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Old 05-28-2003, 03:30 PM   #46
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No. Fundamentally, both groups have the equal right to express their views. Extremism does not diminish the right to express views. As long as they do not promote immediate violence (i.e., urging the crowd to physically attack others), the speech is equal.


Although I don't think inviting someone to speak about war on Iraq at a graduation ceremony is appropriate, I think there is a huge difference between inviting such a speaker and inviting a member of the KKK.

They both have "equal right" to express opinions? At a graduation ceremony? At a graduation ceremony it would be okay to invite a person who thinks black people are inferior to white people to speak? It would be okay to invite a person who represents an organisation which has murdered thousands of black people?

I can't help wondering if you would say the same thing if the speaker had been in favour of the war and had been booed by those who opposed war. Would you then say it was okay for those students to boo and shout because the pro-war speaker was offensive to many people there?

I don't think it was right to invite that speaker, I don't think it would have been right to invite a pro-war speaker. I agree with everyone who's said that a graduation isn't a political event and shouldn't be treated as such. I'm disputing that - I was just saying that I believe there is a difference between a person who didn't agree with the war and a person representing a white supremacist organisation.

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This assumes a form of prior knowledge of the speaker's topic. Should this be disclosed to students so they could walk out of any speech? For an apple to apples comparison, what is the appropriate response if Chris Hedges' speech was about the superiority of one race? Do you still refrain from shouting down the speaker?


I don't think it assumes that, at least I certainly didn't intend it to. All I meant was that if a speaker representing the KKK spoke at an event I was at, I would have no problem walking out of the event and I would encourage others to do the same. Racism has no place in society and I think every decent person should be united against it.

If Mr. Hedges speech was about the superiority of one race I certainly would have walked out. I don't know about shouting at him, I think sometimes heckling a speaker does more to help their cause than yours, but I certainly would not have sat and listened to racist lies.
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Old 05-28-2003, 05:51 PM   #47
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Fizzing,

I agree that the political views of the KKK person are far more offensive than the views of a the liberal or conservative on the war, but that is not the point.

Holding a political belief or view point, no matter how extreme, is protected by the constitution.

"They both have "equal right" to express opinions? At a graduation ceremony? At a graduation ceremony it would be okay to invite a person who thinks black people are inferior to white people to speak? It would be okay to invite a person who represents an organisation which has murdered thousands of black people?"

If it is ok to invite a speaker to speak on another political topic that is less extreme, then the answer to all of those questions is yes.

Personally, I would definitely walk out or say something if it was a KKK leader speaking about Racism at a graduation ceremony. I'm not sure but I might have done the same with Chris Hedges. Not to say that I think they are equally offensive, but both do offend on a certain level given the setting of the speach. I would probably sit through a pro-war speach but could definitely understand those who would walk out or shout at the speaker. I would not want to hear a pro-war speach or anything that could be so controversial at a graduation ceremony.

You have to realize though that while nearly everyone would find the KKK speaker offensive, many obviously would find a Chris Hedges anti-war speach or a Donald Rumsfeld Pro-war speach equally offensive.

If you find it appropriate to shout at or walk out on a KKK speaker at a graduation ceremony, then it is also appropriate to do the same thing to Chris Hedges or Donald Rumsfeld. All of them are political beliefs and each has the equal right to be expressed. If its appropriate to have a political speach at a graduation ceremony, then any political speach no matter how extreme it is, can be used. Thats why I am against allowing there to be a political speach at a graduation ceremony. Someone will usually always be offended to the point of shouting or walking out if such a surprise political speach happens at a graduation ceremony.

I'm not comparing the KKK to Chris Hedges or Donald Rumsfeld. I'm looking at the fact that political speach of any kind is inappropriate at a graduation ceremony and it is there for understandable the reactions of those that are offended. Despite some political beliefs being much more extreme then others, you cannot not have a double standard when it comes to political expression. Either all political beliefs can be expressed at a graduation ceremony or none at all.
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Old 05-29-2003, 12:02 PM   #48
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I am glad to see this went where it did and it is still going. I am going to reply broadly as many specifics have be brought up here, but I want to re-affirm my main point that a graduation speech is no place for one to give a tirade against war, or his political beliefs about the middle east. That does nothing for the graduating students as all they learn is that this individual is against the US's stance in the middle east, nothing else.

Now, I have to say that although STING2's use of a Klansman as an analogy may be a bit extreme, there are things this man said that were so offensive to certain groups, that the analogy may not be that far off.

