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gegarland
Posts: 191
Registered: ‎01-27-2008

Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today


TiggerBear wrote:

 

Can someone please explain to me how religion causes more murder than anything else in humanity? 

 

 


Tradition; absolutely no smileys intended or implied. Human beings are xenophobic. When they found something besides religion such as communism or nationalism to fanaticlly adhere to, they killed with as much zeal as would make Torquemada proud. We are not a naturally nice and benevolent species.

 

Alive, occupying space, and exerting gravitational force
Distinguished Correspondent
Adelle
Posts: 70
Registered: ‎11-09-2008

Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

I generally try to avoid abortion debates.  Maybe I’m like the people who don’t like to see the kind of photos that were on that website, who don’t like to look at disturbing facts.  

 

I didn’t say the group was a force for good or for bad.  I didn’t see that as the question.   Or maybe I just focused on what I wanted to focus on.   Probably.    You had referenced the photos.  I got the sense that your thinking was that these photos shouldn’t have been posted for people to see.  I wondered, Were upset about what you saw in the photos, or were upset that the photos were posted?  But perhaps you only mentioned the photos to warn people, so they wouldn’t be shocked without preparation.  If so, that was a kindness.   The photos WERE shocking.

  

I pointed out that the Army of God people were in no way RESPONSIBLE for the condition of the babies/fetuses in the photos.         An argument could be made that people should know the cost of their actions.   I’m trying to think of an example that might hold some similarities.   An argument could be made that pictures of the dead and wounded in war zones should be shown so that people will have some idea of the human cost of war…the hope being, I would think, that people would then make a greater effort to somehow diplomatically work thru problems so that war doesn’t come to seem to be the only option.  

 

So too an argument could be made that people should see the broken bodies of the babies/fetuses from abortions, the hope being, I would think, that people would then make a much greater effort to somehow avoid becoming pregnant if they did not want to have a child.   

 

Also, I pointed out that just because something is legal does not mean that it is right.   As with slavery.   Slavery was legal.    That didn’t make it the right thing for humans to engage in.   Pamphlets were written protesting.  Books were written (Uncle Tom’s Cabin pretty graphically portraying the horror and heartbreak of slavery.)   Eventually there was war…

 

Separate dinners, hotels, schools for blacks/whites were legal.    That didn’t make it the right thing for humans to impose.  Articles were written.   Protests were engaged in.  Finally laws were changed.

  

As the laws now stand, in most states marriage means one man and one woman.   Articles are being written.   Protests are being held. 

 

If you really believe in something---be it abolition of slavery, or for an expanded definition of marriage, or the right to life of the unborn---I think you should advocate for it.   Even if you’re protesting without a proper license from the city…of course, you have to be willing to pay the price of being arrested….because the city should be enforcing its laws, and should arrest those engaging in unlawful protest.

 

On the one hand, website you referenced went too far for me because a man HAS been murdered…and there’s no sense in the website that this is a terrible thing.

 

Living in a country of laws, I take no pleasure in anyone being murdered, as the doctor was.  He was very obviously a human being.

 

 

On the other hand, they have every right to declaim strongly against abortion since they believe that abortion laws should be changed.  It seems to fall within the right to free speech.   Free speech, I suppose, wouldn’t need a constitutional guarantee if it only covered stuff we agreed with.    Except for the photos though, they don’t have a very effective argument, in that the verbal presentation is not going to change anyone’s opinion…which, I would think, is ultimately what they want to do.  I guess, Ryan, I would say they would be more on the side of good if they had presented a better reasoned argument and if they hadn’t seemed to have no reservations about a man having been murdered.

 

People, I think, SHOULD advocate for laws they do believe in and against laws they do not believe in.  Advocate.  Protest.  Publish.  Opinionate.  I guess the word would be opine.   But violence, no. 

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L_Monty
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today


gegarland wrote:
Tradition; absolutely no smileys intended or implied. Human beings are xenophobic. When they found something besides religion such as communism or nationalism to fanaticlly adhere to, they killed with as much zeal as would make Torquemada proud. We are not a naturally nice and benevolent species.

