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Every liberal democracy has laws or codes against hate speech except the United States. For constitutionalists, regulation of hate speech violates the First Amendment and damages a free society. Against this absolutist view, Jeremy Waldron argues powerfully that hate speech should be regulated as part of our commitment to human dignity and to inclusion and respect for members of vulnerable minorities.
Causing offense by depicting a religious leader as a terrorist in a newspaper cartoon, for example is not the same as launching a libelous attack on a group s dignity, according to Waldron, and it lies outside the reach of law. But defamation of a minority group, through hate speech, undermines a public good that can and should be protected: the basic assurance of inclusion in society for all members. A social environment polluted by anti-gay leaflets, Nazi banners, and burning crosses sends an implicit message to the targets of such hatred: your security is uncertain and you can expect to face humiliation and discrimination when you leave your home.
Free-speech advocates boast of despising what racists say but defending to the death their right to say it. Waldron finds this emphasis on intellectual resilience misguided and points instead to the threat hate speech poses to the lives, dignity, and reputations of minority members. Finding support for his view among philosophers of the Enlightenment, Waldron asks us to move beyond knee-jerk American exceptionalism in our debates over the serious consequences of hateful speech."
From Robert Spencer, the New York Times bestselling author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to Islam and The Complete Infidel's Guide to ISIS, comes a bold defense of freedom of speech-the single most valuable freedom humanity has, a freedom now endangered world-wide.
FDR's Four Freedoms-Freedom of Speech, Freedom to Worship, Freedom from Want, and Freedom from Fear-were presented to the American people in his 1941 State of the Union address, and they became the inspiration for a second bill of rights, extending the New Deal and guaranteeing work, housing, medical care, and education. Although the bill never was adopted in a legal sense in this country, its principles pervaded the political landscape for an entire generation, including the War on Poverty and the Great Society reforms of the 1960s. Furthermore, the ideas expressed in the Four Freedoms speech inspired the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. But since the late 1970s and early 1980s, these freedoms have been under assault, from administrations of both parties, economic pressures, and finally, the alleged requirements of national security. After 9/11, this process accelerated even more rapidly. The authors address the hard questions of individual freedom versus national security that are on the minds of Americans of all political stripes. They bring together the pivotal events, leaders, policies, and fateful decisions-often pathbreaking, more often ending in folly-that have subverted our constitutional government from its founding. "You reach the inescapable conclusion," the authors write, "that the United States is a warrior nation, has been addicted to war from the start, and is able to sustain its warfare habit only by mugging American taxpayers, and believing in its mission as God's chosen." With a foreword by Barbara Ehrenreich, a journalist, activist, and the author of "Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America."
In recent years, the Danish cartoons affair, the Charlie Hebdo murders and the terrorist attacks in Brussels and Paris have resulted in increasingly strident anti-Islamic speeches by politicians. This raises questions about the limits to freedom of expression and whether this freedom can and should be restricted to protect the religious feelings of believers. This book uses the case law of the European Court of Human Rights to provide a comprehensive analysis of the questions: whether legal prohibitions of religious hate speech violate the right to freedom of expression; and, whether such laws should be used to prosecute politicians and others who contribute to current debates when they use anti-Islam rhetoric. A well-known politician who uses such rhetoric is Dutch politician Geert Wilders. He has been prosecuted twice for hate speech, and was acquitted in the first case and recently convicted in the second. These prosecutions are used to illustrate the issues involved in drawing the line between freedom of expression and religious hate speech. The author argues that freedom of expression of politicians and those contributing to the public debate should not be restricted except in two very limited circumstances: when they incite to hatred or violence and there is an imminent danger that violence will follow or where it stops people from holding or manifesting their religion. Based on this, the author concludes that the European Court of Human Rights should decide, if it is asked to do so, that Wilders conviction for hate speech violates his freedom of expression.
