Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum
softwareNerd

Hate Speech: a crime in Europe

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

A garbage truck veered off the road in Glasgow hitting people, killing 6. Does not appear to be a crime; the driver probably had a seizure.

A 19-year old tweeted this: "So a bin lorry has apparently driven in 100 people in Glasgow eh, probably the most trash it's picked up in one day"

 

I suppose that's some kind of joke about Scots or about Glaswegians in particular.

 

Anyhow, the guy was arrested and then released on bail.

It's getting ridiculously out of control. So what if you offend someone, that should not be a crime. I mean I am an Ex-Muslim and I have to pretty much censor my own tweets on twitter, in case I say something might be misconstrued as inciting hate. And this to when you're trying to argue with a Muslim whose quoting the Qu'ran at you and telling you how you're going to burn in fire, and that their religion is perfect, and that I'm offensive.

This new story has just made me even more disillusioned. As an Ex-Muslim and coming out as an Ex-Muslim could mean me facing the death-penalty from the country which my parents are originally from. I have to be careful, I don't want my name in the papers Ex-Muslim (Amir tut) of so, and so street, has been arrested for saying Islam is X and Muslims found it offensive and reported him to the police. Just madness, individuals need protection from the mob, not the other way around.

Edited by Amirtut

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This new story has just made me even more disillusioned.

Yes, this case does not even have the figment of excuse that something said about a specific group could cause that group to react. The Malicious Communications Act 1988 covers threats too, but it goes way above the bounds by defining this as an offence:

 

a message which is indecent or grossly offensive;
 
...  if ... one of his purposes, in sending it is that it should, ..., cause distress or anxiety to the recipient...

(There is an exception for people responding with offensive speech in some cases.)

 

People often say things that they expect will hurt someone else. So, when does this rise to the level of "causing distress or anxiety". And, what is "indecent"? 

 

If the information in Wikipedia is to be believed, the implementation has already gone too far:

- an 18-year old was arrested for being offensive to an athlete who finished fourth, when he tweeted: "You let your dad down i hope you know that."

- some folks were arrested for posting pictures of burning poppies online

 

By this standard a lot of members of this forum could probably be arrested by the British police.

 

If I were in the U.K. i'd probably try to be far more anonymous online. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, this case does not even have the figment of excuse that something said about a specific group could cause that group to react. The Malicious Communications Act 1988 covers threats too, but it goes way above the bounds by defining this as an offence:

 

 

(There is an exception for people responding with offensive speech in some cases.)

 

People often say things that they expect will hurt someone else. So, when does this rise to the level of "causing distress or anxiety". And, what is "indecent"? 

 

If the information in Wikipedia is to be believed, the implementation has already gone too far:

- an 18-year old was arrested for being offensive to an athlete who finished fourth, when he tweeted: "You let your dad down i hope you know that."

- some folks were arrested for posting pictures of burning poppies online

 

By this standard a lot of members of this forum could probably be arrested by the British police.

 

If I were in the U.K. i'd probably try to be far more anonymous online.

I agree with you, and as a law student, I decided to close my twitter account down. Everything will be deleted. I just can't risk my personal safety/anonymity online, because someone might find my tweets "distressing" and a causing "anxiety" ironic isn't that I feel more free an comfortable using the internet in Pakistan than I do when I am in the UK. It is silly and the Tories are pushing more legislation through which makes it easier for them to have the police on your back for saying something pretty much non-offensive. They're trying to shut down criticism, they want a society, no not a society they want an echo chamber. No dissent.

I'm going to be switching to using Tor and other forms of privacy protection.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The EU has a new form of censorship called "the right to be forgotten" (it involves forcing search engines to remove information about EU citizens, at their request), and they want to take it global.

Google knows it has to comply and remove links from the local versions of its search engine (google.de, google.fr, etc. ), but it doesn't want to remove them from the US version, which of course can easily be accessed from anywhere in the world simply by going to google.com/ncr.

American websites are of course under US jurisdiction, and I would imagine that the United States court system won't allow Europe to censor an American website, but European bureaucrats appear to be willing to try anyway (maybe they're planning to use blackmail, rather than the US court system).

Meanwhile, Google seems to be trying to draw attention to the issue by getting together an advisory group (Jimmy Wales is on it) to back up their case:

http://mashable.com/2015/02/06/right-to-be-forgotten-europe-only/

If you'd rather get you news from a late night talk show (in this case it's actually a decent explanation of what's going on):

 

(I forgot how to embed youtube videos, but if a mod wishes to edit this and embed it, please do)

Edited by JASKN
YouTube video links (as opposed to browser URLs) will embed automatically when copy+pasted

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The whole idea that past indiscretions negate future achievements is silly and un-human! It's hard to believe how insecure and silly are these people who may judge but can't be judged.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A brief perusal of Return of Kings, the site the previous post links to, shows that it is seriously wackadoodle. I wouldn't trust it far.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Reidy said:

A brief perusal of Return of Kings, the site the previous post links to, shows that it is seriously wackadoodle. I wouldn't trust it far.

Yeah, that's a funny website.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Reidy said:

A brief perusal of Return of Kings, the site the previous post links to, shows that it is seriously wackadoodle. I wouldn't trust it far.

Yes, after reading the entire article and the comments I got the same impression.  I admit to being a bit careless linking that particular article on the subject.  Here is a more mainstream article from July: Wolf whistling to become a hate crime: Nottinghamshire police cracks down on misogyny

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In the news today is the story of a cop who stopped a Latino looking woman and she tells him she's afraid to reach for her cell phone because she's seen the video's of police shootings. 

He replies: But you’re not black. Remember, we only shoot black people. Yeah. We only kill black people, right? All the videos you’ve seen, have you seen the black people get killed?

The cop as basically been fired for what amounts to making a joke that some third-party who was not present might find offensive..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The third-party may not have been present during the initial delivery, but it is now privy to any who runs across the report. I recall seeing the headline earlier, but I did not click on it. The playbook for "finding something offensive" is not very objective in my playbook.

Given this, was the cop fired for making a joke that some not present third-party was aware of, or the subsequent CYA for dealing with the report of the story being made public? — not that the latter makes it "ok" either.

Edited by dream_weaver

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I caught CNN while waiting in a lobby, and The Black Guy they had on didn't even understand that the cop was being sarcastic - and the CNN talking heads didn't correct him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
45 minutes ago, JASKN said:

I caught CNN while waiting in a lobby, and The Black Guy they had on didn't even understand that the cop was being sarcastic - and the CNN talking heads didn't correct him.

Yeah, it was clearly a joke. Whether it's a joking matter or not is a separate question, but I think this whole thing is an overreaction regardless.

41 minutes ago, JASKN said:

Meanwhile, this cop remains on active duty after assaulting a nurse bravely doing her job.

Outrageous, but not particularly surprising. Bravo to that nurse, except that I think many people trying to assert their rights (or the rights of others) in the face of the police are playing a very dangerous game. At least we have bodycams, cell phones, etc., now, to better document some of these kinds of incidents.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×