Is Prince Harry right about our 1st amendment being bonkers?

Chew Toy McCoy

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We have the freest of free speech, but as far as I can see other western countries that have slightly less free speech aren’t exactly dictatorships or lacking public dissent and protest. I really don’t know exactly what the differences are in their free speech, but it seems like ours is being pushed to its limit, and not in a positive way.
 

Thomas Veil

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I've held a similar feeling for quite a while now.

The First Amendment is our most prized right. (Sorry, 2A freaks.) And yet by having "the freest of free speech", as you put it, we've allowed fanatics and extremists to weaponize it and use it to brainwash our own people with false "information". They have turned our freedom against us.

I know I'm still searching for some kind of answer. People keep saying "The answer to bad free speech is more free speech"--but they've been saying that for several decades now and the problem just gets worse and worse and worse.
 

Yoused

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Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech …

It has been taken to extremes. There are laws that do abridge the freedom of speech, such as slander, incitement and recklessness (shouting 'theater!' In a crowded firehouse). And, realistically, there could be laws against wanton disinformation, which we should probably have.

To me, reading 1A indicates that the freedom of speech clause was meant as a way to protect people from lese majestie: in Thailand, you can get in serious trouble for anything other than fawning adoration of the Rama (king). In the history of European monarchies, people could get dungeoned just for saying a thing that bothered the king or the government. This was the issue that 1A was intended to address, and laws of other types, that do not pertain to vexing the halls of power, should not be considered out of bounds.

But one thing must be born in mind. If you look, you can probably find a NAMBLA website which, as I understand it, offers advice on how to accomplish their goals. To the vast majority of people, the very idea of it is passing vile. Yet, we can look at it, and that is a good thing. Because, allowing them to be out in the open helps us understand what they do and how they do it. This means we have a better idea what we can do to keep our lads safe.

This is true of the like of Aryan Nations and III% as well. I read The Turner Diaries of which I found a pdf online and it did not convince of the goodness of its agenda. In fact, Chapter 22 was one of the nastiest vignettes I have ever read, putting the Third Reich even to shame, for their lackadaisical approach. Yes, some people will be reached by effluent like that, but most will not. It is better to have the ugly out where we can see it than slinking through catacombs beneath us only to surface unexpectedly, catching us off guard.

So, yes, we probably could refine the way 1A is interpreted (that goes for the religion part as well), but it must be handled extremely carefully, lest we lose some of the counterintuitive advantages it provides us.
 

Chew Toy McCoy

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Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech …

It has been taken to extremes. There are laws that do abridge the freedom of speech, such as slander, incitement and recklessness (shouting 'theater!' In a crowded firehouse). And, realistically, there could be laws against wanton disinformation, which we should probably have.

To me, reading 1A indicates that the freedom of speech clause was meant as a way to protect people from lese majestie: in Thailand, you can get in serious trouble for anything other than fawning adoration of the Rama (king). In the history of European monarchies, people could get dungeoned just for saying a thing that bothered the king or the government. This was the issue that 1A was intended to address, and laws of other types, that do not pertain to vexing the halls of power, should not be considered out of bounds.

But one thing must be born in mind. If you look, you can probably find a NAMBLA website which, as I understand it, offers advice on how to accomplish their goals. To the vast majority of people, the very idea of it is passing vile. Yet, we can look at it, and that is a good thing. Because, allowing them to be out in the open helps us understand what they do and how they do it. This means we have a better idea what we can do to keep our lads safe.

This is true of the like of Aryan Nations and III% as well. I read The Turner Diaries of which I found a pdf online and it did not convince of the goodness of its agenda. In fact, Chapter 22 was one of the nastiest vignettes I have ever read, putting the Third Reich even to shame, for their lackadaisical approach. Yes, some people will be reached by effluent like that, but most will not. It is better to have the ugly out where we can see it than slinking through catacombs beneath us only to surface unexpectedly, catching us off guard.

So, yes, we probably could refine the way 1A is interpreted (that goes for the religion part as well), but it must be handled extremely carefully, lest we lose some of the counterintuitive advantages it provides us.

I think bringing back the fairness doctrine in news would go a long way. Basically you need to give equal weight to the other side of the coin. With that on the table it would probably prevent a lot of these bullshit stories/views from going mainstream in the first place. It probably prevented it before Regan killed it.

I'd also do a whole separation of state and church type deal with news networks. No opinion shows. If they still want to do their slant then they are welcome to report news the other slanted networks aren't reporting, but no chiming in with political opinions about it.
 
D

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I think bringing back the fairness doctrine in news would go a long way. Basically you need to give equal weight to the other side of the coin. With that on the table it would probably prevent a lot of these bullshit stories/views from going mainstream in the first place. It probably prevented it before Regan killed it.

I'd also do a whole separation of state and church type deal with news networks. No opinion shows. If they still want to do their slant then they are welcome to report news the other slanted networks aren't reporting, but no chiming in with political opinions about it.
Doesn’t that just mean they have to present an opposing view to everything?

“scientists announced climate change is likely to increase extreme weather events”

“That’s just a conspiracy created by the Chinese ninjas with the space lasers to force us to get gay married in underground bunkers”.

I mean I get the idea that you expose it to questioning so it’s shown to be loony tunes, but I’m not really convinced that helps when the networks that will actually question the loons are already untrusted by those that buy into the loony ideas.
 
