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Old 06-02-2003, 05:36 AM   #91
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STING,
I've never once commented on the right of the KKK to march or demonstrate in towns. I am extremely concerned by this, as it does often lead to an increase in racial tension and racist attacks in those areas. For example, a National Front (who are probably the closest equivalent to the KKK in England) march in Bradford a few years back led to riots in the town. However I don't support forbidding such organisations to march, unless they are doing so with the explicit intention of causing violence.

I have said I don't agree with allowing the KKK to speak on university campuses for the simple reason that I believe black students have a right to go about their business on campus without being subject to a racist attack. I don't think that simply because some students want to hear a white supremacist speak, black students, Jewish students and Muslim students should have to fear for their safety. I believe universities ought to be places of diversity, tolerance and respect and I think inviting a white supremacist group to campus poses a threat to that.

Anyhow, I think we've discussed this enough to realise we won't agree, so how about we just agree to disagree? Thanks for an interesting discussion!
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Old 06-02-2003, 10:28 AM   #92
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From a campus point of view, hate speech is never really allowed is it? Thats the biggest difference between this KKK stuff and the original topic of this thread. I'm all for freedom of speech. I question it when it leads on to other things like violence. And it does. I dont necessarily think that limitations on speech should really be set. But I dont think either that education necessarily works. How much education would change anyone's views on anything here? Perhaps to someone with limited knowledge on a topic, perhaps. But largely, people come to their conclusions by learning first. I have recently joined another message board with an extremely large FYM type section. It is often filled to the brim with WN's (white nationalists) especially when their own sites, mainly the phora and stormfront are hijacked. Which happens often. The majority of these people are calm and rational about their beleifs and dont outwardly condone violence or hate crimes. Some do however. Actually, a lot do. I dont know if any of them are KKK members, but their thoughts are irrational to me. They would be to probably all of us. One thing I have learned, is these people cannot change their views. Their pet hobbies are their sense of self and the failings of America with assimilation and its failings, cross cultural isolations etc etc etc. Their problems are many and varied and given the chance, they would largely not see violence toward those groups they deem worthy of it, as bad. To read their thoughts on Mumia, Rodney King etc...hate speech CAN lead to hate crime. Hate and violence are linked. Not always hand in hand, but they're linked. Definately not mutually exclusive.
So its a conundrum. Speech in and of itself is not necessarily bad, but what it can encourage and foster, is. I actually dont think hate as it is, as a good thing to have anyway. I actually pity these people who are sometmies blinded to the point where they can't see where genuine and honest holes in their arguments exist.
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Old 06-02-2003, 01:43 PM   #93
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Fizzing,

I really do not have to much to add beyond whats already been said so I agree will have to agree to disagree.

I'm skeptical that there is a true link between racists speech, that does not explicitly authorize doing anything that would be a violation of the law, and violence against minority's. I don't doubt the violence happens, I just think other factors may be at work. But if there really is a link, then its something that has to be looked at.
I don't want to go down the road of banning free speech and opinion. Once you start down that path, where do you draw the line?
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Old 06-02-2003, 06:13 PM   #94
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I do not want to beat a dead horse, but I have not been around for a while, and have just read about two pages of this thread and still think there is something missing. Ignoring the dialogue (as well mannered and thought provoking as it was) between STING2 and Fizzingwhizzbees, I will still use the KKK analogy or even the Nazi analogy here. I think we all agree that on a campus our first amendment rights are upheld and most of the time pushed to the limit in that many kinds of groups can meet, and pretty much say what they want as long as they do not incite violence against anyone. The problem with the debate we are having here is that we are assuming if a school hired a member of one of these groups to speak, he WOULD incite violence and would give a hate speech.

I am assuming otherwise.

What is to stop a university from hiring a member of the Klan to simply give his views about black/white relations, or the history of his organization. Now this may be a bit naive, but what if this person (or a member of a current Nazi group) were to come and simply speak about what their beliefs are without looking to insult the group they hate. I do think this is possible and I would not put it past a university to ask someone like this to speak as an "informational and opinionated lecturer."

I have to say that although many people are claiming Hedges is simply an anti-war advocate, I think there is an underlying level of anti-Israel sentiment in most of his speech. All we need to do is simply re-read the speech to see that his beliefs do not stop at the US in the Middle East, but also of Israel's rights.

Now I ask - forgetting the anti-war stance he has against the US, what is the difference in this man's opinions about Israel, and someone from the KKK speaking his mind about the rights of African Americans? The graduating class may have been right to protest the speech as it may bee seen as inappropriate, but some may have also been personally insulted by what religion they are, or where they come from.

That is wrong, and that is the same thing as a Klan member insulting someone whose race he hates.

Now this next bit still seems to be continuing (even in PM's) which I do not understand, or appreciate. But I will say this, I was confused by the request for me to donate something, I am still confused about the request for me to donate something to anything, and I will be damned to have my name thrown around with the intention of trying to further a cause. If I believe in a cause, I act in the way that I find appropriate. It is no one's business what I give, when I give, or why I give. I am formally asking that my name no longer be used in this thread if it has anything to do with charity. When Bill O'Reilly once criticized certain groups for trying to take advantage of 9/11 by using charities, he was met with some criticism and asked what he gave his time and money to. His answer simply was:

"I give my time and money to charity, to whom I give it and when is not of your damned business."

