Free speech or hate speech?

By niallon11 | Life @niallon11 | 11 Aug 2019



Where is the line?

I’m a huge advocate of free speech and have never been shy to say what I think about a matter. To me it doesn’t matter that I might offend people. For some strange reason people seem to think that only they have the right to think or feel a certain way. That their way is the only way and that nobody else is entitled to hold a different point of view or opinion.

I can never understand this myself. I might not like your opinion but you are fully entitled to have one. To be your own person and to feel free enough to express that. How else can people understand each other if they are afraid to speak.

At the moment most of the news that I can see is about a world divided. Most of it is focused on either England/Brexit or America/Trump. Two controversial issues and ones which are massively divisive. It seems to me that on both sides the opinion is,

“Our side is right and good. Your side is evil and wrong.”

Neither side is willing to listen to the other or even accept that they might have some valid life views. From where I’m sitting the media is firmly backing the politically correct version and castigating anybody who dares to rise their head above the parapet.

But there is a line.

When does expressing your opinion become hateful?

When does it cause harm to others?

What is the definition of hate speech?

Words are a dangerous commodity and can be used to cause untold damage if used in a certain way. We’ve seen countless examples throughout history of the devastation that can be caused by people in power using it to target other groups for their own gain.

It’s the oldest tactic in the book. Demonize the opposition. Make them the enemy, make them evil and turn people against them. It’s easier to perform terrible acts against them if they are considered less than human.

There is my line.

I will always say what I feel is relevant. I’m not a politician that worries about being called out on social media and targeted in the comment and by social media justice warriors. To be honest I couldn’t give a fuck about random internet people not liking my opinion. I don’t see the point. I have no problem with them not agreeing with me as that is part of life.

We all have different opinions and biases from how and where we grew up. As long as my words aren’t being used to demonize a person or group of people I will continue to say it as I mean it. I think it would be better if more people spoke freely and weren’t afraid of being true to their opinions.

We are all different.

People will never be all equal and live in a Utopian society and we never should be.

There is no point in having 8 billion clones on the planet only capable of acting or thinking in the one direction. What would even be the point.

As long as we can all remember that everybody is human at the end of the day and that we are all entitled to an opinion. We might have a lot of differences but we have a lot more that makes us the same. It’s important to embrace the difference rather than trying to turn us all into the same shade of grey.

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Life @niallon11
Life @niallon11

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