 

 



I agree with your statement: nationalism and communism have been the impetus for genocides, less directed mass murders and inexcusable horrors. However, I want to add that those ISMs have existed really only for about two centuries (nationalism was essentially the creation of German students circa 1800 or perhaps the French circa 1789, while communism didn't come into existence really until the mid-nineteenth century), and the madness that can ensue from them has been repudiated for half that time, in the case of nationalism, and about a quarter of that time in the case of communism. But when you mention Torquemada, his Inquisition lasted for 356 years, into the nineteenth century, and finds adherents from different denominations applauding similar ruthlessness. The perversions of nationalism and communism that sought to excuse such mass murder are now pretty roundly repudiated in first-world societies, whereas the religious rhetoric that fueled Torquemada is seen as a fair statement of "belief," despite the fact that people in said societies continue to act on those beliefs. I'm not sure if I can make a compelling case for the adherents of the ISMs being different, but I feel that they are.



Adelle wrote:
Words

Great post. Thanks for this.
Inspired Contributor
Choisya
Posts: 10,782
Registered: ‎10-26-2006

Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

[ Edited ]

Re communism and nationalism:   There is also the point that those who opposed these political creeds did not oppose them by committing equal crimes, they opposed them by campaigning against them in a civilised manner and still so campaign, cf political opposition to communism in the US and the fascist parties in Europe. (NB: We did not go to war with Hitler over his nationalism, nor over his treatment of the Jews, we went to war because he broke treaties and invaded other countries.) 

 

Anti-abortionists on this side of the Pond have not resorted to violence and murder, they conduct their campaigns in the normal political manner.  The issue of late abortions is currently a topic of debate here and as a result of the rational arguments made, the law is likely to be altered in the near future.  There has been no hysterical or violent propaganda used although some photographs have been circulated to Members of Parliament.  It could be argued that law breaking, violence and murder turns many people away from a cause, certainly it should, in a democracy. 

 

(Two American anti-abortionists who campaigned violently here in 1993 were deported. The Press have since compared such groups to the Taliban.)

 

 

 


L_Monty wrote:

I agree with your statement: nationalism and communism have been the impetus for genocides, less directed mass murders and inexcusable horrors. However, I want to add that those ISMs have existed really only for about two centuries (nationalism was essentially the creation of German students circa 1800 or perhaps the French circa 1789, while communism didn't come into existence really until the mid-nineteenth century), and the madness that can ensue from them has been repudiated for half that time, in the case of nationalism, and about a quarter of that time in the case of communism. But when you mention Torquemada, his Inquisition lasted for 356 years, into the nineteenth century, and finds adherents from different denominations applauding similar ruthlessness. The perversions of nationalism and communism that sought to excuse such mass murder are now pretty roundly repudiated in first-world societies, whereas the religious rhetoric that fueled Torquemada is seen as a fair statement of "belief," despite the fact that people in said societies continue to act on those beliefs. I'm not sure if I can make a compelling case for the adherents of the ISMs being different, but I feel that they are.


 


gegarland wrote:
Tradition; absolutely no smileys intended or implied. Human beings are xenophobic. When they found something besides religion such as communism or nationalism to fanaticlly adhere to, they killed with as much zeal as would make Torquemada proud. We are not a naturally nice and benevolent species.

 

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Adelle wrote:
Words

Great post. Thanks for this.

 

Message Edited by Choisya on 06-02-2009 03:21 AM
Message Edited by Choisya on 06-02-2009 03:22 AM
Inspired Scribe
IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

Adelle, you have a marvelous way with words. Excellent post.

 


Adelle wrote:

I generally try to avoid abortion debates.  Maybe I’m like the people who don’t like to see the kind of photos that were on that website, who don’t like to look at disturbing facts.  

 

I didn’t say the group was a force for good or for bad.  I didn’t see that as the question.   Or maybe I just focused on what I wanted to focus on.   Probably.    You had referenced the photos.  I got the sense that your thinking was that these photos shouldn’t have been posted for people to see.  I wondered, Were upset about what you saw in the photos, or were upset that the photos were posted?  But perhaps you only mentioned the photos to warn people, so they wouldn’t be shocked without preparation.  If so, that was a kindness.   The photos WERE shocking.

