Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#21

Post by CaptHayfever » Tue Mar 06, 2018 6:07 pm

^Doxxing can be tried as accessory to any crime that it leads to, like assault, identity theft, et cet.
Swatting is already a few different crimes; it's filing a false police report, slander/libel, and possibly murder/manslaughter/conspiracy to commit murder/manslaughter, depending on the results.

If a deranged mob strings me up over what I say, sure it sucks both for me & for the concept of free expression, but it's already illegal for them to do so, regardless of the First Amendment.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#22

Post by I am nobody » Tue Mar 06, 2018 6:24 pm

^The fact that something is illegal doesn't mean it can be used as intimidation. We'd have solved organized crime centuries ago if victims could just say, "But Mr. Mafia! Breaking my legs is illegal!" and there'd suddenly be no consequences for having stood up to them. If the person that swats you gets arrested, great, they deserve it, but that's not going untraumatize your children, and you're not going to be resurrected once the mob that strung you up goes to jail.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#23

Post by Shane » Tue Mar 06, 2018 7:08 pm

That's one of the problems with social media. People will make sure to get you fired/killed/whatever other bad thing because they think you said something mean. Then you have the companies that are damned no matter what they do, which is real money and real people's jobs that are being screwed with to try to prove a point about the latest daily cause. The sort of thing people would not do in real life because a civilized society does not behave that way, they will do constantly behind the anonymity of a computer screen. Regardless, such behavior is still generally legal, and somehow tolerated by companies that regularly censor views they don't like for bullying and harassment.
Now I know there's a reason you shouldn't blame others when you do something wrong, and that reason is: you might get caught and have to apologize to a bunch of dumb peasants.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#24

Post by I REALLY HATE PRESENTS! » Tue Mar 06, 2018 8:26 pm

Bomby wrote:
Tue Mar 06, 2018 10:47 am
What this whole debate is missing is that freedom of speech includes the freedom to criticize another person's speech. The whole discussion on freedom of speech seems to be forgetting that. You are still legally allowed to say anything you want, unless it is a very specific threat of violence.

Furthermore, any organization has the right to set its own rules. You agree to company policy before employment. You agree to the terms of service before you can utilize a platform to express yourself. Until the government locks you up for saying something other than a specific violent threat, your freedom of speech isn't being infringed upon.

Freedom of speech is not freedom from criticism. If you say something offensive, people are going to be offended. As much as it's your right to say something, it's another person's right to criticize it. Criticism does not equal censorship.
Nobody is forgetting that criticism is allowed, but as I'm sure you're aware, that tactic is often used to shut down opposing views under the veil of "criticism." More often than not, it's really just punishment. Ian and Shane made some valid points on the matter, actually.

A company does have the right to set its own rules, but what you're asking for (or condoning, I suppose, since they seem to already have it) is to give them more power than they deserve. The government should protect free speech by putting limits on what any company can do to punish the exercise of that freedom. People have been fired for expressing their views completely apart from their work, for example, and that's unacceptable. A lot of people try to pretend like that's the same as telling your boss that you're going to **** his wife six ways from Sunday and expecting not to be fired, but it's not the same and to assert otherwise is disingenuous.

It boils down to people trying to muddle the concept of free speech by arbitrarily limiting it to the First Amendment. I can just link to this topic for my thoughts on that but I will cite a bit from the link to an article that I posted in the opening (it's a good article, I suggest reading through it in its entirety): http://www.vgf.com/viewtopic.php?f=182&t=98971
What I think happened is a lot of left-leaning internet users who normally support the tenets of free speech suddenly realized what true free speech looks like. It doesn’t mean “people bravely and courageously saying things I already agree with”, it means others are perfectly within their rights to express some pretty hateful opinions, and thanks to the internet, they now have the ability to broadcast those opinions to a huge audience of fellow *******. So it’s not surprising that many are starting to downplay the importance of free speech, and pedantically reciting the letter of the law as if that’s the only thing that matters.
It's pretty accurate, actually. Criticism can effectively become censorship, with enough threat of this "criticism" it effectively does equal censorship, all because someone was offended. Now free speech is put into a box labeled "First Amendment" and political correctness is raised above it.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#25

Post by е и ժ е я » Sat Mar 10, 2018 8:10 am

I come in here and find people whining that someone criticised them. That's actually a symptom of free speech, soak in the good vibes you whiners.
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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#26

Post by Christmas PDN » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:00 am

The only place I feel that freedom of speech or expression is legitimately threatened is on college campuses. You keep hearing stories about someone or another being disallowed from speaking or coming on campuses. While I suppose that some of these schools are private institutions to some extent, the whole point of going to a college/university is to engage in discourse to broaden your perspective of the world.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#27

