Free Speech

The New Censors

It's crucial that we all speak up for free speech.

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Do you say what you think? That's risky! You may get fired!

You've probably heard about a New York Times editor resigning after approving an opinion piece by Senator Tom Cotton that suggested the military to step in to end riots.

Many Times reporters tweeted out the same alarmist wording, "Running this puts Black NY Times staffers in danger."

Really? How?

In my new video, Robby Soave, a Reason magazine editor who writes about young radicals, explains, "They only claim it because that's their tactic for seizing power in the workplace."

They learned this tactic from so-called woke professors and fellow activists at expensive colleges, says Soave.

Last year, Harvard students demanded that law professor Ron Sullivan resign as a resident dean. Why? He'd agreed to be part of Harvey Weinstein's legal defense team.

A female student said, "I don't feel safe!" although Sullivan had been a dean for many years. Sullivan resigned.

At UCLA, business school lecturer Gordon Klein rejected a request to give black students different treatment on their final exam because of George Floyd's death. Klein pointed out that since the class was online, he had no way of knowing which students were black. He also told students: "remember that MLK famously said that people should not be evaluated based on the color of their skin."

The activist group Color of Change (which once demanded that I be fired) launched a petition to have Klein "terminated for his extremely insensitive, dismissive, and woefully racist response." UCLA quickly caved. Klein is on mandatory leave.

Now that many former college radicals have jobs at elite media companies, they demand that newspapers not say certain things.

When, in response to looting during George Floyd protests, the Philadelphia Inquirer ran the insensitive headline, "Buildings Matter, Too," 44 staff members claimed that "puts our lives at risk." Their letter didn't give any evidence as to how it threatened their lives (in fact, today both blacks and whites are safer than ever), but they won. The editor resigned.

A week later, young activists at NBC news tried to silence The Federalist, a respected conservative site that NBC labelled as "far-right." The Federalist had published a column that said, correctly, that the media falsely claimed that violent riots were peaceful. But the column did contain a mistake. It quoted a government official saying tear gas was not used, when it had been used.

NBC then ran an article bragging that Google blocked The Federalist's ads after an "NBC news verification unit" brought The Federalist's "racism" to Google's attention. NBC's reporter even thanked left-wing activist groups for their "collaboration."

But NBC was wrong. Google didn't cut off The Federalist. Google merely threatened that if The Federalist didn't police its comments section.

It was one time when the activist mob's smears failed. But they keep trying to kill all sorts of expression.

Some now even want the children's TV show Paw Patrol canceled because it suggests law enforcement is noble.

When activists decide that certain words or arguments are "offensive," no one must use those words.

But "we're supposed to occasionally offend each other," says Soave, "because you might be wrong. We have to have a conversation about it. We have to challenge dogma. What if we were still with the principle that you couldn't speak out against the King?! That's the history of the Middle Ages."

That's when authorities arrested Galileo for daring to say that the earth revolved around the sun.

"That's the condition that all humans lived under until just the last 300 years, and it was a much less happy place," says Soave. "Then we came to an idea that we improve society by having frank and sometimes difficult conversations about policy issues, philosophy, about how we're going to get along and live together."

Life has been much better since people acquired the right to speak freely.

Elite colleges spread the idea that speech can be a form of violence. "Words are like bullets!" they say.

But words are words; bullets are bullets. We must keep them apart.

When entitled leftists declare themselves the sole arbiters of truth, it's crucial that we all speak up for free speech.

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  1. That female student at Harvard is attending a university endowed by slave owners. She must be cancelled immediately.

    1. ★My last month paycheck was for 1500 dollars… All i did was simple online work from comfort at home for 3-4 hours/day that I got from this agency I discovered over the internet and they paid me for it 95 bucks every hour.

      See—>More here

  2. You’re tilting at windmills, Stossel. If you can’t see why, I can’t possibly explain it to you here.

    1. I personally resent this statement about windmills, but I would like to point out that, contrary to Mr. Soave’s words quoted in the article above, nobody should be offending anybody, and when the “free speech” gets out of hand, at least here at NYU we know exactly what to do. See the documentation of our nation’s leading criminal “parody” case at:

      https://raphaelgolbtrial.wordpress.com/

  3. Well, The Federalist didn’t ‘police’ its comment section – which, along with the usual bunch of moronic posts from both left and right, had a few very informed and informative commenters, particularly helpful re: the railroading of General Flynn – it shut it down altogether. It was promised that comments would be back up within three days; that was about a week ago, and they are not back.

    So, NBC, Google, and The Federalist have joined in silencing – censoring – us the commenters.

    1. So thank you, Reason, for allowing all of us morons to keep talking about woodchippers in your comment pages. Cutting off ad revenue would definitely hit ‘em where it hurt, but Reason gets credit in my book for standing up to an even more ominous and odious threat from a US Attorney.

      1. I quit working at shoprite and now I make $65-85 per/h. How? I’m working online! My work didn’t exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on something new… after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now I couldn’t be happier.

        Here’s what I do………………Home Profit System

    2. And it would be a hell of a lot less efficient, but what if The Federalist went back to running batches of parchment through a printing press, and hawking it on the street corners of ye olde Philadelphia, Boston, and Charlestowne? I’d love to see the “democracy loving” woke scolds rail at that, completely ignorant of their irony.

