Hate Speech and the Second Amendment

Let's get the preliminaries out of the way, shall we?

1. The definition of Hate Speech according to Wikipedia is: any communication which disparages a person or a group on the basis of some characteristic such as race or sexual orientation.

2. The definition of Censor according to dictionary.com is: any person who supervises the manners or morality of other.

3. The definition of Freedom of Speech is as follows: freedom to speak without censorship or limitation, or both. The synonymous term freedom of expression is sometimes used to indicate not only freedom of verbal speech but any act of seeking, receiving and imparting information or ideas, regardless of the medium used.

Now, having read the previous definitions does something appear amiss to you? Freedom of Speech is NOT freedom of speech that “we like” or that agrees with us, freedom of speech means that people who don't agree with us have the right to voice their disagreement even if that includes hateful, awful terrible speech. If we only have freedom of speech for the people we like or who agree with us then we have no freedom of speech at all. It is my opinion that freedom of speech should be an absolute right or even (dare I say) an inalienable right because to single out hate speech is to impose someone's subjective views on what is offensive. The legislation against hate speech is nothing less than someone's subjective views being imposed on someone else. It's a form of censorship and control, nothing less. A person should be able to say, voice or believe anything they want even if what they say, voice or believe is abhorrent to me. That is what this country was founded on and to legislate hate speech is to deny the citizens of this country their freedom.

The line that should be drawn is with actions, actions are not speech, for to say “I want to kill you” does not affect your death!

For some reason the founding fathers understood what appears to be a difficult concept for current justices of the Supreme Court as one cannot have any freedom of speech if certain kinds of speech are denied or made illegal, it nullifies the entire right when certain speech, however, repugnant are censored. The legislation against hate speech is unconstitutional and needs to be repealed or it will serve as just another nail in the coffin wherein lies what used to be the United States.

Do you think that hate speech legislation is unconstitutional?

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Comments 28 comments

tonymac04 profile image

tonymac04 6 years ago from South Africa

Totally agre with you on this. Freedom of speech is not relative. I know it is difficult sometimes to hear people inciting others or making hideous statements about others on the basis of religion, race, or culture. However, as you point out, the actual speech does not do the killing.

It is a difficult line to hold though. Because what do we say about those who make anti-Jewish or anti-Black statements which do indeed incite others to act, to murder, to lynch, even to the gas chambers.

Is there not a case to be made that vulnerable people should have some protection? It's a bit late to arrest the perpetrators after the fact. So it is a difficult question which is not totally cut and dried, as it were.

I'm not sure what the law in the US states about this. Our constitution specifically outlaws "hate speech" and now we have the difficulty of defining exactly what hate speech is in each case. It has led to some interesting court battles already in our young democracy.

Love and peace


Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, that's the problem, the definition is subjective. You can say that what I am saying is hate speech or I can say what you are saying is hate speech and who can argue against another person feeling "hated". And then what...is the state going to throw someone in jail because of that? Do you think that stopping someone from saying something will stop them from "doing" something? It is the action not the thought or the word that should be illegal.

the pink umbrella profile image

the pink umbrella 6 years ago from the darkened forest deep within me.

Brie- i think that what you are saying has an element of truth to it. However, there was a man who started out by only using is words to point out that the dfferences in others made them less, and those words got stronger and stronger until they LEAD to actions, and that man was hitler. Maybe if someone would have stopped him when he started his hateful words, he wouldn't have been able to progress in his actions. Im just saying, being allowed to speak so hatefully, and negatively towards people, kind of makes the next step not that far of a leap, you know? And what about peoples feelings? Just because you arent physically harming someone, does not mean that your words cant hurt them. I dont know, I agree with you on certain points, and that we should be able to have the freedom of speech for certain situations, i think when you are dealing with people, you should apply the golden rule.

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Personally I try and apply the golden rule. But,when it comes to freedom of speech if you disallow one you disallow all.

SaMcNutt profile image

SaMcNutt 6 years ago from Englewood, CO

Rand Paul got in trouble for saying that shop owners had the right to refuse service if they choose, even though he wouldn't agree with their reasons for doing so. He was slandered and basically ridiculed for saying people have the right to choose to be idiots if they like. The freedom of speech is one worth dying for (wait some already have).

Great points.

Michael Adams1959 profile image

Michael Adams1959 6 years ago from Wherever God leads us.

And that is where this tolerance crap comes in! The gross neglectful, immoral, disgusting, reprobate, slanderer, wicked, unjust, filthy, depraved mind nowadays can say or do anything they please but those that are just, moral, true, loving, saved by grace, believers in God Almighty and His Son Jesus Christ may not say anything back and must "tolerate" the aforementioned.

A M Werner profile image

A M Werner 6 years ago from West Allis

Yahshua warned us of this all along. In Matthew 10:16-22 He warned that His followers would be led up before their councils to testify of the truth. Sadly, it is not something that should surprise us, nor is it something we should be fearful to do. Peace.

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Thanks for commenting SaMcNutt, Michael and A M; it's a sad state of affairs for sure.

