Hate Speech Is a Myth Used to Steal Basic Freedoms
“Hate speech” as a crime should not exist. We ought to stop using the term, and treat it as what it is: A political myth, a fake unicorn. When you look at it closely it’s really a Shetland pony tricked out in costume, with a broomstick strapped to its snout.
We ought to repeal every law that criminalizes speech on this kind of ground. Then toss out laws that impose extra penalties on ordinary crimes because of a so-called “hate-based” motive. Whatever exceptions we reluctantly make to free speech should be based on something else: On the immediate threat of further crimes. We should not punish motives, or criminalize opinions.
The Velvet Glove on the Iron Fist
Elites across the West have decided to squash political speech on critical public issues. They have made it a criminal act in many once-free countries to ask the most basic questions. Or debate essential policies. In each case, the steel fist silencing dissent comes wrapped in the velvet glove: “We’re fighting hate.”
No you’re not. You hate to fight. You don’t want to have to contest with those who disagree with the policies imposed by your oligarchical governments. Or worse, by the appointed commissions that meet in secret and override elected governments — such as the European Union’s. You can’t win open arguments in the light of day. If you could, you wouldn’t need to arrest opposing speakers, or censor social media, or ban people from your country, based on their opinions.
Police do not consider truth a defense against charges of “hate speech.”
Dissolving the People and Electing a New One
It is blindingly obvious to voters in most west European countries: Governments are dissatisfied with their voting populations, so they’ve chosen to dissolve them, importing new ones. Epidemics of crime, violence, and turmoil have followed in the wake of Muslim immigrants, wherever they appear. These replicate cultural practices in Muslim countries. Some of them follow directly from literal readings of Islamic scripture, precedent, and law. Or was there an epidemic of child-marriage, female genital mutilation, mass rape and harassment of women going on in Sweden, Germany, the Netherlands, or Britain, throughout the 1970s, before the Muslim influx?
Just asking such a question is practically illegal in such countries. Sweden kneecaps its police by forbidding physical descriptions of criminal suspects. Liberals there just couldn’t stand hearing, over and over again, the words “Middle-Eastern male” broadcast on television. British media coolly sanitize incessant reports of crimes by Muslims from Pakistan by calling them “Asian.” As if the public thinks that the culprits in massive rape-grooming gangs were Taiwanese medical students.
By writing these words, I may well have made it impossible for me to ever visit a number of countries. I might never get to see Sweden. Or taste the beers in Brussels. Or go back to Westminster Abbey, where once I prayed at the tomb of St. Edward the Confessor.
Do you think I’m kidding? Last week, two totally non-violent political activists, American Brittany Pettibone and Austrian Martin Sellner, were arrested at a London airport. Their crime? Coming into the country to speak about Muslim immigration. In Britain and several other countries, it emerged, police do not consider truth a defense against such charges.
That’s right. You can stand up in Britain and try to say something about issues of public policy. It can be true. You could be reading crime statistics. Or verses from the Quran. Or speeches by radical imams who call for imposing sharia upon the country. Who want to execute adulterers, homosexuals, and converts from Islam to Christianity. And you could go to jail for it — if police think that your motive, or that the likely effect, would be to “incite racial hatred.” Not that Islam is a race. But didn’t we already establish that facts don’t matter?
Sweden kneecaps its police by forbidding physical descriptions of criminal suspects. Liberals there just couldn’t stand hearing, over and over again, the words “Middle-Eastern male” broadcast on television.
See Breitbart’s report on the latest development. British patriot and critic of radical Islam Tommy Robinson led a protest against the quashing of free speech in Britain. (Robinson lives under constant death threats from Muslims for his criticism of sharia.) He gathered supporters from all across the country at Speaker’s Corner in London — a famous site for public dissent. He took the speech which Sellner had hoped to deliver, and read it himself. It’s a stirring statement. Go read it yourself.
Muslims Assault their Critics, in London
And look at the reaction. Here’s video of Muslim demonstrators trying to shut Robinson down. [Profane language.]
Set Speech Free
We need to reject completely the concept of “hate speech.” We can keep our freedom and social peace by restricting only the following kinds of messages:
- Those that contain an immediate threat of violence or other illegal activity.
- Those that call for violent actions against peaceful citizens.
- Statements that call for the violent overthrow of the government.
- Those that contain libel, or legally privileged private information, or expose individuals to threats of illegal violence. (For instance, when leftists broadcast the home addresses of activists like Robinson, or the schools attended by the children of activists like Pamela Geller.)
Any other kind of speech, including genuinely stupid and hateful statements about whole races, or the Holocaust, or other topics that wound people’s feelings? That should be countered with better speech. The truth can win out in the light of day. When the state arrogates to itself the role of morally policing citizens’ speech, it makes martyrs of crackpots, while silencing needed arguments.
Let some fool stand up and denounce all members of a given racial group. Let others stand up and rebuke him, and let him reap the backlash in his life and career. We don’t need cops to drag him off and make it seem — to at least some people — that he must be spilling the beans, or else no one would bother to arrest him. As for religion, just as any person must be free to evangelize for his faith, his creed should equally be subject to refutation and criticism. The same for sexual practices, and political opinions.
Shouting “Fire!” in a Burning Theater
At this point, someone will voice the usual tired objection: You can’t shout “Fire!” in a crowded theater. To which the answer should be: You can when it’s on fire. Or you should be able to. Whole nations in Europe are in fact catching fire right now. And their governments won’t admit it. So instead of fighting the pyromaniacs in their midst, who spread religious-based hatred like gasoline through ancient streets, those government are arresting the volunteer fire brigades. Importing radical, impossible-to-assimilate religious zealots by the millions, then silencing all critics? That’s a sure road to civil war.