Most liberal societies are deeply committed to a principle of free speech. At the same time, however, there is evidence that some kinds of speech are harmful in ways that are detrimental to important liberal values, such as social equality. Might a genuine commitment to free speech require that we legally permit speech even when it is harmful, and even when doing so is in conflict with our commitment to values like equality? Even if such speech is to be legally permitted, does our commitment to free speech allow us to provide material and institutional support to those who would contest such harmful speech? And finally, and perhaps most importantly, which kinds of speech are harmful in ways that merit response, either in the form of legal regulation or in some other form? This collection explores these and related questions. Drawing on expertise in philosophy, sociology, political science, feminist theory, and legal theory, the contributors to this book investigate these themes and questions. By exploring various categories of speech (including pornography, hate speech, Holocaust denial literature, 'Whites Only' signs), and attending to the precise functioning of speech, the essays contained here shed light on these questions by clarifying the relationship between speech and harm. Understanding how speech functions can help us work out which kinds of speech are harmful, what those harms are, and how the speech in question brings them about. All of these issues are crucially important when it comes to deciding what ought to be done about allegedly harmful speech.
The essays collected in "Persecution and the Art of Writing" all
deal with one problem--the relation between philosophy and
politics. Here, Strauss sets forth the thesis that many
philosophers, especially political philosophers, have reacted to
the threat of persecution by disguising their most controversial
and heterodox ideas.
As digital technology continues to transform the culture of activism and access to information - from revolution in Egypt to reporting on the secret services in Russia - Index on Censorship assesses the ways and means of using new media to get the word out and asks if the United States is internet freedom's best friend. Index on Censorship is an award-winning magazine, devoted to protecting and promoting free expression. International in outlook, outspoken in comment, Index on Censorship reports on free expression violations around the world, publishes banned writing and shines a light on vital free expression issues through original, challenging and intelligent commentary and analysis, publishing some of the world's finest writers. For subscription options visit: www.indexoncensorship.org/subscribe www.indexoncensorship.org: the place to turn for free up-to-the-minute free expression news and comment Winner 2008 Amnesty International Consumer Magazine of the Year
Most people believe that our rights to privacy and free speech are inevitably in conflict. Courts all over the world have struggled with how to reconcile the two for over a century, and the rise of the Internet has made this problem more urgent. We live in an age of corporate and government surveillance of our lives. And our free speech culture has created an anything-goes environment on the web, filled with hurtful and harmful expression and data flows. In Intellectual Privacy, Neil Richards offers a solution that ensures that our ideas and values keep pace with our technologies. Because of the importance of free speech to open societies, he argues that when privacy and free speech truly conflict, free speech should almost always win. But in sharp contrast to conventional wisdom, Richards argues that speech and privacy are only rarely in conflict. True invasions of privacy like peeping toms or electronic surveillance should almost never be protected as "free speech." And critically, Richards shows how most of the law we enact to protect online privacy poses no serious burden to public debate, and how protecting the privacy of our data is not censorship. A timely and provocative book on a subject that affects us all, Intellectual Privacy will radically reshape the debate about privacy and free speech in our digital age.
This resounding defence of the principles of free expression revisits the 'Satanic Verses' uproar of 1989, as well as subsequent incidents such as the Danish cartoons controversy, to argue that the human right of free speech is by no means so secure that it can be taken for granted.
Mark Tushnet presents a concise yet comprehensive overview of free expression law, understood as a form of constitutional law. Confronting the major issues of free expression - speech critical of government, libel law, hate speech regulation, and the emerging challenges posed by new technologies - he evaluates the key questions and potential difficulties for future generations. Contrasting the United States with current law in Europe and elsewhere, Tushnet argues that freedom of expression around the world should reflect deference to legislative judgements, unless those judgements reflect inadequate deliberation or bias, and that much of the existing free expression law is consistent with this view. Key features include: * Comprehensible for both students of law and non-specialist readers interested in freedom of expression from a legal perspective * Viewpoints from multiple legal systems including analysis of decisions made by the US Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights * Explains the two legal doctrinal structures: categorical, rule-bound approaches and standards-based approaches * List of key references for further reading, allowing readers to extend their knowledge of the topic past the advanced introduction. This Advanced Introduction will be an essential foundational text for students of law, as well as those from a political science background who can view freedom of expression from a legal perspective.