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What I meant but didn’t really word very well above: it changes things that civilised society can accept as a knowable fact, into everything just being an opinion.
 

The-Real-Deal82

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I must admit I find the 1st amendment gives cowards the right in some cases to abuse people and hide behind the ‘freedom of speech’ narrative. It removes accountability in my view, not always but often and I am happier with the version of this freedom in my country.

I’m not comfortable with individuals protesting at funerals, abusing vulnerable people online and being ok with it because it’s their opinion and right. This may be why US based forums turn a blind eye to xenophobia and racism in some cases? Who knows.

I don’t think Harry is doing himself any favours. He’s moved to a different country to get away from all the media attention and has done nothing but interviews since he got there. Criticising the law of that country also isn’t going to gain him many fans. I remember Piers Morgan criticising guns and although most of the western world probably agreed with him (rare I know), it was never going to be greeted well lol.
 
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I must admit I find the 1st amendment gives cowards the right in some cases to abuse people and hide behind the ‘freedom of speech’ narrative. It removes accountability in my view, not always but often and I am happier with the version of this freedom in my country.

I’m not comfortable with individuals protesting at funerals, abusing vulnerable people online and being ok with it because it’s their opinion and right. This may be why US based forums turn a blind eye to xenophobia and racism in some cases? Who knows.

I don’t think Harry is doing himself any favours. He’s moved to a different country to get away from all the media attention and has done nothing but interviews since he got there. Criticising the law of that country also isn’t going to gain him many fans. I remember Piers Morgan criticising guns and although most of the western world probably agreed with him (rare I know), it was never going to be greeted well lol.
I don't follow 'celebrity' news much, but I've seen the odd headline about ginger nuts "quitting" the royal family to "get away from the attention", and then... wait what, you're hosting a tv show with Oprah, and still going by the title "prince"? Ah the quiet life!
 

Chew Toy McCoy

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I’d also like to know what the lesser free speech is like in other countries that have some form of free speech.

I sometimes feel like we’re right where Europe was just before Mousilini and Hitler took power, a bunch of extremists erecting podiums. If there’s a big market crash expect bombs to start dropping.
 
D

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He has stepped away from royal duties. He is still a prince and a member of the royal family.
Oh. So he wants none of the 'responsibility' but still wants the title. I should have used a different name for him. Still Starts with "Ginger C" though.
 
U

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I must admit I find the 1st amendment gives cowards the right in some cases to abuse people and hide behind the ‘freedom of speech’ narrative. It removes accountability in my view, not always but often and I am happier with the version of this freedom in my country.
As an expat "over there-to-here" gal, I have to agree.

Never once did I even think about "Freedom of speech" in England - it was one of those givens to me. Now, granted it was never an absolute given either - many's the time we heard of D-Notices being slapped on newspapers etc.

That said, I never felt that was really much of an issue.

Over here with the 1st amendment what I've noticed is not only a huge amount of staggering ignorance as to what the 1st does, and does not cover, but also a huge amount of hatred that is causing the massive split in the country based upon racial and gender based hate speech that cannot be stopped.

It's also thrown in your face in an almost daily basis.

There are many who believe the US Constitution is fine as it is - I'm not one of them. I think it was potentially fine for about 150-200 years, but I'm still not convinced that the Founding fathers would have been so 'free' with their lack of limits had the old crystal ball been fully functional.

The idea that you can spread lies with impunity (and legal protection), or, kill 50 people at once with a semi-automatic rifle just because you got fired from a job, is something I'm sure would be an anathema to them.

That said, the rights I have as a gay woman to marry another woman was recently enshrined by the courts as constitutional - not sure the old boys would have wanted that either. I got the same rights in England and Wales as well now - difference being that the legislature made it so, so it's less likely to be rolled back by a future Supreme Court.

The founding fathers were above all else, honorable men, and they believed in honor first and foremost. The concept that so many - especially in leadership, could choose dishonor over honesty on a national scale, wasn't something that crossed their minds at the time. Sure they didn't trust the little people, but those in charge?

So whilst we're living to the letter of the Constitution, I'm not convinced one iota we're living in the spirit of it. As we know however, the spirit means nothing legally speaking, so we're left with the letter.

So we're screwed.

My belief is that the Constitution of the United States built America, and made it the proud nation it once was. I fear that the very same Constitution will be the death of America as well. It's no longer a framework to build society on - it's a weapon to be used against the people by the most powerful, and a very useful weapon in the hands of the cultists.
 

SuperMatt

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On topic. was Sharna Walker exercising her freedom of speech, or is she just a racist piece of trash whom we should not tolerate and therefore she will need to appear in court for both verbal and physical assault (the push and spitting)?


Freedom of speech from government tyranny / prosecution = sure

Freedom of speech to say whatever the hell you feel like to other people = I am not cool with that. People need to realise that with freedom comes responsibility and consequences.
Freedom of speech is NOT freedom from consequences. And not 100% of speech is protected.
 
D

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On topic. was Sharna Walker exercising her freedom of speech, or is she just a racist piece of trash whom we should not tolerate and therefore she will need to appear in court for both verbal and physical assault (the push and spitting)?


Freedom of speech from government tyranny / prosecution = sure

Freedom of speech to say whatever the hell you feel like to other people = I am not cool with that. People need to realise that with freedom comes responsibility and consequences.

I'd be surprised if calling someone a racial slur (in America) ended up in criminal charges, but pushing and spitting, surely means assault charges?
 
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