  

I pointed out that the Army of God people were in no way RESPONSIBLE for the condition of the babies/fetuses in the photos.         An argument could be made that people should know the cost of their actions.   I’m trying to think of an example that might hold some similarities.   An argument could be made that pictures of the dead and wounded in war zones should be shown so that people will have some idea of the human cost of war…the hope being, I would think, that people would then make a greater effort to somehow diplomatically work thru problems so that war doesn’t come to seem to be the only option.  

 

So too an argument could be made that people should see the broken bodies of the babies/fetuses from abortions, the hope being, I would think, that people would then make a much greater effort to somehow avoid becoming pregnant if they did not want to have a child.   

 

Also, I pointed out that just because something is legal does not mean that it is right.   As with slavery.   Slavery was legal.    That didn’t make it the right thing for humans to engage in.   Pamphlets were written protesting.  Books were written (Uncle Tom’s Cabin pretty graphically portraying the horror and heartbreak of slavery.)   Eventually there was war…

 

Separate dinners, hotels, schools for blacks/whites were legal.    That didn’t make it the right thing for humans to impose.  Articles were written.   Protests were engaged in.  Finally laws were changed.

  

As the laws now stand, in most states marriage means one man and one woman.   Articles are being written.   Protests are being held. 

 

If you really believe in something---be it abolition of slavery, or for an expanded definition of marriage, or the right to life of the unborn---I think you should advocate for it.   Even if you’re protesting without a proper license from the city…of course, you have to be willing to pay the price of being arrested….because the city should be enforcing its laws, and should arrest those engaging in unlawful protest.

 

On the one hand, website you referenced went too far for me because a man HAS been murdered…and there’s no sense in the website that this is a terrible thing.

 

Living in a country of laws, I take no pleasure in anyone being murdered, as the doctor was.  He was very obviously a human being.

 

 

On the other hand, they have every right to declaim strongly against abortion since they believe that abortion laws should be changed.  It seems to fall within the right to free speech.   Free speech, I suppose, wouldn’t need a constitutional guarantee if it only covered stuff we agreed with.    Except for the photos though, they don’t have a very effective argument, in that the verbal presentation is not going to change anyone’s opinion…which, I would think, is ultimately what they want to do.  I guess, Ryan, I would say they would be more on the side of good if they had presented a better reasoned argument and if they hadn’t seemed to have no reservations about a man having been murdered.

 

People, I think, SHOULD advocate for laws they do believe in and against laws they do not believe in.  Advocate.  Protest.  Publish.  Opinionate.  I guess the word would be opine.   But violence, no. 


 

 

IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
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IBIS
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎11-22-2006

Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

We obviously have different definitons for the words "bravery" and "logic".

 

To me, someone whose profession involves the dismemberment of soon-to-be-born children is not engaging in an act of bravery.

 

Similarly, someone who thinks legitimate criticism of President Obama necessarily leads to violence is not thinking logically.

 

Leave it at that.

 

 

IBIS

"I am a part of everything that I have read."
RTA
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RTA
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today


Choisya wrote:

This well illustrates the reason why we in the UK prefer to have laws against hate speech Ryan - to protect the majority of our citizens against the minority of such dangerous loonies.

 


 

Oh rilly!  The UK restricts hate speech that targets abortion doctors?  I was under the impression that the Public Order Act of 1986 restricts speech demonstrating "racial hatred," and was later amended to restrict "hatred against persons on religious grounds," and most recently to restrict "hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation."  (Though I'm not sure the last one has yet been enacted.)  So, did I miss an amendment restricting hate speech targeting doctors, generally, or abortion doctors, specifically?  Because, otherwise, I don't see how a thread about a murdered doctor has anything to do with the U.K.'s decision to limit specific types of speech, for arbitrarily protected groups, which the state happens to find distasteful.

 

Choisya, I know you had previously indicated that you are not interested in discussing state restrictions on free speech; however, since you continue to mention the topic in threads that have very little, if anything, to do with hate speech and/or free speech, I thought you might, in fact, be interested in discussing the topic more directly.  If you are so interested, I'll be happy to summarize my position again on an appropriately relevant thread, just let me know.

RTA
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RTA
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today


Ryan_G wrote:
In my weaker moments I wish we had such laws.  I read some of the crap they post on their website and quite honestly I found most of what I read scary.  The fact that they idolize murderers and hold them up as heroes of God is just frightening to me.

