Does the United States have a double-standard on freedom of speech?

Asked by: Ariesx
  • Freedom of speech simply doesn't exist

    Proof 1: Say "bomb" on an aeroplane
    Proof 2: Verbally assault a police officer
    Proof 3: A rapper in California recently arrested for an album
    Proof 4: Students at Colorado College found guilty of "violence" for posting a parody flyer
    Proof 5: The existence of the term "hate speech"
    Proof 6: Lying in court is obstruction of justice
    Proof 7: Copyright law also overrides free speech
    Proof 8: Slander

    Freedom of speech should exist (though, shouldn't always necessarily be exercised) but it simply doesn't. I'm speaking as someone from the UK (where free speech is limited just a tad more than the US) but mostly about the US, though the same things mostly apply here too (except we have a more officially recognised "hate speech" law - probably for our own goods, ha). Lets face it, the US's precious constitution has been bent and shaped past all worth anyway. If I had a say (ha), I'd say just rip up the constitution, and write it again but make it more infallible.

  • Double Standards in America

    I think that the US has a big double standard on freedom of speech. For example, Muslims hate it when somebody criticizes their prophet. But, if somebody says something racist about black people, than they are shunned from society. I do not like people who are racist, but if someone is shunned from society for saying something really controversial, than we are all big hypocrites including me.

  • Yes, and it is everywhere

    I don't have to explain anything, ill just give you links to prove it.




    Here are some the gov future plans.


    Freedom of speech is slowly eroding right before our eyes. And as long as we continue to do nothing, these will continue to be common and accepted

  • Limits are not double standards unless they are misapplied

    There are reasonable limits to speech which do not automatically constitute double standards. For example, slander is illegal because lying about another person can do them harm. Inciting a panic in a theater by yelling "fire" is illegal because people can end up dead. Unless these limits are applied unfairly there is no double standard. In general, they are not misapplied.

  • Freedom of speech protects you from the legal system and that is it

    Freedom of speech does not mean people have to keep liking you regardless of what you say. It just means you are protected from legal measures being imposed against you based on what you say.

    People saying "X said something racist and I think we should all shun him." is itself an exercise of freedom of speech.

    There is a right to free speech. There is no right to be liked.

  • The fact that the freedom of speech is limited does not necessarily mean there is a double-standard.

    Proof 1: Say "bomb" on an airplane.
    This is not illegal in and of itself, it would depend on context. See 18 U.S.C. § 1038
    Proof 2: Verbally assault a police officer
    This is not at all illegal, being arrested for this is generally considered a form of police misconduct.
    Proof 4: Students at Colorado College found guilty of "violence" for posting a parody flyer
    This is an internal policy of the university, but be that as it may. Applying the policy it both the original publication that the students had satirized, and the satirization itself, would still create the same result as the satirization was more openly inflammatory.
    Proof 5: The existence of the term "hate speech"
    This term can apply to anyone engaging in such speech, and in and of itself does not limit speech. See. Brandenburg v. Ohio or Snyder v. Phelps (most recent)
    Proof 6: Lying in court is obstruction of justice
    Obstruction of justice is an interesting one, strictly speaking through the act of lying, you become complicit in the original crime.
    Proof 7: Copyright law also overrides free speech
    Copyright has nothing to do with free speech, since the ideas that you would be wanting to copy were not yours to begin with.
    Proof 8: Slander
    The purpose of freedom of speech is to be able to further the discussion of ideas, this is the core of any democracy. The purpose of slander is to fabricate lies out of thin air, in order to damage someone's reputation and livelihood. Slander does not only fail to promote free and open discussions, it damages them, and rightly should be prohibited in any good democracy.

    Proof 3: A rapper in California recently arrested for an album
    This is the only "proof" of yours that has any real merit, and I would HIGHLY doubt the law won't be overturned.

    Simply put, freedom of speech in the United States does exist. For the sake of civil society free speech should not be limitless, but as unconstrained as possible.

  • Hate speech can hurt

    You say words do not matter, but this cannot be true or you would't be using them. Words are public (unlike thoughts), so they must be dealt with in the public sphere. Remember that whole 2012 scare that went on a couple years back, it was miserable, but those are just words. Why shouldn't someone who invites violence with "hate speech" not be punished alongside the violator? What if someone got trampled in a movie theatre for yelling "fire" and nothing happened to the man? Or what if someone lied in court and instead of being punished by the law was simply rewarded by his conspiritors? Free speech comes at the cost of its manifestation. I think it should be regulated in certain instances, as actions should be in many others.

  • No, but most of the West does

    The United States literally allows Nazi's to march in stormtrooper uniforms, provided they are not harming anyone. In fact, our steadfast commitment to freedom of ALL speech has raised some brows everywhere from Israel to Europe.

    That being said, a lot of the West likes to censor, from the U.K's confiscation of videotapes from Seattle in 1999, to Israel getting all huffy about an opinionated political cartoon the DAY AFTER NETANYAHU GOT HOME FROM PROTESTING IN FAVOR OF THE JE SUIS CHARLIE PROTESTORS!

    In conclusion, the U.S has a steadfast commitment to freedom of speech that a lot of it's allies would say is too much (Nazism is banned in certain countries). To say otherwise would be the furthest thing from the truth.

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Craighawley215 says2015-01-16T16:51:31.383
I think that the original poster should have been slightly more specific. Do you mean that legally, America has a double standard on free speech? Or do you mean socially?

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