Free Expression and Democracy takes on the assumption that limits on free expression will lead to authoritarianism or at least a weakening of democracy. That hypothesis is tested by an examination of issues involving expression and their treatment in countries included on The Economist's list of fully functioning democracies. Generally speaking, other countries allow prohibitions on hate speech, limits on third-party spending on elections, and the protection of children from media influences seen as harmful. Many ban Holocaust denial and the desecration of national symbols. Yet, these other countries all remain democratic, and most of those considered rank more highly than the United States on the democracy index. This book argues that while there may be other cultural values that call for more expansive protection of expression, that protection need not reach the level present in the United States in order to protect the democratic nature of a country.
Freedom of speech is a tradition distinctive to American political culture, and this book focuses on the major debates and discourses that shaped this tradition. Today the American Bill of Rights, with its famous First Amendment, is generally taken for granted, but when James Madison proposed a Bill of Rights in 1789, the reaction among his colleagues in the first Congress was hostile. The book examines how Madison was able to prevail in spite of such opposition. It focuses on discourses connected to the Sedition Act of 1798, which represented a serious threat to freedom of speech and the first Amendment. The author sheds fresh light on key Congressional debates on the Bill of Rights and the Sedition Act by developing and applying an approach to fallacy theory that is suitable to the study of political discourse. He further focuses on criticism of the Madison administration in Federalist newspapers during the War of 1812, arguing that Madison's toleration of such criticism was important in shaping a tradition of free expression in the United States. Efforts to suppress free expression during the Wilson administration represented a serious challenge to this tradition, and the author goes on to employ fallacy theory in examining Congressional discourses for and against Wilson's policy of repression.
When thousands marched through ice and snow against a copyright treaty, their cries for free speech on the Internet shot to the heart of the European Union and forced a political U-turn. The mighty entertainment industries could only stare in dismay, their back-room plans in tatters. This highly original analysis of three attempts to bring in new laws to defend copyright on the Internet - ACTA, Ley Sinde and the Digital Economy Act - investigates the dance of influence between lobbyists and their political proxies and unmasks the sophistry of their arguments. Copyright expert Monica Horten outlines the myriad ways that lobbyists contrived to bypass democratic process and persuade politicians to take up their cause in imposing an American corporate agenda. In doing so, she argues the case for stronger transparency in copyright policy-making. A Copyright Masquerade is essential reading for anyone who cares about copyright and the Internet, and to those who care about freedom of speech and good government.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) proclaimed media literacy a "fundamental human right." How fitting that there is finally a definitive handbook to help students and the general public alike become better informed, more critical consumers of mass media. In these A-Z volumes, readers can learn about methodologies and assessment strategies; get information about sectors, such as community media and media activism; and explore areas of study, such as journalism, advertising, and political communications. The rapid evolution of media systems, particularly digital media, is emphasized, and writings by notable media literacy scholars are included.
In addition to providing a wide range of qualitative approaches to media literacy analysis, the handbook also offers a wealth of media literacy resources. These include lists of media literacy organizations and national media literacy programs, plus relevant books, websites, videos, and articles.
"A liberal society stands on the proposition that we should all
take seriously the idea that we might be wrong. This means we must
place no one, including ourselves, beyond the reach of criticism;
it means that we must allow people to err, even where the error
offends and upsets, as it often will." So writes Jonathan Rauch in
"Kindly Inquisitors, " which has challenged readers for more than
twenty years with its bracing and provocative exploration of the
issues surrounding attempts to limit free speech. In it, Rauch
makes a persuasive argument for the value of "liberal science" and
the idea that conflicting views produce knowledge within
The introduction of FOI in Ireland was a watershed moment in Irish democracy. It gave citizens a right to know, and abolished eighty years of official secrecy that had existed since the foundation of the State. As the new 2014 FOI Act is extended to the gardai and the Central Bank for the first time, this book critically examines the important contribution the legislation has made to the opening up of Irish democracy and society. The book includes important contributions from the Ombudsman and Information Commissioner Peter Tyndall, former minister Eithne FitzGerald and RTE journalist Richard Dowling. It will be a core text for students of politics and public administration, journalism, media and communications and law; and will be an important reference for policy makers and civil and public servants. -- .