 


 

Hang tough, Ryan.  Don't fall for the ploy.  Further response found here.

RTA
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RTA
Posts: 920
Registered: ‎08-19-2008

Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today


IBIS wrote:

 

To me, someone whose profession involves the dismemberment of soon-to-be-born children is not engaging in an act of bravery.

 


Until I see the vanguard of the "prolife"/anti-abortion movement actually working towards trying to limit abortions in the U.S., rather than focusing almost solely on legislatively restricting women's medical choices, I will continue to find the moral high ground they attempt to assume (e.g. it's all about protecting the "soon-to-be-born children" ) nothing more than laughable.

 

As it is, I see very little evidence that the "prolife" movement in the U.S. actually cares about trying to reduce the amount of abortions in this country.

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debbook
Posts: 1,823
Registered: ‎05-03-2008

Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today


RTA wrote:

IBIS wrote:

 

To me, someone whose profession involves the dismemberment of soon-to-be-born children is not engaging in an act of bravery.

 


Until I see the vanguard of the "prolife"/anti-abortion movement actually working towards trying to limit abortions in the U.S., rather than focusing almost solely on legislatively restricting women's medical choices, I will continue to find the moral high ground they attempt to assume (e.g. it's all about protecting the "soon-to-be-born children" ) nothing more than laughable.

 

As it is, I see very little evidence that the "prolife" movement in the U.S. actually cares about trying to reduce the amount of abortions in this country.


 

Not to mention that many of the people that are anti-abortion advocates don't seem interested in the quality of life that the child has after it's born and don't want their tax dollars used.

To reduce abortion- increase funding for sex education and education in general. Make birth control readily available and affordable. And more options and assistance for low income women/families that become pregnant.

Ultimately, education is key.

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gegarland
Posts: 191
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today


L_Monty wrote: 
The perversions of nationalism and communism that sought to excuse such mass murder are now pretty roundly repudiated in first-world societies, whereas the religious rhetoric that fueled Torquemada is seen as a fair statement of "belief," despite the fact that people in said societies continue to act on those beliefs.

 

Pretty darn sure that violent fanaticism in the name of religion is also pretty roundly repudiated in first-world societies, as well. 

 I'm not sure if I can make a compelling case for the adherents of the ISMs being different, but I feel that they are.
 

They were ready and willing to kill in order to remake society to the standards they believed in; looks the same to me. It is ultimately actions that matter, not neccessarily the beliefs that maybe by some strange twists and turns led to heinous actions.

 

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Ryan_G
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

I actually have no problem with the photos being posted on their website.  I put the warning simply to let people know that there were graphic picutres on the site.  That way they could make up their own minds wether or not to visit the site.

 

I also have no problem with them denoucing abortion and trying to get the laws overturned.  What I do have a problem with is the idea that words don't have consequences.  When you instigate hatred and preach for the death of those you disagree with.  You have to take repsonsibility when your words become reality.


Adelle wrote:

I generally try to avoid abortion debates.  Maybe I’m like the people who don’t like to see the kind of photos that were on that website, who don’t like to look at disturbing facts.  

 

I didn’t say the group was a force for good or for bad.  I didn’t see that as the question.   Or maybe I just focused on what I wanted to focus on.   Probably.    You had referenced the photos.  I got the sense that your thinking was that these photos shouldn’t have been posted for people to see.  I wondered, Were upset about what you saw in the photos, or were upset that the photos were posted?  But perhaps you only mentioned the photos to warn people, so they wouldn’t be shocked without preparation.  If so, that was a kindness.   The photos WERE shocking.

  

I pointed out that the Army of God people were in no way RESPONSIBLE for the condition of the babies/fetuses in the photos.         An argument could be made that people should know the cost of their actions.   I’m trying to think of an example that might hold some similarities.   An argument could be made that pictures of the dead and wounded in war zones should be shown so that people will have some idea of the human cost of war…the hope being, I would think, that people would then make a greater effort to somehow diplomatically work thru problems so that war doesn’t come to seem to be the only option.  

 

So too an argument could be made that people should see the broken bodies of the babies/fetuses from abortions, the hope being, I would think, that people would then make a much greater effort to somehow avoid becoming pregnant if they did not want to have a child.   

