reilly, Beck, Lou Dobbs, and Limbaugh, and unlocks the "code" language which they use. Turns out it's all white supremacism and anti-governmentism.

I had no idea that killing Tiller was an act of "white supremacism" --nor "anti-governmentism." For that matter, I'm curious about the connection between 'anti-governmentism' and an attack on the Holocaust Memorial.

Grim suggests that Ms. Warner calm herself a bit. I join him there.

But Grim does not challenge the loose (therefore not useful) claim of Ms. Warner that the speech of O'Reilly, Beck, et al. is 'hateful.'

The term 'hate speech' is now used to describe almost any oral or written communication which is not Politically Correct. But 'politically correct' speech is usually content-free speech; it does violence to communication by masking what is true.

Politically correct speech is closely related to the code-speech used by residents of the Soviet Union or East Germany when those residents were expressing unhappiness with the regnant dictatorships. It has historical precedent--another variant was documented in the book Shadowplay, where the author showed how Catholics used code under the regime of Elizabeth. (She learned about 'code-speak', by the way, when living in Moscow as the wife of the British Ambassador.)

There is such a thing as hate, and it is sometimes expressed in speech. Actual hate-speech, while rare in public, is despicable; those who use it should be shunned.

But the 'hate' label is becoming meaningless, as Aesop warned us.

And that is bad for discourse.


Deekaman said...

"Hate Speech" is any speech which is in disagreement with the Leftist orthodoxy.

They WILL come for us.

Grim said...

Now, that's just the sort of talk Warner's using.

I didn't respond to her assertion because Cassidy did more damage to it than it could handle. Any more would be piling on.

capper said...

Grim, Deekaman has poor social skills, that's all.

But I am concerned about daddio when he wrote:

There is such a thing as hate, and it is sometimes expressed in speech. Actual hate-speech, while rare in public, is despicable; those who use it should be shunned.

Sorry, daddio, I, for one, will not shun you, but try to help you have more effective coping skills.

Deekaman said...

Crapper...I mean, Capper. You are SUCH a comedian.

So tell me, oh, wise one....who decides what is and is not hate speech? It's not like yelling "fire" in a crowded theater. Tell me...what's the definition? My point is that those who are railing against "hate speech" are doing it for one reason and one reason only: to shut the other side up.

Have you guys no shame?

Dad29 said...

Deek, 'sOK if capper shuns me. I'll manage to muddle through.

And in answer to your question about shame: no. They don't.

That's due to the fact that the Left has evolved beyond shame--just as they've evolved beyond all that silly 'morality' stuff.

capper said...

Wow, you guys could take that act on the road. Did you really type it with a straight face?

Deekaman, you only show you are emotionally stunted at about a fifth grade level.

Daddio, You must be in the top running for poster boy of hypocrisy. Or is insulting one's dead relatives socially acceptable now?

Deekaman said...

Yes, crapper, of course. And if you are so evolved and all knowing, answer my question...or are you unable to?


On the other hand, I'm glad to have served to defend YOUR right to be hateful.

capper said...

One does not answer a rhetorical question. I thought even you would have had that much understanding of the world.

I stand corrected on thing though. You may not be emotionally stunted. You may simply have a personality disorder.

Deekaman said...

It wasn't rhetorical, but continue to believe your delusions of grandeur. I continue to laugh in your face.

capper said...

And you continue to be irrelevant.

Deekaman said...

Still waiting for an answer to my not rhetorical question.


capper said...