Post by I REALLY HATE PRESENTS! » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:12 am

I don't think anyone is whining in this topic. Regardless, rebutting criticism is a part of free speech as well, but I find it ironic that people who have contempt for free speech exercise it the most. It's very similar to the second amendment in that regard.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#28

Post by I am nobody » Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:15 pm

Random User wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:00 am
The only place I feel that freedom of speech or expression is legitimately threatened is on college campuses. You keep hearing stories about someone or another being disallowed from speaking or coming on campuses. While I suppose that some of these schools are private institutions to some extent, the whole point of going to a college/university is to engage in discourse to broaden your perspective of the world.
That's largely true of attacks from the left, but let's not forget that GamerGate was only a few years ago. For as much as the internet right-wing suddenly loves free speech, plenty of their number resorted to intimidation tactics when the "SJWs" supposedly came for their games, and condemnations of that behavior were often somewhat less than unequivocal.


Given that many of those people are likely to be Trump supporters, there is a certain wonderful irony in him turning on violent games just about the minute it became politically convenient. I don't support it, obviously, but there's at least a mild amount of amusement mixed in with the awful.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#29

Post by New! Tazy Ten » Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:09 pm

All people had to do was stop shouting about making men obsolete and creating white ethnostates during Smash Brothers and this would be over by now. Damnit. [Edit: Gosh sounds sarcastic and I'm not being sarcastic.]

Both Trump and Hillary have always thought video games equaled violence (from what I remember they were pretty vocal about it way back, but for Hillary it was more recent) and it's one of the reasons I thought that whole thing two years back was lose-lose. Shoot me in the arm or shoot me in the leg: It still hurts but I get to chose between having one arm or one leg in a cast. Choice!

It's not going to go anywhere anyway. Supreme Court already weighed in on that whole thing years ago. It's just a scapegoat to distract from other scapegoats. Unless they try to tax media I don't see people doing anything but gesture wildly to their friends.

I will agree that it is satisfying seeing extremists twist in the end as they suddenly have to switch sides because Trump said something I would usually find on some editorial think piece. People are calling them all out for hypocrisy, and rightly so. It comes with the closed off world view of "Pro-Trump or Anti-Trump". World is more than one man, you know.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#30

Post by Shane » Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:52 pm

The problem on college campuses is going to spill over. People go there to learn, expand, and grow up, but that is not allowed to happen. Here's a point of view the same as the last one you heard, and here's a coloring book and therapy goat in case your feelings are hurt anyway.

Supporter does not mean blind, or at least it shouldn't. People know Trump may be under the Republican ticket, but he's not part of the establishment ideology and about as far left as you'll get from the right. Most of his supporters accept that he's probably going to piss them off at some point.
Now I know there's a reason you shouldn't blame others when you do something wrong, and that reason is: you might get caught and have to apologize to a bunch of dumb peasants.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#31

Post by Christmas PDN » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:05 pm

I am nobody wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:15 pm
Random User wrote:
Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:00 am
The only place I feel that freedom of speech or expression is legitimately threatened is on college campuses. You keep hearing stories about someone or another being disallowed from speaking or coming on campuses. While I suppose that some of these schools are private institutions to some extent, the whole point of going to a college/university is to engage in discourse to broaden your perspective of the world.
That's largely true of attacks from the left, but let's not forget that GamerGate was only a few years ago. For as much as the internet right-wing suddenly loves free speech, plenty of their number resorted to intimidation tactics when the "SJWs" supposedly came for their games, and condemnations of that behavior were often somewhat less than unequivocal.


Given that many of those people are likely to be Trump supporters, there is a certain wonderful irony in him turning on violent games just about the minute it became politically convenient. I don't support it, obviously, but there's at least a mild amount of amusement mixed in with the awful.
Yeah I'm not forgetting GamerGate or any of that either, hence my fairly neutral stance on it. I don't think any one side is more guilty of this than the other.

I don't know if it'll spill over out of college campuses, mostly because I think a vast majority of people just don't really care one way or another unless it directly affects them. Most of the people at my school don't bother to attend speeches about these topics. They're a bit more busy hanging out or doing something else. The same was true of the last school I went to. I'm almost certain it's true of most others.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#32

Post by I REALLY HATE PRESENTS! » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:11 pm

I am not seeing a strong correlation between GamerGate and free speech. Can someone elaborate?

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#33

Post by Christmas PDN » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:18 pm

Threatening to kill Anita Sarkeesian at a speaking event was what I assume IAN was referring to.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#34

Post by I REALLY HATE PRESENTS! » Sun Mar 11, 2018 12:02 am

I don't think pointing at criminals is a very effective way of arguing that the right is essentially hypocritical on the matter.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#35

Post by I am nobody » Sun Mar 11, 2018 6:24 am

I disagree. Partly because some of those criminals are almost certainly among the people up in arms about protests from the left, and partly because, as I said, many GG supporters, who I think it is safe to say were mostly from the right, were unwilling to seriously condemn that behavior. I saw a lot more "they're probably faking it!", "we don't have an ID card!", etc, than I did any other response.