In 1920, socialist leader Eugene V. Debs ran for president while serving a ten-year jail term for speaking against America's role in World War I. Though many called Debs a traitor, others praised him as a prisoner of conscience, a martyr to the cause of free speech. Nearly a million Americans agreed, voting for a man whom the government had branded an enemy to his country. In a beautifully crafted narrative, Ernest Freeberg shows that the campaign to send Debs from an Atlanta jailhouse to the White House was part of a wider national debate over the right to free speech in wartime. Debs was one of thousands of Americans arrested for speaking his mind during the war, while government censors were silencing dozens of newspapers and magazines. When peace was restored, however, a nationwide protest was unleashed against the government's repression, demanding amnesty for Debs and his fellow political prisoners. Led by a coalition of the country's most important intellectuals, writers, and labor leaders, this protest not only liberated Debs, but also launched the American Civil Liberties Union and changed the course of free speech in wartime. The Debs case illuminates our own struggle to define the boundaries of permissible dissent as we continue to balance the right of free speech with the demands of national security. In this memorable story of democracy on trial, Freeberg excavates an extraordinary episode in the history of one of America's most prized ideals.
In 1994, artistic freedom pertaining inter alia to literature was enshrined in the South African Constitution. Clearly, the establishment of this right was long overdue compared to other nations within the Commonwealth. Indeed, the legal framework and practices regarding the regulation of literature that were introduced following the nation's transition to a non-racial democracy seemed to form a decisive turning point in the history of South African censorship of literature. This study employs a historical sociological point of view to describe how the nation's emerging literary field helped pave the way for the constitutional entrenchment of this right in 1994. On the basis of institutional and poetological analyses of all the legal trials concerning literature that were held in South Africa during the period 1910-2010, it describes how the battles fought in and around the courts between literary, judicial and executive elites eventually led to a constitutional exceptio artis for literature. As the South African judiciary displayed an ongoing orientation towards both English and American law in this period, the analyses are firmly placed in the context of developments occurring concurrently in these two legal systems.
"The Aesthetics of Free Speech: Rethinking the Public Sphere" is
one of the first books to theoretically explore the relationship
between free speech and the public sphere. By drawing upon Marxist
theory the author, John Michael Roberts, demonstrates how liberal
theorists frequently construct an abstract aesthetic of "rational,"
"cultivated" and "competent" discussion which then serves as a norm
through which certain utterances can be humiliated and excluded
from participating fully within the public sphere. However, the
author also shows how excluded utterances develop their own
aesthetic of free speech and how this aesthetic then comes back to
haunt the bourgeois public sphere.
Don't Stop the Music
Read about the songs they tried to ban, the musicians stopped for playing live, and the singers who are put on trial in the bumper Smashed Hits issue of Index.
What a Carve Up
Tyrannosaurus Rex and the Clash manager Peter Jenner on hidden censorship in the music biz.
Cairo, Beirut, Amman: Musician Khyam Allami travel the middle east
Jazz star Gilad Atzmon on Charlie Parker
Kaya Genc on the singers they try to silence
My Life is Under Threat
Lapiro de Mbanga speaks to Index from his Prison Cell
Chaza Charafeddine's Unmissable Divine Comedy Exhibition
Index on Censorship is an award-winning magazine, devoted to protecting and promoting free expression. International in outlook, outspoken in comment, Index on Censorship reports on free expression violations around the world, publishes banned writing and shines a light on vital free expression issues through original, challenging and intelligent commentary and analysis, publishing some of the world's finest writers.
Forthcoming December 2010: Issue 39/4,
Writers in Prison
For subscription options visit: http: //ioc.sagepub.com
www.indexoncensorship.org: the place to turn for free up-to-the-minute free expression news and comment
Winner 2008 Amnesty International Consumer Magazine of the Year
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