I feel the same way, so drop the subject - this was a thread about freedom of speech, not my personal philanthropy.
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Old 06-02-2003, 07:05 PM   #95
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Quote:
Originally posted by ouizy
what if this person (or a member of a current Nazi group) were to come and simply speak about what their beliefs are without looking to insult the group they hate.
The KKK believe black people to be inferior to white people. In what way could they express this view without insulting black people?
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Old 06-03-2003, 01:57 PM   #96
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From the speech:

"...The real injustices, the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land..."

His opinion about Israel (Jews) vs. Palestinians, I find no different than a Klan member speaking about his opinion of whites vs. African-Americans, Jamaican Americans, Guyanese Americans, Jews, or anyone else who does not fit into thier belief system.
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Old 06-03-2003, 02:47 PM   #97
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How is protesting the Israeli occupation of Palestine (which, btw, have been repeatedly condemned by the United Nations) comparable to declaring black people inferior to white people? I don't agree with everything the speaker said, but I don't think any of it was anywhere near as offensive as a member of the KKK speaking.

Criticism of the policies of the Israeli government is not anti-semitic.
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Old 06-03-2003, 03:05 PM   #98
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Sorry, I just wanted to add to that post because I think it could be taken the wrong way. I do understand why many people perceive criticism of Israel to be anti-semitic, especially when it's criticism coming from extremists who don't even believe in Israel's right to exist. I understand (as best as a person who isn't Jewish can, at least) why many Jewish people feel so strongly about Israel, given the events which had taken place just prior to the creation of Israel.

However...I still don't think that means Israel should be exempt from the criticism which all other countries are subject to at one time or another. I don't support what Israel is doing in the occupied territories, but that doesn't mean I support suicide bombings - I'm as disgusted by them as any decent, rational person. I don't think either the Palestinians or the Israelis are blameless and I think that for there to be a peaceful solution there need to be concessions on both sides.

So...I do understand why people are sometimes concerned that criticism of Israel is anti-semitic, and I do think that some criticism of Israel is anti-semitic - ie those people who claim Israel has no right to exist. However, I think it's ridiculous to dismiss all sensible, rational criticism of the state of Israel as anti-semitic, and I think that to do so only serves to limit rational debate on the subject.

Hope nobody's offended by that.
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Old 06-03-2003, 05:06 PM   #99
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Even Ariel Sharon has now publically started using the word 'occupation', so I really don't see how this is anti-semitic or offensive.

Israel is occupying land which is not its own and it is building illegal settlements on it. The Palestinians are blowing themselves up, killing people in cold blood. Why can't both those things be true? Let's call a spade a spade. Fizzing is right, nobody here is blameless, and the idea anybody is above criticism is absurd.
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Old 06-04-2003, 03:56 PM   #100
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Quote:
Originally posted by ouizy
[B] Now this may be a bit naive, but what if this person (or a member of a current Nazi group) were to come and simply speak about what their beliefs are without looking to insult the group they hate. I do think this is possible and I would not put it past a university to ask someone like this to speak as an "informational and opinionated lecturer."

I have to say that although many people are claiming Hedges is simply an anti-war advocate, I think there is an underlying level of anti-Israel sentiment in most of his speech. All we need to do is simply re-read the speech to see that his beliefs do not stop at the US in the Middle East, but also of Israel's rights.

Now I ask - forgetting the anti-war stance he has against the US, what is the difference in this man's opinions about Israel, and someone from the KKK speaking his mind about the rights of African Americans?
I assume that for most Israelis or Jews anywhere around the world, a Nazi speech would a lot more offensive than anything Hedges said.

Can you figure out why?
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Old 06-04-2003, 08:52 PM   #101
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Indeed it would and I am not saying that it would be more or less offensive.

I am simply saying that I find some of Hedges remarks offensive, and I would understand it if others in the audience did to.

Imagine being from Israel and you have travelled thousands of miles to come to this university. Then the school decides to put some bonehead American journalist onstage who decides to voice his opinion about your homeland.

Is he Israeli?

No.

Should the speech be celebrating the students (including the Israeli students)?

Yes.

Did it?

No.

That is the point.


If I were an American student, let's say studying in Italy and it was time to graduate and the school decided to have as their speaker somone who was going to stand up there and discuss how bad American policy is (in the same tone Hedges did about Israel) and not once congratulate the students on their achievement - you are damn right I would protest.
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Old 06-05-2003, 07:26 PM   #102
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Quote:
Originally posted by ouizy
Indeed it would and I am not saying that it would be more or less offensive.

A speech of a Nazi would be more offensive for a Jew than a speech by Hedges.

Why?

Because history is important.
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Old 06-05-2003, 08:00 PM   #103
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And with that, I believe it is time to put this thread to bed. It's not anyone's fault. We've veered way off topic, and I simply feel we've verged into dead-horse land.
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