Thursday, August 3, 2017

What Is Free Speech?

Does freedom of speech mean the freedom to be heard? Does it mean the freedom to explore ideas that are wrong in the opinion of the majority or specific groups? Does it include the right to call other people "nigger" or "faggot" or "Nazi" or "bitch" or "fuckhead"? Does it include the right to discuss the history of those words or what they used to mean? Does it include the right to discuss similarities amongst the people who use those terms? Can I at least discuss whether or not whites can say "nigger" or just blacks? My regular readers know that I do not use such terms in this blog; but, can I if it helps us to ask other questions? Am I free to bring up these issues? How can I talk honestly about the KKK if I don't use these words to explain what they believe?

What is freedom of speech and why does it matter? Can we outlaw the letter N or F? What if racists and homophobes started just using the letter instead of saying the word, could we outlaw that and would we want to outlaw a letter? You cannot outlaw a concept or a belief set. You cannot make it illegal to hate blacks or gays. You cannot legislate the ten commandments. How do you make it illegal for people to love Satan or a rock more than God? You cannot even legislate the first commandment because you cannot outlaw beliefs or love.

YouTube is attempting to regulate what people can discuss and they want to use computer programs to do it. Billionaires intend to regulate what you can say over the internet by telling computers what you can and cannot say. After the programs are written they will tell you it is fair because the computer is choosing what is good and bad. Computers cannot make moral decisions. They have no soul and do not have to live with the consequences because they have no life, they are just formulas being run by calculators, nothing more.

More books were sold last year as computer files than as physical books. More e-mails are sent in a day than are physical letters in a year, I will bet you. They don't even teach handwriting in school anymore. Try getting hold of a printing press and the ink and the paper. The infrastructure that would allow publishing written materials is going bye bye and what will be left will be very expensive.

Now lets talk about the internet. Do Muslims in Saudi Arabia have the right to use the internet to say they hate Jews on Arab websites? Do blacks in Africa have the right to discuss how the Europeans should all die for having stolen their people and their lands? Do American Indians have the right to use the internet to discuss how the white man came and took their lands and should all die? Do I have the right to say that a quarter of the English should starve to death as they starved my family, the Irish to death? Will I be free to read the New York Times editorial that said that the famine in Ireland might solve the "Irish Problem"? Should I be able to read Nazi propaganda from the 30s and 40s online so that I can understand how they did what they did?

If it is legal to have the Playboy channel on cable then should it be illegal to post the pictures online? I personally would not like it to be illegal for Penn Jillette of Penn and Teller to be prohibited from saying people that believe in God are idiots. FYI, he doesn't tend to do that, he is usually a respectful atheist as he is also a Libertarian and one of the best magician ever. Heck, I would be more than comfortable and happy to actually have an in depth religious discussion with him. As much as I know he believes in free speech who hid probably not agree with the next part of this post.

If the only way to communicate with the world is the internet than restrictions on what you can and cannot say are immoral if they prohibit the free exchange of ideas, even ones I find repulsive or threatening. You cannot legislate consent. It is wrong for Facebook, YouTube and Google to regulate belief when they are the center of social discussion.

If China regulates what you can say on the internet we call it repression and an immoral prohibition of free speech. If Facebook does it then people on the right will say it is capitalism and fine because Facebook is not the government. How does that work in a nation where all social media is controlled by corporations?

If you say that I can start my own Facebook you would be lying to yourself as the European Union now claims the right to fine you for what goes on the internet. What if we placed the exact same rules on the internet that we place on the U.S. mail? It is illegal to send child pornography using the mail system. It is however legal to send a letter to another saying that your brother in law is a no good nigger faggot xenophobe. Should your free speech end when you use a computer to speak it?

Just so you know, the current YouTube algorithm and Facebook rules could prohibit you from ever seeing this post because they would not judge the content properly. If blogger were to apply the same rules, this single blog could mark me as not being searchable.

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