Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
I used to be an absolutist; believe it or not!!!
Freedom of speech forever; no holds barred.
I have cooled it over the years.
We do not have anything close to absolute freedom of speech of course and we never did in this country.
I grew up with censorship on the B & W, the radio, in the classroom and in the newspapers.
Right now the Texas Board of Education is attempting to bring our textbooks back to the wonderland of the fifties. Slavery and segregation are downplayed. Fundamentalist nonsense forms a basis for science texts.
But would we really wish third graders to read about abortions or jihadists or street gangs?
No, our internal Adlerian parent would tell us that children must be cared for and protected from certain ‘adult’ secrets. Of course the eight year old living in a slum patrolled by gangs would immediately understand that there is a reality and a scholastic fantasy.
The ACLU would protect the rights of communists and NAZIs to speak their minds. Even forty years ago I thought that the resources used by this stalwart of free speech might be better used to feed hungry children or sue the television networks for lying to us every goddamn day.
The FCC has so many regulations but it is easy to see that few are enforced with Limbaugh and Beck sometimes calling for open rebellion by their constituencies.
I watched this strange television show called Capri and every other word is frack. Frack this, frack that, no frackin way, dirty motherfracker….hahahhah. I could not watch the show any longer because the frackin was getting in the way of my thinking.
I assume the FCC had something to do with all of this silliness because why else would the writers of Capri sound so frickin idiotic?
I recall the first time I ever heard the sound of a toilet flushing on All In the Family. Hilarious.
It seems over the last ten years or so the word ‘ass’ came into play. First it referred to the donkey, then the behind. Now the dramas say asshole like it is no biggie.
The point for the FCC, I assume is to protect our children when they are not out on the porch watching gangland shootings.
The First Amendment constitutionally protects speech that other countries might classify as hate speech, leading University of Virginia law professor Frederick Schauer to describe the U.S. as a “free press outlier.”
“In contrast to this international consensus that various forms of hate speech need to be prohibited by law and that such prohibition creates no or few free-speech issues, the United States remains steadfastly committed to the opposite view,” Schauer writes in a paper titled “The Exceptional First Amendment.”
Many Americans on both the left and right view any attempt to curtail hate speech is a step toward tyranny. Salon.com columnist Glenn Greenwald, a constitutional lawyer, has slammed Canada and Europe for punishing citizens who “express offensive or otherwise prohibited political views.”
Others think U.S. speech protections go too far. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has argued for the curtailment of the First Amendment to curb “radical Islam.” And Sabria Jawhar, the former Jeddah bureau chief the Saudi Gazette, writes that the U.S. media has fanned the “flames of Western extremism” by describing Arabs as “barbarians” and Islam a “crazy ideology.” http://www.aolnews.com/world/article/can-curtailing-speech-hinder-genocide/19701738
Of course with the government listening in, when they are not looking in, freedom of speech becomes a pretty important right.
Holocaust denial is illegal in 16 countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, and Switzerland. The European Union’s Framework decision on Racism and Xenophobia states that denying or grossly trivialising “crimes of genocide” should be made “punishable in all EU Member States”. Such legislation has been controversial in Spain: in October 2007, Spain’s Constitutional Court declared Holocaust denial falls under freedom of speech, but justifying the Holocaust was still illegal. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_speech
You can take an entire year of study at most major universities in order to come to some conclusion as to when ‘speech’ becomes ‘conduct’. Talk about angels dancing on the head of a pin.
CHICAGO, June 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Hal Turner, an intermittent Internet radio talk show host and blogger, was arrested today by FBI agents at his home in North Bergen, N.J., on a federal complaint filed in Chicago alleging that he made Internet postings threatening to assault and murder three federal appeals court judges in Chicago in retaliation for their recent ruling upholding handgun bans in Chicago and a suburb.
Internet postings on June 2 and 3 proclaimed “outrage” over the June 2, 2009, handgun decision by Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook and Judges Richard Posner and William Bauer, of the Chicago-based 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, further stating, among other things: “Let me be the first to say this plainly: These Judges deserve to be killed.” The postings included photographs, phone numbers, work address and room numbers of these judges, along with a photo of the building in which they work and a map of its location.
Turner, 47, of North Bergen, N.J., was arrested this morning after FBI agents went to his residence to execute a search warrant. He was charged with threatening to assault and murder three federal judges with intent to retaliate against them for performing official duties in a criminal complaint filed today in U.S. District Court in Chicago. He is scheduled to have an initial court appearance at 12:30 p.m. tomorrow (Thursday) before U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael A. Shipp in U.S. District Court in Newark.
I did a blog on this Turner character while Café was still running and the post did not receive much activity. I actually listened to several of these internet-radio programs and found them fascinating; all these white people using the N word within every single paragraph if not sentence. I certainly saw a link between Turner’s type of hate speech during his call in show and Limbaugh’s hate speech during his call in show. You see, Limbaugh just takes out the n word. Otherwise there is no real difference.
But Turner’s real sin was actually publishing the addresses of these Federal Judges. Supposedly he had actually called for people in his listening audience—which seems to be quite extensive throughout the U.S.—to go kill the robed hooligans.
Rush can tell twenty million people to go to Denver and riot and turn over cars and start fires. http://www.infowars.com/limbaugh-calls-for-riots-at-denver-dnc/
Beck can tell people to kill Michael Moore and he would pay for the bullet.
After three trials, a jury convicted Internet radio host and blogger Hal Turner of threatening the lives of three U.S. appeals-court judges.
Turner, 48, was found guilty by a federal jury in Brooklyn, New York, of a single count of threatening in Internet postings to assault and murder the judges because he disagreed with one of their rulings. That was the only count he faced. The jury deliberated for less than two hours and the judge ordered Turner taken into custody. Two previous juries had deadlocked.
“There goes the First Amendment for everybody,” Turner’s mother, Kathy Diamond, said after the verdict. “Since when does words mean you threatened to kill somebody?”
Three times they had to try this bastard. Two hung juries over a period of a couple years and finally he was convicted; which means there will be more appeals that will go on for years and years.
Good luck Hal, I mean Federal Judges are going to decide your fate on appeal.
Turner used his Web site to post the judges’ names, as well as their photographs and work addresses, and a map of their courthouse.