sobota, 29 października 2016

PCShit - Freedom of Speech and Hate Speech

Yesterday, under the entry PSShit - Facebook and nationalists, I led a discussion on the freedom of speech, its borders, censorship, and hate speech. Topic so vast and controversial that I decided to return to it, expand it, and perhaps shut a few inaccuracies ... or add fuel to the fire J


Freedom of Speech


Let's start by defining what this freedom is. Well, freedom of speech is the right to publicly express their opinion and views, as well as its respect for the other (Wiki). This right is often limited in national legislation, but for discussion at this moment, let's stay with the basic definition. Because this definition does not include the terms of plausibility or factuality of comments, opinions or views. So, in a general sense - freedom of speech allows for public presentation of any, even the most stupid, offensive or meaningless opinions and views. Freedom of speech guarantees, on a general level, the right nationalists to voice their brain-dead views, allows zealots go after atheists (and vice versa) or to criticize anyone by anyone.

Spewed views and opinions, by definition, do not need to have the actual ground and substantive. So, reject or censor speech that reason - lack of merit, is a violation of this definition. Of course, special provisions, exclusions in laws introduce confusion, which leads to, from my perspective, insoluble conflict.

The basic problem is the placement of in the regulations the soft concepts - hate, dignity, honor or reputation. This notion, which have the feature that their perception is subjective. Something that for me is offensive, violate my dignity, for someone might be meaningless. Likewise, another thing for me would be incitement to hatred, because I have other boundaries of emotion and I define it differently. Hence the confusion and problems in the discussions, but also judicial decisions. In my opinion, all regulations containing this type of formulation should be excluded from the Criminal Code and in the best case - transferred to Civilian. Because if law includes the concept, which is possible to fully define only on the individual level, its place is in civil liability, not criminal.

Therefore, what we do with so-called hate speech? Let's see.

Hate speech

We wait until he will use hate speech

As I mentioned in the entry PSShit - Facebook and nationalists, hate speech, it is - negative emotional expression, arising due to alleged or actual affiliation to the group, created on the basis of prejudice; all forms of expression which spread, incite, promote or justify racial hatred, religious, xenophobia, anti-Semitism or other forms of hatred stemming from intolerance, including intolerance expressed by aggressive nationalism and ethnocentrism, discrimination and hostility against minorities, migrants and persons of foreign origin (Wiki).

So, to close at interpretation resistant form of this definition, we should exclude all words expressing the emotional level. Or expressly and clearly define them. Otherwise, all we will get is a chance that something else for someone will be the negative emotion or hate. Especially when the group is based on the attitude of the "victim." Then the usual reluctance to express opinions, can be subsumed under hate and plugged in under the definition of criminal regulations. And for critical speech, someone would go to jail.

Because if I say >> the modern feminist movement, is loud and stupid screaming of women who stopped to look no anyone else but themselves, and they do nothing other than antagonizing sexes and fight for privileges for themselves <<, it expressed the opinion, the view, dislike or hatred? Because I fulfill the requirements of negative emotions; I generalize the whole movement, that I can be accused of acting under the influence of prejudices and stereotypes. This is hate speech or not? If we cannot clearly and unambiguously answer this question, then something is wrong with the definition.

On the second level we have a little monster. It's about group feelings. Hurt the feelings of a social group, its dignity and honor. There is no such thing. Members of the group may feel similar for a particular opinion or belief, but the attempt to thrown themselves into one basket - Jews, blacks or immigrants against some of words is the stereotyping and can be considered as building prejudice. From my point of view, if a representative of a group, which said that the statement offends the community, it does not do any good for "their" people. This puts a brick to the wall of the stereotype on the basis of their own feelings. And close the circle. Because in response to a stupid and offensive utterance, give reason to another notice. If I tell >> Immigrants from the Middle East only want our money, labor, women and Islamize our country <<, and someone will answer in their defense, that they only flee from the cruelty of war, I can draw another opinion that immigrants are persons >> do not care about their country, because they prefer to get away, than to fight for the good of their nation <<. And we can cultivate this ping-pong long. Only that reality has nothing to do with it. Because reasons to escape from the country afflicted in a conflict can be as many as many people are running out. And throwing all into one pot, both by people criticizing and defending a particular group, only intensifies the avalanche of prejudices and stereotypes. And every prejudices, especially those that are confirmed by representatives of the group, may be the spark of hatred for someone or received as a violation of the dignity by someone else. Even such a discussion is better than what propose SJWs (Social Justice Warriors, fighters for social justice).

