Hate Speech Is Not Free Speech

I came across this (the title of this entry) today in my facebook travels, reaction to a decision by the Harper Government to repeal some hate hate speech from the Canadian Human rights act (you can read more HERE). Normally in times past, I would nod my head in agreement (maybe share the meme or enter my agreement). But with the Paula Deen story still fairly fresh in our minds, I seen it from a bit of a different way.

Free speech

You may recognize the graph, as it was taken out of the article I linked to above. Although the results may look different as time goes on, as it stands above, is how it was when I cast my vote on the subject. Yes.

Like I said when it comes to the Paula Deen incident, whether or not a person SHOULD say something is one thing, and is frankly subjective. But one should be able to say it. Which is why I find the above little graph interesting. Seemingly, the majority of the voters do not understand the concept of free speech.

It is understandable that some things are best left unsaid. But the fact is, its subjective. And if you start picking and choosing what can and can’t be said based on what offends people, there will eventually be no words left.

Freedom of speech does not mean that ones words give them immunity to criticism. If you feel the person’s views are warped, biased and racist (or anything of the sort), you can call them out on there bullshit (freedom of speech!).

But you should be willing to defend this person’s right to say those things that offend you so. Because with freedom of speech, you either have it, or you don’t. There is no middle ground.