 

Also, I pointed out that just because something is legal does not mean that it is right.   As with slavery.   Slavery was legal.    That didn’t make it the right thing for humans to engage in.   Pamphlets were written protesting.  Books were written (Uncle Tom’s Cabin pretty graphically portraying the horror and heartbreak of slavery.)   Eventually there was war…

 

Separate dinners, hotels, schools for blacks/whites were legal.    That didn’t make it the right thing for humans to impose.  Articles were written.   Protests were engaged in.  Finally laws were changed.

  

As the laws now stand, in most states marriage means one man and one woman.   Articles are being written.   Protests are being held. 

 

If you really believe in something---be it abolition of slavery, or for an expanded definition of marriage, or the right to life of the unborn---I think you should advocate for it.   Even if you’re protesting without a proper license from the city…of course, you have to be willing to pay the price of being arrested….because the city should be enforcing its laws, and should arrest those engaging in unlawful protest.

 

On the one hand, website you referenced went too far for me because a man HAS been murdered…and there’s no sense in the website that this is a terrible thing.

 

Living in a country of laws, I take no pleasure in anyone being murdered, as the doctor was.  He was very obviously a human being.

 

 

On the other hand, they have every right to declaim strongly against abortion since they believe that abortion laws should be changed.  It seems to fall within the right to free speech.   Free speech, I suppose, wouldn’t need a constitutional guarantee if it only covered stuff we agreed with.    Except for the photos though, they don’t have a very effective argument, in that the verbal presentation is not going to change anyone’s opinion…which, I would think, is ultimately what they want to do.  I guess, Ryan, I would say they would be more on the side of good if they had presented a better reasoned argument and if they hadn’t seemed to have no reservations about a man having been murdered.

 

People, I think, SHOULD advocate for laws they do believe in and against laws they do not believe in.  Advocate.  Protest.  Publish.  Opinionate.  I guess the word would be opine.   But violence, no. 


 

"I am half sick of shadows" The Lady of Shalott

http://wordsmithonia.blogspot.com
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Ryan_G
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

IBIS,

 

I'm not sure how clearly you read what I posted.  The argument was not that resonable, intelligent analysis of a President will lead to violence.  The argument was that using hate filled speech.  Calling those you don't like UnAmerican, demonic, murderers, killers and such will lead to violence.  Words have consequences and thos who use those words must take responsibility for what those words lead to.  If you didn't think words have power you wouldn't read nor would you be posting on here.


IBIS wrote:

We obviously have different definitons for the words "bravery" and "logic".

 

To me, someone whose profession involves the dismemberment of soon-to-be-born children is not engaging in an act of bravery.

 

Similarly, someone who thinks legitimate criticism of President Obama necessarily leads to violence is not thinking logically.

 

Leave it at that.

 

 


 

"I am half sick of shadows" The Lady of Shalott

http://wordsmithonia.blogspot.com
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Ryan_G
Posts: 3,295
Registered: ‎10-24-2008
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

Don't worry.  While there are moments (like reading Army Of God's Website) when I think such language should be illegal, it only lasts a few seconds and then I'm back to normal.  Though wouldn't life be a lot nicer without having to listen to such virtriol. 

 

Imagine a world without Bill O'Rielly, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, Laura Ingram and the rest of their ilk spewing all that hatred out of their mouths.  Wouldn't it be nice? :smileywink:  Though I would be at the head of the line defending their right to be as stupid as they want to be.


RTA wrote:

Ryan_G wrote:
In my weaker moments I wish we had such laws.  I read some of the crap they post on their website and quite honestly I found most of what I read scary.  The fact that they idolize murderers and hold them up as heroes of God is just frightening to me.

 


 

Hang tough, Ryan.  Don't fall for the ploy.  Further response found here.


 

"I am half sick of shadows" The Lady of Shalott

http://wordsmithonia.blogspot.com
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Choisya
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

I think that all that can civilly be said between us on this subject has been said elsewhere RTA.

 

 


RTA wrote:

Choisya wrote:

This well illustrates the reason why we in the UK prefer to have laws against hate speech Ryan - to protect the majority of our citizens against the minority of such dangerous loonies.