Judah's Daughter profile image

Judah's Daughter 6 years ago from Roseville, CA

Yep, and what will they do with us, if we're found guilty of 'hate speech' (by their subjective standards)? Oh! Hate us, put us in prison, kill us ~ sounds rationally hateless to me...

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Ironic huh!

American Romance profile image

American Romance 6 years ago from America

So when the panthers openly say they hate whites and want me and my children dead, I am supposed to sit by and know this hate speech hasn't killed me? Maybe if the Jews had acted instead of sitting around listening to Hitler on the radio speaking hate speech toward them, they might have saved millions! Brie made a great point that sometimes it is as percieved! Coulter called Edwards a faggot! Dems percieved it as hate, Coulter percieved it as his pretty boy image! Rush calls him the Bret Girl all this time, Same thing, different word. OK im done!

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

No, what the Jews should have done is armed themselves to the teeth and when the Nazi came to take them away they should have opened fire. Do you think for one moment that taking away there freedom of speech is going to make the hatred go away? If anything having freedom of speech warns people to protect themselves.

fred allen profile image

fred allen 6 years ago from Myrtle Beach SC

I like you! You are always bringing things politically correct people are afraid to bring up into public view for open discussion. I'm with you on this. Even though I was appalled at the statements made by that member of the new black panther party, I support his right to say it. THere are however, instances where censorship is appropriate like yelling fire in a crowded theater or BOMB on a subway or plane.

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I think you might be able to draw the line here: If your speech is proven to be objectively untrue (as in the case of a bomb or fire as you mentioned)and has the potential to cause immediate harm (as in a stampede) that should be prosecutable but other than that...all bets are off.

garynew profile image

garynew 6 years ago from Dallas, TX and Sampran, Thailand

You can delete this for shameless self-promotion, but have you read my Hate Speech Commission hubs in which I constantly demonstrate that attempting to regulate emotion results in a thought-police state?

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I haven't but I will.

the pink umbrella profile image

the pink umbrella 6 years ago from the darkened forest deep within me.

im getting this better than i did a few days ago. Im thinking freedom of speech should be freedom of all speech. But how do you draw the line? If you say, "im going to kill you" (and not in a joking manner) Is that freedom of speech just because the action wasn't commited yet? So hard when its shades of grey. This hub is very though provoking. It started a 2 hour discusion between my brother and I.

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Yes, it's not an easy answer any way you look at it but I stand by my hub. BTW, saying your going to kill someone and actually doing provide for 2 very different results. Thanks for provided a well thought out comment!

nightwork4 profile image

nightwork4 6 years ago from ontario. canada

the problem with freedom of speech is where do we draw the line. that's the biggest problem. if you feel a certain way about something then you should be able to state it but if you use this freedom with the intent to cause harm then, well that's where the problems start.

the pink umbrella profile image

the pink umbrella 6 years ago from the darkened forest deep within me.

Yes, i agree. I mean, can you really hang a sign on your lawn that says..."Jews are going to burn in hell?" Is that freedom of speech or a hate crime? Very confusing, this toppic!

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

I think that should be under freedom of speech, I don't think that should be a hate crime.

Joni Douglas profile image

Joni Douglas 6 years ago

Just like the Westboro minister, he has the freedom to say those hateful things about out fallen soldiers. We may not like it but he has the right. We do, however, have the right to a funeral without the circus, so we can regulate where the speech is given.

So, the pink umbrella is right when she says this is a confusing subject.

But our rights are rightly given and perhaps we need them protected from the PC police. Excellent job Brie.

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 6 years ago from Manhattan Author

Well, I think a funeral is private, so I am not sure how that guy gets in there. What a shameful man he is and so unlike Jesus.

Uncle Samurai 6 years ago

To hate speech I say...Think about the consequences and good luck

Mimi721wis profile image

Mimi721wis 6 years ago

I believe in freedom of speech. If society doesn't care for my skin color or beliefs I have no problem with. It's better to know how those around you feel. No one has the right to harm, discriminate or threaten others.

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 5 years ago from Manhattan Author

Please don't put outside urls in comments.

Larry Fields profile image

Larry Fields 4 years ago from Northern California

The older I get, the more I'm turned off by Political Correctness. And Hate Speech legislation is one aspect of PC.

Here's an example to put the Hate Speech issue into perspective. An Environmentalist group called 10:10 put out a sick little video, called "No Pressure." The message: It'd be fun to blow up children who are indifferent to the putative threat of Global Warming.

Yes, there was a backlash, and the video was quickly pulled. However you can still find copies of it floating around in cyberspace.

Now suppose that the video had featured Jewish kids being blown up, instead of non-Environmentalist kids. It would have been all over the evening news. The 10:10 folks would have been exposed as the creeps they truly are. And who knows? They may have been prosecuted under Hate Speech laws.

Here's my point: Whenever Congress or state legislators designate one particular group as a Protected Class, that's unfair to equally vulnerable people who have less political clout. Fourteenth Amendment, anyone?

Voted up.

Brie Hoffman profile image

Brie Hoffman 4 years ago from Manhattan Author

I couldn't agree more! I'm sincerely flattered that you became a fan. Thanks for commenting.

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