Friday, January 18, 2008

Great Minds Think Alike

I have been reflecting on the radical right nut jobs and Kohlberg's stages of moral development recently and censorship. So has natasha, smintheus and Sara. As natasha writes: "everybody's local flavor of fundamentalist sounds the same as all the rest of them. Mass arrested development."

Some recent bad examples - Mike Savage. Wow.

The other - the author of a recently banned comment here. "This blog is the biggest pile of b.s. I have ever read. I sure hope you don't reproduce!" I am reproducing the comment in full. That type of comment is not unusual. What was unusual was that my concern for what politicians were supporting the Middle Class brought on that comment.

OK, it is a given they are wacky nut jobs. But I have difficulty in determining at what point should we consider censorship for hate speech. At this blog I have made it a policy to reserve the right to ban anonymous comments I don't like. How much should the government regulate our public airwaves which have been given to private enterprise to profit from as long as they serve the public interest? Is hate speech no longer serving the public interest?

A question I don't have an easy answer to.

Tick off a conservative today. Read for pleasure.


Anonymous said...

Obviously you do not understand the phrase “what goes around come around” Your statement “Tick off a conservative today. Read for pleasure” is exactly what Savage and the others what you call “wacky nut jobs” has done to you, “Tick off a liberal today, for your listening pleasure”. Both conservatives and liberals spew out what the other side considers hate speech. Your take on it would be if you disagree with what was being said, then the hell with free speech, label it as hate and have it censored. That way only your ideology will or can be promoted. After all, in your mind you absolutely know what is right for our society and how dare anyone disagree. Funny, seems from reading history, Hitler thought the same thing.

Gary said...

Welcome Houston Chronicle readers. I can never predict what the opinion page will link to. Items that people in the news business find interesting, I guess.

I let this Anony comment above be posted. I regret he is not willing to stand behind his or her views.

After reading, and rereading, Anony I would suggest he click the links and read and listen. My post is about how extremists all start to sound alike and the trouble in determining when hate speech crosses boundaries that we as Americans may not want to permit as really and truly "hate" speech on the airwaves.

My post closes with questions and does not actively advocate banning speech I disagree with, except the anonymous comments on my own space. It also opens with something I should have developed more and tied more closely to "hate" speech - the Kohlberg stages of moral development.

Anony seems to think "Tick off a conservative today. Read for pleasure." is equally as offensive as yelling loudly into a microphone "Take your religion and shove it up your behind! I'm sick of you!"

Is one as offensive or hateful as the other? I don't think so but others like Anony seem to disagree.