If I were a student at this institution, paid my way through, and was able to receive a diploma that day, and I was sitting through this speech and I heard this man say:

Quote:
It was Israel who created Hezbollah
or I heard an official at the school say:

Quote:
"My friends, one of the wonders of a liberal arts college is its ability and its deeply held commitment to academic freedom and the decision to listen to each other's opinions. If you wish to protest the speaker's remarks, I ask that you do it in silence, as some of you are doing in the back. That is perfectly appropriate but he has the right to offer his opinion here and we would like him to continue his remarks.
I do not know who I would aim my rage at. I think I would not boo, as it would be too futile to do such a thing. I think I would have to do my best to physically remove the speaker from the stage. This may seem a bit childish to some, and a bit extreme, but there would be no way I could sit quietly at a ceremony to celebrate the fact that I graduated from a university for which I paid tuition for 4 years, and listen to a man who believes Israel created a terrorist organization who strives to destroy them.

No way.

I do not believe what that school official said. "The decision to listen to each other's opinions???" Absolutely not. Not when the school decided who was to speak at graduation, and not when I firmly believe that is not a forum to give one's opinions. I believe this speech was about as valid a graduation speech as me standing onstage at a University and giving my opinion on Zebras in the fields of the Serengetti. It is totally absurd.

Constitutional rights should not be argued here as this was a ceremony where the student was to appear to receive his or her diploma. Could you imagine how inappropriate a statement like this would be:

"If you do not elect to attend your graduation ceremony because you do not agree with the opinions of the speaker that we chose for you, we can mail you your diploma."

I think I would set fire to the campus.

When the offical says:

"he has the right to offer his opinion here and we would like him to continue his remarks"

He is putting the reputation of those that hired the speaker before that of the honor of the students graduating. Who is the "we?"

That is wrong.

I feel very strongly about this and as a person who is adamant about First Ammendment rights, I think when somone is hired, paid or given the honor of being hooded at a University for the speech he gives, it damn well honor the students, or let the students use their right to free speech to decide what happens at their graduation.

As I feel the least these kids could have done was boo, I think their frustration and anger should have been directed at the administration of the school moreso than the speaker. They hired him, they paid him, and for some reason they defended him. I would have done everything in my power to try to stop this man from speaking and unfortunately on my graduation day







I probably would have been arrested.
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Old 05-29-2003, 12:41 PM   #49
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ouizy, I totally agree with you. A graduation ceremony is for the students after all, and they pay all their hard-earned cash to go to that school.
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Old 05-29-2003, 02:20 PM   #50
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Originally posted by 80sU2isBest
Actually, isn't the term "Afro American" an insult? hiphop, I think the phrase you're looking for is "African American".
I admit I havenīt quite been up to date in terms of American pseudo-political correctness, dear old chap.
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Old 05-29-2003, 06:53 PM   #51
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funny, doesn't your tag say "New Yorker"


hmmmm
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Old 05-29-2003, 08:04 PM   #52
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Originally posted by ouizy
It was Israel who created Hezbollah
I have heard this from more than one source, even many Isralis.
It is always in the context of unintended consequenses.





Israeli Roots of Hamas Are Being Exposed

by Dean Andromidas

Speaking in Jerusalem Dec. 20, U.S. Ambassador to Israel Daniel Kurtzer made the connection between the growth of the Islamic fundamentalist groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad, and Israel's promotion of the Islamic movement as a counter to the Palestinian nationalist movement. Kurtzer's comments come very close to EIR's own presentation of the evidence of Israel's instrumental role in establishing Hamas, and its ongoing control of that organization.

Kurtzer said that the growth of the Islamic movement in the Palestinian territories in recent decades—"with the tacit support of Israel"—was "not totally unrelated" to the emergence of Hamas and Islamic Jihad and their terrorist attacks against Israel. Kurtzer explained that during the 1980s, when the Islamic movement began to flourish in the West Bank and Gaza, "Israel perceived it to be better to have people turning toward religion rather than toward a nationalistic cause [the Palestinian Liberation Organization—ed.]." It therefore did little to stop the flow of money to mosques and other religious institutions, rather than to schools.
link here
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Old 05-29-2003, 09:40 PM   #53
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Originally posted by ouizy
funny, doesn't your tag say "New Yorker"


hmmmm
Fine. I will say African American when you donate 300 $ to African children who face a concrete humanitarian crisis, starvation and AIDS.

I donīt know whatīs bad in saying Afro-American, to me that sounds good, but anyway, if itīs about that, no problem.

To assure you of my good motives, I will say African American ten times.

African American.

African American.

African American.

African American.

African American.

African American.

African American.