But, if you don't want to focus on that, I could just as easily point to how the Bush and Trump administrations, as well as several state governments, have used gag orders to prevent climate agencies from using or discussing certain words and phrases. That may be within the letter of the law, but it's hardly the behavior of proud defenders of free speech.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#36

Post by I REALLY HATE PRESENTS! » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:29 am

...But they're still criminals. In most societies punishment doesn't just end with time served, criminals are often ousted from groups as a result of their deeds because they don't fall in line with their values. The left doesn't seem to have such a system outside of going against the echo chamber (that one will do it), while the right doesn't support bad behavior. You don't see, say, Ben Shapiro ever once condone or justify harassment, vandalism, etc, but prominent figures on the left do. In fact, sometimes they'll go even further with their agenda; rather than just passively condoning illegal or immoral activities they'll openly engage in it themselves. Libby Shaaf, a friggin' mayor, is a great, recent example for you. And, of course, she is defended.

Also, for the record, what those administrations did seems despicable in my opinion. Anyone defending that would be a hypocrite as far as I can tell.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#37

Post by I am nobody » Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:09 am

I don't see how supporting sanctuary cities has any relevance here. Even granting that that's a crime, defending criminal behavior isn't inherently contradictory with free speech. It'd be kind of awkward for the US if it was, considering that revolutions are considered crimes in most jurisdictions.

Another thing from that article:
Schaaf has received substantial pushback and criticism, including threats of violence, for her stance. And ICE spokesman James Schwab denied that the agency conducts "sweeps or raids that target aliens indiscriminately." But the mayor has stood firm, saying that "many decisions that I make have risks and rewards" and that she did not regret issuing the alert.
They may not be endorsed by any major politicians, but it's problematic that the death threat people will reliably turn up in discussions of the left doing anything even a little controversial. Given that death threats are just about the most definitively anti-free speech thing you can do without committing physical violence, I would expect a bit more than merely not endorsing threats or harassment from people claiming to be free speech champions.

As for the climate bit, it's great that you oppose it (that's not sarcasm, it's just impossible to say this without sounding sarcastic), but where is everyone else?

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#38

Post by I REALLY HATE PRESENTS! » Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:16 am

^ I'm sure you're aware that my point wasn't about sanctuary cities, but about breaking the law (obstruction of justice in this example). In fact, I don't know why you said that but then went right into what my real point was.

If defending criminal behavior isn't contradictory with free speech then wouldn't that apply to the GamerGate issue brought up? Even if GamerGate supporters were unwilling to "seriously condemn that behavior" as you said, it shouldn't matter because "defending criminal behavior isn't contradictory with free speech," right? How doesn't that undermine your own point? I think that it would be rather inconsistent for one to defend criminal behavior and yet also say that one supports free speech because infringing on free speech is often a crime, and is always a moral crime. It would be like a murderer condemning theft, a hollow sentiment.

Death threats are far from an exclusive tool to any side, liberals simply cry about it more. For every Brianna Wu being a drama queen about it there's a conservative who barely mentions it in passing, like Milo Yiannopoulos. He had to cancel events because of it but you don't see him constantly crusading about the issue. Speaking of Wu, pretty sure there was proof of fakery there, but I don't want to detract too much.

About climate, I don't know. I know politicians and businessmen have stakes in the issue but I don't know what the average climate deniers gain from it. I figure they must really believe it is bs. *shrugs*

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#39

Post by I am nobody » Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:57 am

I said that defending criminal behavior isn't inherently contradictory with defending free speech, not that it isn't contradictory period. Opposing immigration raids and making death threats are not equivalent, even again granting that both are criminal. One has no relevance whatsoever to anyone's freedom of expression, and the other is explicitly intended to silence an opposing view. I don't agree that defending one crime (which implies you don't believe it actually *is* a crime) makes it inconsistent to condemn another crime.

And yes, there are death threats from the left as well, but I never claimed otherwise. I've only started referring to the left and the right because they were brought up in other posts - my stance has always been that freedom of expression is under attack from extremists on both sides. Maybe one side started it, maybe one side is more of a threat, but it doesn't really matter. It's everyone's problem.

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Re: Free Speech and the Necessity of Discomfort

#40

Post by Christmas PDN » Tue Mar 13, 2018 12:22 pm

Death threats may be criminal, but I thought it was pretty obvious they are still a way of snuffing out free speech that someone doesn't wanna hear or have spread.

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