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Old 10-01-2006, 06:05 PM   #16
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
I have not seen the blocking of publishing Chomsky and Pilger by the government
Not yet.
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Old 10-01-2006, 08:20 PM   #17
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The right blatantly opposes free speech
Are we talking about "censorship" and standards of decency or "censorship" and political speech?

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I can tell you censorship of leftist speech/writing is alive & well here in the States
(a recent example being)
____________ wanted to talk/write about _________ and was prevented by ___________ from "the Right."
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Old 10-01-2006, 08:59 PM   #18
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
Free of hypocricy is that social conservatives (like Pat Buchanan who sides against Rushdie) don't pretend to be in favour of free speech, they are bastards who advocate censorship but at least their honest about it. I don't admire the position, I think that censorship is wrong but I do think that it is more honest than standing for free speech in the forms of gay rights parades and blasting the government but then turning around to supress intolerent speech.

I extend my support for free speech to the likes of Abu Hamza al Masri telling the world that the Jews are the sons of pigs and apes; I draw attention to and I think rightfully blast that speech as violent and intolerent but still think that the right for it to be said (and importantly publicised and criticised) is better than sending him off to prison for "race hate".
If you say you don't admire them, I'll take you at your word, but suggest you phrase yourself more precisely. Your language is absolutist and binary. Why if I didn't know better, I'd say this was really just an attempt to smear a group I didn't like and exculpaite one I identify more with.

You still have not provided a convincing arguement why I should give any sort of credit for "honest" bigtory or up-front attempts to stifle the speech of others. You argument remains weak in a second respect as well, in that you still have not grappled with the left's support of "hate speech" (check out the ACLU's controversial legal defense of the KKK, for example).
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Old 10-01-2006, 09:20 PM   #19
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I am not making a binary distinction, there are obviously those on the left and right who support free expression and those who do not, the point was the absurdity of an article describing those who supported the buycott of Danish products being labelled fervent right wingers when the left has just as much at stake.

The minor detail that the cited example of the passionate advocate for free speech against religious bigots is left is being overlooked. I do not think that left or right has a monopoly on free speech, I do think that the bastard who admits that they want censorship is more honest than somebody who is duplicitous about it and the ACLU is reasonably consistent.
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Old 10-01-2006, 09:27 PM   #20
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You still have not provided a convincing arguement why I should give any sort of credit for "honest" bigtory or up-front attempts to stifle the speech of others.
Because it is a lot easier to recognise and resist; it is not insidious.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:05 AM   #21
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I agree that "fervent rightwingers" is overdrawn editorializing hype (one of the Guardian's less appealing tendencies in general, IMO) although Hitchens in fact no longer considers himself a member of the Left, and told the Independent (Sept 23, 2004) "I don't have a political allegiance now, and I doubt I ever will have again."

I don't though see how declining to participate in a counter-boycott buying campaign constitutes an endorsement of censorship.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:07 AM   #22
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Saying that the cartoons should not be published and that it is should be a crime is. Anything short of defending the right to publish and criticise is fence sitting at best, especially when the reaction causes so much violence and the speech si so threatened.

Note the important distinction made above between the right to publish and the content being published.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:20 AM   #23
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"Should not be" I don't have a problem with, that's a statement of opinion on the advisability of endorsing what's likely to broadly alienate to little benefit, not a demand that it be made illegal. I object to the idea that because someone else reacts violently to publications I find distasteful, I therefore owe the publisher some special leg-up beyond affirming their legal right to publish and to not suffer violence for that. A counter-boycott does nothing to address violence; boycotting is not violent.

And I don't recall the notion that the cartoons possibly constituted illegal hate speech being a common critical theme at the time.
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Old 10-02-2006, 03:34 AM   #24
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The demands by Muslim groups to institute hate speech laws, appealing to the EU and UN to enact those laws was an issue; an unrealistic issue in the context of Denmark but certainly relevent in other countries.

Although now government censorship is moot. We have reached a point where self-censorship out of fear has taken hold, so the protestors and murderers have succeeded in getting people to think twice before doing anything that may be percieved as offensive to Muslims and I think that is a pity, luckily it has also emboldened those who want to defend and produce such provocative ideas and expressions; the cartoon wars are symptomatic of broader cultural differences that underlie conflict between the faithful and unbelievers.
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Old 10-02-2006, 11:50 AM   #25
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Originally posted by verte76
The right is more consistent with the whole free speech deal.
So what if they are?

Following that logic is the same as following the old adage that "better the law be certain and unjust than just and uncertain."
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Old 10-02-2006, 02:09 PM   #26
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Its more like being consistently wrong.
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Old 10-02-2006, 09:19 PM   #27
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Antriam gets my point precisely. I'm still stumped on the "so what?" here. Yeah, they're consistently wrong. And I know I don't need to remind you that the cartoon crazies were not folks one could identify with the Left. So that's less insidious how, exactly, because it's pitifully transparent? I'm just not inspired by that logic. LOL.

Maybe if you explained or thought out loud a bit about the purpose you had when you started this thread?

Interesting discussion, AW, about a topic that couldn't be more important. FWIW, when I do on ocassion hear a fellow lefty suggest "hate speech" laws in the misguided but well-intended belief that it's possible to legislate morality, I remind them that we're ultimately better off with the bigots out in the open where we can see them.
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Old 10-02-2006, 09:35 PM   #28
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I hate the Ku Klux Klan, but they are U.S. citizens and have free speech rights. They have a right to have meetings and marches. I don't have to like them. Of course I have the right to demonstrate against the Klan, and, indeed, I do. I have been participating in anti-Klan activities for two decades.
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Old 10-02-2006, 10:19 PM   #29
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I remind them that we're ultimately better off with the bigots out in the open where we can see them.
I think this was A_Wanderer's point.
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Old 10-02-2006, 10:25 PM   #30
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A_Wanderer, I actually agree with you 100% on this issue. Which raises the question of how accurate broad, sweeping statements like this can really be:

Quote:
Originally posted by A_Wanderer
the cartoon wars are symptomatic of broader cultural differences that underlie conflict between the faithful and unbelievers.
As you probably know I'm what you'd call "faithful" and while I don't have a personal issue with the Mohammed cartoons (since I'm a Christian) I fully support the right of anyone to mock or ridicule my faith (though of course I have the right to not be happy about it). So you may want to question your sweeping conclusions about the "bad guys" of faith and the "good guys" of unbelief.
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