African American.

African American.

African American.

Now you go to donate the 300 $. Be politically correct.
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Old 05-29-2003, 09:47 PM   #54
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I was going to point out that hiphop happens to be from Europe and is using our language amazingly well considering that it's not his mother tongue. Snide remarks intended to discredit him on linguistic grounds are cheap. :
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Old 05-30-2003, 12:28 AM   #55
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sula, you missed the point entirely. I was not making a "snide remark" about whenhiphop's use of the English language. The reason I pointed out that afro American is an insult is something totally other. I didn't even know he's not from America. So reserve your thumbs down for someone who really is being insulting.
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Old 05-30-2003, 12:31 AM   #56
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Originally posted by whenhiphopdrovethebigcars


I admit I havenīt quite been up to date in terms of American pseudo-political correctness, dear old chap.
This has nothing to do with political correctness, "dear old chap".
I just thought you might want to know that "Afro-American" is generally used as an insult, so you wouldn't continue to say it.
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Old 05-30-2003, 05:41 AM   #57
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Ouizy, since I think you may not have much time to worry about which organization to send your 300 $ to, I have done a little research. You could go to:

http://www.nyumbani.org/Index.htm

Take a look at the project they started up there. I think it is good.

(anyone who wants to contribute, might also take a look at their board of directors, there are people like James M. Desmond, President, VP Legislation, Lockheed Martin, George L. J. Dalferes, Col., US Air Force - JAG (retired), Hon. Dennis DeConcini, US Senator (retired), Marian Ord, US Dept. of Defense - amongst many others)

Now, if you really would like an organization for which I can personally guarantee your funds are used in best ways possible, you might try Karlheinz Böhmīs "People for people" (if you have ever heard about those "Sissi" films with Romy Schneider, he was the main actor). This organization helps to eradicate famine in Ethiopia, and a very appaling detail is that of the 585 workers in Ethiopia, only 8 are from Europe - so this organization also tries to provide jobs for Ethiopians. You can find the english version of their homepage at

http://www.menschenfuermenschen.org/en/

I think it is just naturally correct to help those who suffer so badly. Iīd be interested in which organization you like better; waiting for you to reply.

80sU2isBest: I didnīt know Afro-American was an insult. If I have offended you or anyone else, I am sorry, dear old chap - btw, dear old chap is a nice English way of saying buddy, recently read in a book by P.G. Wodehouse. You, too, are free to donate to abovementioned organizations, if you want to make a real change.
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Old 05-30-2003, 07:08 AM   #58
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Originally posted by ouizy

Now, I have to say that although STING2's use of a Klansman as an analogy may be a bit extreme, there are things this man said that were so offensive to certain groups, that the analogy may not be that far off.
Okay - I agree that political speeches are inappropriate at a graduation. I agree an anti-war speech was inappropriate. I think a pro-war speech would also have been inappropriate.

BUT....anti-war campaigners are comparable to the KKK? What on earth? Are we forgetting that the KKK advocate the MURDER of black people? Are we forgetting the decades of terror the KKK created in the south? Are we forgetting the lynchings and the burning down of black people's homes?

The KKK are a violent, extremist, abhorrent group of people. Whatever your views on the war surely you can see that. Surely you can see that whether you supported or opposed the war, expressing an opinion on the war, even a controversial one, is in no way comparable to expressing support for an organisation which believes in the superiority of the white race and advocates violence against anyone they believe to be inferior.

Sorry for being so opinionated about this subject, everyone. I feel really strongly, as someone who campaigned against the war and who also spent a lot of time campaigning against racism, that there is simply no comparison between anti-war campaigners and white supremacist organisations.
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Old 05-30-2003, 07:14 AM   #59
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Originally posted by sulawesigirl4
I was going to point out that hiphop happens to be from Europe and is using our language amazingly well considering that it's not his mother tongue. Snide remarks intended to discredit him on linguistic grounds are cheap. :
I agree.
I have enough trouble posting coherently in English sometimes, lol! I'm amazed by all the people here for who English is a second language and yet speak it so perfectly I'd never guess it wasn't your first language.

*Fizzie
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Old 05-30-2003, 08:43 AM   #60
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Originally posted by FizzingWhizzbees


I agree.
I have enough trouble posting coherently in English sometimes, lol! I'm amazed by all the people here for who English is a second language and yet speak it so perfectly I'd never guess it wasn't your first language.

*Fizzie
Thank you, Fizzie, and Sula, but I really donīt care about being corrected (or disrespected, however that may be interpreted).

I care about ouizy donating.

You can change the world.
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