 


 

Oh rilly!  The UK restricts hate speech that targets abortion doctors?  I was under the impression that the Public Order Act of 1986 restricts speech demonstrating "racial hatred," and was later amended to restrict "hatred against persons on religious grounds," and most recently to restrict "hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation."  (Though I'm not sure the last one has yet been enacted.)  So, did I miss an amendment restricting hate speech targeting doctors, generally, or abortion doctors, specifically?  Because, otherwise, I don't see how a thread about a murdered doctor has anything to do with the U.K.'s decision to limit specific types of speech, for arbitrarily protected groups, which the state happens to find distasteful.

 

Choisya, I know you had previously indicated that you are not interested in discussing state restrictions on free speech; however, since you continue to mention the topic in threads that have very little, if anything, to do with hate speech and/or free speech, I thought you might, in fact, be interested in discussing the topic more directly.  If you are so interested, I'll be happy to summarize my position again on an appropriately relevant thread, just let me know.


 

RTA
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RTA
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Advocating for hate speech laws in unrelated threads…


Choisya wrote:

I think that all that can civilly be said between us on this subject has been said elsewhere RTA.

 


Response here.

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Choisya
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Re: Advocating for hate speech laws in unrelated threads…

[ Edited ]

Re your link:  I reserve my right on any of these threads to comment on free speech and/or hate speech or on any darn thing wherever I feel it is appropriate and providing I am within the Site Guidelines and/or the Moderator asks me not to do so.   I am not advocating anything, I am just stating my personal preference for certain UK laws. You are entitled to your opinion, I am entitled to mine, that is all.   

 

And yes, any opposition to this murdered doctor which included hateful religious rhetoric (as has been used by American Pro-Life campaigners in the UK) would be covered by our discrimination laws, other statements might be covered by our defamation laws, which I believe are stronger than in many other countries.   (As I am not a lawyer, I do not want to argue about this either, I am merely stating an opinion on our law as I see it.)     

 

 

 

 


RTA wrote:

Choisya wrote:

I think that all that can civilly be said between us on this subject has been said elsewhere RTA.

 


Response here.


 

Message Edited by Choisya on 06-03-2009 12:31 PM
RTA
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RTA
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

As reported in Salon, Dr. Tiller is featured in a documentary based on Thomas Frank's book, What's the Matter with Kansas?
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Jon_B
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Re: Dr. George Tiller Shot and Killed in Church Today

Thanks RTA, looks interesting.
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Re: Advocating for hate speech laws in unrelated threads…


Choisya wrote:

And yes, any opposition to this murdered doctor which included hateful religious rhetoric (as has been used by American Pro-Life campaigners in the UK) would be covered by our discrimination laws...


Choisya, I'm not trying to hound you, but because you so often raise the topic of hate crime legislation, and I find the topic so interesting; and because I (being a U.S. citizen) rarely encounter informed people who advocate for hate speech legislation, it's hard for me to ignore the opportunity to engage the discussion. 

 

Assuming by "discrimination laws" you mean U.K. hate speech laws, which is what this discussion has been about--As far as I understand it (and of course I could be wrong because I'm not a British citizen and therefore not fully knowledgeable about U.K. legislation) that's not entirely accurate.  The Racial and Religious Hatred Act defines "religious hatred" as "hatred against a group of persons defined by reference to religious belief or lack of religious belief."  Dr. Tiller, in his role as an abortion doctor, is not part of "a group of persons defined by reference to religious belief or lack of religious belief."  Likewise, much of the rhetoric targeted at abortion doctors is not motivated by reference to those abortion doctors' religious belief or lack thereof.  So I don't see how the Racial and Religious Hatred Act would apply to abortion doctors. 

 

However, because many of the most vociferous anti-abortion advocates are religious, and because they invoke religious rhetoric in their advocacy, I wonder if language targeting those religious groups and that religious speech, if it is construed as hate language, could be restricted.  For instance, could Ryan's statement that the people on the "prolife" side are "crazy" be restricted?  His speech targets a group that could arguably be "defined by reference to religious belief."  Is calling someone crazy hateful?

 

In fact, these questions touch on some of the very reservations I have with regard to hate speech legislation, which is why I can't help but attempt to take this opportunity to hopefully encourage you to engage the topic.  If you are interested in such a discussion, I invite you to respond--in a different thread, of course.