Censorship, gag and penalization


My reader in the previous entry raised the argument that, if in the thirties, someone censored Nazis, he could not come to the atrocities of World War II. I see the two problems.

First of all - the reality-30s cannot be applied to the current situation of the media, especially with our level of access to information.

Second - censorship will only withdraw the notion of ideology to the second or third circuit and only helps content available, validating them. Especially if you are antiestablishment or controversial content. So the Nazis just had a bigger conquest to accumulate a large number of people needed to do what they did, but they were determined and probably censorship would be used as a trump card in their hands.

Let's take a simple example of an Internet troll. Blocking such an individual at a given site is giving  troll a favor. Gaining a reputation for effective and dangerous. In a closed trolls environment, that ban or block on a given site is a reason to raise the status and ennoblement. Troll creates additional accounts will continue to do his thing, but it will go to a place with large group of others like him in order to get the ennoblement. In the case of national profiles on Facebook, which has been blocked, it worked a similar phenomenon. Nationalists moved on Twitter and other social media, and organize around the attitude of the "victims of leftist facebook". Who is helped? Only them. Because they gain followers who will buy the attitude of the "victim of the system."

Let's take another, hypothetical situation (although maybe not so hypothetical) that my blog, for allegedly spreading hate speech is blocked. I can do two things. Trying to prove that what I do is not hate speech in criminal, civil or any other proceedings, or build in relation to the blocking, a group of people supporting me, and that they can call pressure on media, wherever possible, to force the restoration of the blog. What I find more profitable? Of course, the second option because I can gather around more audience and vast majority will stay with me. Especially if we win this battle.
This is what effect censorship has today. With Internet, nothing is gone for good, and platforms to promote content are countless. So what can we do in case of hate speech?

The only option is to confront, debate and exposing cretinism of such concepts. Pointing holes in the concepts, ridiculing them, and bringing out mistakes is a better strategy than censorship. Individuals and groups calling for blocking, criminalization or censor any content in today's reality and social media - helps authors of such content, show their weakness and putting themselves in the position of victims of hate speech, they put their opponents to the position of victims of censorship. And wind up mutual spiral that only causes accumulation of more and more crowd around both sides, escalation and emotional charge jostling for the "greater victim" instead of rational discussion.

If a fucking racist will say that you have to hang socialists and blacks on the trees, reporting it to law enforcement does not solve the problem, but we show lack arguments to the debate, to overthrow such statements show how stupid they are.

If PiS supporter will tell you that we need to gas lefties, it is sufficient to point out that the program 500+ is removed from socialist or leftist practices. Thus, for example SLD sits quietly and does not criticize too much of PiS social policies. "Can you stand up or lying down, I have a brat I get the money." Debate is always better than engaging vague and susceptible to interpretations laws of the Criminal Code.

To sum up.


According to me, hate speech is bastard child of political correctness. And as related, are gags for freedom of speech, defined as the freedom of expression of opinions and views. The only sensible tool in cases of violation of dignity, good name or damage to feelings can be civil proceedings, if the tools within the freedom of speech itself have been exhausted, and these acts are taking place in the public space. The use of criminal laws, censorship of content, blockades and other actions penalizing controversial statements, serves no one. Because they show the weakness of the applicants and often validate the legitimacy of idiotic trolls and usual morons.

PS.
This is my first translation of my blog post, so don't be to bitchy about mistakes i've made. You grammar nazis :)