CSM | Why some free-speech advocates ‘stand with hate speech’

via The Christian Science Monitor:


Free Speech is Hate Speech (200x200)Why some free-speech advocates ‘stand with hate speech’

June 2, 2016

The European Union’s new code of conduct aimed at curbing hate speech has some free speech advocates raising concerns of censorship.

Microsoft, Twitter, Facebook, and Google promised on Tuesday to police and remove what the European Commission has deemed a concerning rise in hate speech, but critics are raising ideological, political, and technical objections to the plan.

“It seems these companies were given ‘an offer they couldn’t refuse,’ and rather than take a principled stand, they’ve backed down fearing actual legislation,” human rights advocate Jacob Mchangama, the director of Copenhagen-based think tank Justitia, told the Christian Science Monitor’s Christina Beck earlier this week. “And of course, how will global tech companies now be able to resist the inevitable demands from authoritarian states that they also remove content that these countries determine to be ‘hateful’ or ‘extremist’?”

The Daily Caller’s Scott Greer suggests that government insistence on defining and punishing hate speech threatens the delicate principle of free speech by punishing differences of opinion.

“Those whom express views in line with the prevailing wind of popular opinion are not the ones who need the comfort of the First Amendment,” he wrote in an editorial Thursday. “By instituting hate speech laws, the government declares itself the arbiter of what counts as hate speech, which means they are more likely to go after unwanted opinions.”

The hashtag #IStandWithHateSpeech became a trending topic on Twitter, as free speech advocates insisted the dangers of censorship exceed those of the hate speech itself. (Read More)


Read the full article on The Christian Science Monitor



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