As part of my series of Room 101 posts I took the brilliant suggestion of Censorship from the amazingly talented mco9com at https://healthandgender.wordpress.com
Just to recap what my Room 101 posts are about, for those of you, and there are many, who haven’t bothered to read or got involved with my previous post (thanks for your support)!
Anyway, here goes the recap;
I will be writing about things I wish to banish from the world because I hate or dislike them.
These Room 101 posts will be inspired by subjects, and these subjects can cover anything, basically anything goes. So for example subjects could be; ‘Modern Life’, ‘Going Out’, ‘People Who Are Happy’, ‘Stereotypes’, ‘Banks’ (and so on and so forth).
Whatever subject is chosen by my readers, I will then write a post about and state what it is I hate or dislike about this subject.
Then you, the reader, can decide if I have made a persuasive enough argument to actually banish what annoys me, to Room 101.
OK, reasoning behind for post is now over so let me explain; why I dislike Censorship.
Draconian censorship is becoming an increasingly common tactic among people who have the audacity to consider themselves liberals.
Freedom of expression has always seemed to have its exceptions, never more so than via legally proscribed hate speech.
This hate speech restriction, has encouraged a culture of almost denial. Censorship or restriction of it doesn’t fully address specific issues around intimidation or incitement. The only solution available; enforcing general social regulation – as though this helps change the situation! This muted confusion is why hate speech laws across the world have no consistency, and therefore no real validity, because people don’t know or can’t agree on what actually constitutes as hate speech.
Hate speech laws;
Britain bans abusive, insulting, and threatening speech. Denmark and Canada ban speech that is insulting and degrading. India and Israel ban speech that hurts religious feelings and incites racial and religious hatred. In Holland, it is a criminal offence to deliberately insult a particular group. Australia prohibits speech that offends, insults, humiliates, or intimidates individuals or groups. Germany bans speech that violates the dignity of, or maliciously degrades or defames, a group. And so on. In each case, the law defines hate speech in a different way.
So one response to this legal censorship might be to say: Let us define hate speech much more tightly.
I think, however, that the problem runs much deeper than definition. Hate speech restriction is a means not of tackling bigotry but of re-branding certain, often obnoxious, ideas or arguments as immoral. It is a way of making certain ideas illegitimate without bothering politically to challenge them. And that is dangerous.
Censorship just sweeps the problems under the carpet, but doesn’t solve a thing for society in the long run.
Now you decide what you think.
Should censorship or legally proscribed hate speech be consigned to Room 101???
Comments please and suggestions please!!!