The Instigator
TekNiix
Pro (for)
Losing
3 Points
The Contender
QueenDaisy
Con (against)
Winning
6 Points

Hate speech ought to always be legal

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
QueenDaisy
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/15/2017 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 688 times Debate No: 100987
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (15)
Votes (3)

 

TekNiix

Pro

Everyone has a right to freedom of speech. No matter what a person says, no matter how monstrous, it should be ok for them to do so. That is the fundamental pillar of freedom of speech.

People should have the right to openly criticize a religion or anything they want as a matter of fact. As long as there is no aggressive pursuit of an individual or any forms of harassment, then it should be legal.

Freedom of speech is freedom of speech. Literally meaning you can say whatever you want without the fear of prosecution. Everyone has opinions, and whether or not they want to project it publicly is their own doing. The principles of democracy lie upon open discourse and political debates.

I believe one thing, you believe the other. I am sure if someone was blatantly prejudice on the street, it would not make some other person anymore prejudice.

Although I hate people who spread hate speech, I do not believe that we should suppress their right to freedom of speech just because I don't like what I hear. Instead, I would go up to them and have an open discussion on their point of view and deduce whether or not they have a rational premise(s) behind their mindset
QueenDaisy

Con

Though we'd agree that freedom of speech is a vital pillar to western society, we seem to disagree about the nature of what "freedom of speech" means. Pro seems to suggest that "freedom of speech" means that there is absolutely nothing you shouldn't be allowed to say, and their argument rests upon this premise. However, clearly, this is not the case. We would all agree that the following are (and should be) illegal:

1) Publishing proxies of websites in which one can access child pornography, rape porn, or other content which is very much illegal.
2) Publishing the identity and aliases of undercover members of the CIA.
3) Bursting into a bank and yelling "Give me all the money in the register or I'll blow everyone's brains out!"

It is not true to say, therefore, that:

"Freedom of speech is freedom of speech. Literally meaning you can say whatever you want without the fear of prosecution."

As, as in the above cases, you cannot transmit illegal information, or make threats, as two examples of speech which is not (and should not) be protected. Hate speech also necessarily involves making threats or encouraging threatening behaviour, as defined below:

"In the law of some countries, hate speech is described as speech, gesture or conduct, writing, or display which is forbidden because it incites violence or prejudicial action against or by a protected group"

(https://en.wikipedia.org...)

Hence, in the same way it is illegal to threaten to kill everyone in a bank, it should be just as illegal to threaten to kill, for example, homosexuals, or to encourage others to do the same.

Relevant information regarding the Universal Declaration of Human Rights' definition of "Freedom of speech":

"Article 19 of the UDHR states that "everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference" and "everyone shall have the right to freedom of expression; this right shall include freedom to seek, receive and impart information and ideas of all kinds, regardless of frontiers, either orally, in writing or in print, in the form of art, or through any other media of his choice". The version of Article 19 in the ICCPR later amends this by stating that the exercise of these rights carries "special duties and responsibilities" and may "therefore be subject to certain restrictions""

(Source: https://en.wikipedia.org...)

The right to free speech does not, therefore, include the unrestricted right to say absolutely anything regardless of the consequences such speech has. Rather, it is the right to hold any opinion regardless of its consequences, and to express such opinions provided they do not have severely harmful consequences, such as making threats, committing fraud, or lying in court.

Hate speech, therefore, is not protected by freedom of speech, and should not be legal.

I would also like to emphasise the wording of the motion: "Hate speech ought to *ALWAYS* be legal"- hence, if you can think of a single instance of hate speech which should not be legal, you necessarily side with myself, and not my opponent.
Debate Round No. 1
TekNiix

Pro

The examples you list, although it is true, all have one similarity. That is, those actions have their own set of laws that prevent them from happening. You took my argument way to literally. Freedom of speech does not give you the right to override other laws that have been placed for the safety of society. Yelling something like "Shoot" in a theater, is announcing an action, which is an example of a threat, which is why it is illegal.

I explained that freedom of speech does not give you the right to threaten others. It gives you the right to express your ideas. Whatever those ideas may be. As long as the speech coincides with existing laws that are built to protect society from harm, then it should be allowed.

I should have added, freedom of speech should only be limited to the point that it can coexist with other applicable laws placed by the state.

Not all hate speech is a threat. Hate speech most of the time is a critique. As I said before, if someone uses hate speech as a way to threaten another person, then they should be prosecuted. But if they are openly criticizing a religion, gender, etc., then freedom of speech should be extended to that point
QueenDaisy

Con

The motion is:

"Hate speech ought to *ALWAYS* be legal".

My opponent said:

"if someone uses hate speech as a way to threaten another person, then they should be prosecuted".

As such, they have admitted hate speech shouldn't always be legal, and thus that the motion ought to be failed. I needn't comment further. Con's case rests.
Debate Round No. 2
TekNiix

Pro

I do not believe the argument is done. This is an issue with you not applying the context of what I said to the title. If you rest, I will take that as a forfeit.

I understand there may have been some confusion over the title, but nonetheless, you know the points I am trying to make. If you wish to forfeit, by all means do so.
QueenDaisy

Con

You set out to argue that "Hate speech ought to *ALWAYS* be legal", but you later conceded when you said: "if someone uses hate speech as a way to threaten another person, then they should be prosecuted". It is not a forfeit to acknowledge that no more needs to be said as the argument has already been won.

Statements such as "if they are openly criticizing a religion, gender, etc., then freedom of speech should be extended to that point" are precisely irrelevant to the motion, as that is a single case when hate speech may be deemed acceptable- it is not an argument that it is always acceptable.

Voters, please consider: from what has been said, has the case been sufficiently made that hate speech ought to *ALWAYS* be legal? If not, side with me. Con's case rests.
Debate Round No. 3
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by whiteflame 1 year ago
whiteflame
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>Reported vote: Thescarecrow066// Mod action: Removed<

7 points to Con. Reasons for voting decision: I believe the contender displayed better reasoning and sources. Also convinced me

[*Reason for removal*] (1) The voter doesn"t explain conduct or S&G. (2) Arguments and sources are insufficiently explained. Merely restating those point allocations and mentioning that the voter himself was convinced is not sufficient " the voter must explain these point allocations.
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Posted by whiteflame 1 year ago
whiteflame
*******************************************************************
>Reported vote: dsjpk5// Mod action: NOT Removed<

3 points to Con (Arguments). Reasons for voting decision: As Con pointed out, Pro agreed there are times hate speech should be illegal. This is tantamount to a concession since the contention says it should always be legal.

[*Reason for non-removal*] As long as the voter is clear about where the debate was effectively conceded, it is sufficient despite a lack of analysis of the other side"s argument.
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Posted by paintballvet18 1 year ago
paintballvet18
So, RFD time:

The Con says to summarize Round 1, "Hate speech, therefore, is not protected by freedom of speech, and should not be legal."

I as a judge cannot accept this for two reasons. First, if we take the first part of the sentence to be true, then the second part is false. Because if hate speech is not protected, then it IS not legal, not SHOULD not be legal.

Regardless, as many debaters across the nation learned in January and February in the NSDA Lincoln-Douglas resolution, hate speech IS protected by the Constitution and IS a legal form of speech in America. Fighting words, as descrbied by the Con in the majority of Round 1, are NOT protected (since Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire 1942). So which is it Con? Because it's hard for me as a judge to tell.

The Pro very accurately points this out in Round 2 and calls the Con out on it. However, I don't buy the fact that the Pro can get away with calling hate speech a "critique" because it does, even indirectly, usually result in violence (see Civil War and post-Civil War reconstruction).

Regardless, Con's Round 2 is solely based on flawed logic. Because as I've just explained above, hate speech, when used to threaten, therefore becomes fighting words, something quite different, and therefore has nothing to do with the resolution. Pro still leads in offense at this point in the debate.

Pro wastes Round 3 in my opinion, but at this point Con's Round 3 is too little too late. He/She has misdiagnosed the Pro throughout the Round, and therefore loses the argument points. I can't award anything else, so I have to give Pro a 3-0 decision.
Posted by IzmoMI 1 year ago
IzmoMI
No argument here.
Posted by TekNiix 1 year ago
TekNiix
Yes, Iacov.
Posted by Iacov 1 year ago
Iacov
So you support the law as is.
Posted by TekNiix 1 year ago
TekNiix
My apologies, Iacov.

That is exactly my point. The person who promotes hate speech, may not even have the mens rea (the mindset to hurt you). They may just hate on whatever they hate on, without 1. not wanting to harm the person, and 2. using the actual action to harm them.

In Canada (where I am from), you need to prove both mens rea and acteus rea in order to criminally charge someone.
Posted by TekNiix 1 year ago
TekNiix
My apologies, Iacov.

That is exactly my point. The person who promotes hate speech, may not even have the mens rea (the mindset to hurt you). They may just hate on whatever they hate on, without 1. not wanting to harm the person, and 2. using the actual action to harm them.

In Canada (where I am from), you need to prove both mens rea and acteus rea in order to criminally charge someone.
Posted by TekNiix 1 year ago
TekNiix
My apologies, Iacov.

That is exactly my point. The person who promotes hate speech, may not even have the mens rea (the mindset to hurt you). They may just hate on whatever they hate on, without 1. not wanting to harm the person, and 2. using the actual action to harm them.

In Canada (where I am from), you need to prove both mens rea and acteus rea in order to criminally charge someone.
Posted by TekNiix 1 year ago
TekNiix
My apologies, Iacov.

That is exactly my point. The person who promotes hate speech, may not even have the mens rea (the mindset to hurt you). They may just hate on whatever they hate on, without 1. not wanting to harm the person, and 2. using the actual action to harm them.

In Canada (where I am from), you need to prove both mens rea and acteus rea in order to criminally charge someone.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by FuzzyCatPotato 1 year ago
FuzzyCatPotato
TekNiixQueenDaisyTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro conceded that violent hate speech should be prosecuted -- and thus illegal. Thus, Con has provided a counterpoint to the absolutist topic that "Hate speech ought to ALWAYS be legal". Providing a counterexample to an absolute statement is a logically valid way of disproving it.
Vote Placed by dsjpk5 1 year ago
dsjpk5
TekNiixQueenDaisyTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: As Con pointed out, Pro agreed there are times hate speech should be illegal. This is tantamount to a concession since the contention says it should always be legal.
Vote Placed by paintballvet18 1 year ago
paintballvet18
TekNiixQueenDaisyTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: See Comments.