    3. I used to read the comments on Federalist. The worst part of it being shut off is that a lot of paid trolls are now filing for unemployment.

  4. I figured libertarians would be pleased.

    This is just HOA libertarianism asserting itself with right of association and “not with my dollars” boycotts asserting itself in the marketplace. Social ostracization instead of law.

    What’s that? Only when it is in condemnation of things I dislike?

    Oh.

    1. Social censorship is less bad than government-enforced censorship but actual debate and discussion is better.

    2. “not with my dollars” boycotts

      That’s not what’s happening though. It’s a few people complaining to even fewer people who, for some reason, cave in and fire people thinking that will make the harassment go away, which of course it won’t. It’s all still a matter of freedom of association, but that doesn’t mean it’s above criticism.

  5. Cop Elizabeth Nolan Brown loves silencing people. Particularly people who noted she was a bit too much of a jerk over the sandwich incident. https://twitter.com/phl43/status/1275420846954250241

    ENB, the petty pretend-Libertarian MUST be fired.

    1. Damn. WTF? “Good riddance”?

      I never really read Star Slate Codex and I don’t follow Elizabeth Nolan Brown, so I don’t know why she doesn’t like him, except because he’s “erudite”. What the hell did he write that has her wanting him doxxed?

  6. So Reason actually does have one writer who is against censorship on all areas, not just government censorship.

    1. Notice the difference. Libertarians can see that censorship at all levels is wrong, but simultaneously not use the force of government to enforce their beliefs on private actors.

      It’s one thing to say that these private “censors” are wrong. It’s another thing to use regulation as a cudgel to get them to step in line.

      1. And yet you keep misrepresenting the arguments of others. Like denying extra legal benefits for favored groups exist, some of which proudly censor. It is odd you keep confusing extra legal protection removal as new regulation.

        1. “Extra legal protection” from getting sued over the content they host isn’t even the issue here. The issue is about you wanting them to host content that they don’t want to host.

          Again, tell me how you care about Section 230 other than it being a cudgel to force social media platforms to comply with your worldview?

          And if you remove section 230, do you think that social media will host more or less content? The question is important.

          1. Just come out and say your in favor of cronyism as long as it’s the right cronies

            1. Or property rights?

      2. JesseSPAZ the ultra-conservative fascist-type can NOT see the difference that you’ve spelled out there, Leo. It is because too many of his “friends” un-friended him on FaceBook (for constant far-right, nonsensical wind-bagging), so now he wants Government Almighty to punish FaceBook!

        SOME of us, it seems, who are semi-secretly (furtively) psychologically fragile, need SCAPEGOATS!!! It is ALWAYS the fault of SOMEONE ELSE!!!

        1. Really now, it’s not healthy to mix in crystal meth with your morning coffee.

          1. When all you have is decaf, you have to improvise.

        2. Hihn, you really need to take the meds the doctor gives you.

      3. Notice the difference. Libertarians can see that censorship at all levels is wrong, but simultaneously not use the force of government to enforce their beliefs on private actors.

        You will scratch your chins and then say “well start your Twitter” but none of you people will actually do anything about it beyond lip service. So there is that.

        And no one is asking the government to do anything beyond enforce anti trust law and ensure that the freedom to censor comes with the responsibility of being responsible for the resulting content.

        If you want to run a platform and censor it, you can censor it to your heart’s content. But with that freedom comes the responsibility for the resulting content. If you claim the ability to censor, then you are basically a publisher and responsible for user content in the same way a newspaper is responsible for the letters to the editor it publishes or the guest OPeds.

        Serious question, do you ever plant to give an honest response to that point? Or do you just plan to keep repeating the same tired strawman that you do here. You used to be one of the smarter people on here. Why have you turned into such a mendacious dumb ass on this issue?

        1. John, are you ready for the demise of Reason.com comment forum, after you have your way? Reason will have to charge us $3.20 per word, to pay all the lawyers to vet our comments! Because Reason has deeper pockets than most of us, and lawyer scum is after MONEY!!!

          Can you read and understand the below? Or are you too blinded by your ideology?

          On the vast majority of college campuses, liberal “political correctness” gets its way. And this is heavily Government Almighty funded. “PC” gets its way, for the most part (perhaps a wee tad less than in academia) in employment (discrimination) in general, and in the media.
          And then conservatives suddenly expect to get it THEIR WAY if we set aside legal protections against endless lawsuits, on the internet, ie., kill Section 230?!?! WTF, conservatives, what kind of fantasy world do you live in? The PC bastards WILL eat your lunch, if you kill section 230! Lawyers are educated in PC in PC-oriented law schools, and they will PC you to death, when you sue for your “free speech” from Twitter etc. (which you don’t own, of course… “You didn’t build that”!). 230 PROTECTS you from more armies of ravaging lawyers!

          1. You wouldn’t kill section 230. You would say to avail yourself of it, you can’t engage in content based censorship. And you could exempt small boards and publications like reason. Say any platform with say fewer than 10,000 registered users obtains the protection regardless. But those larger than that must either administer in a content neutral way or lose the protection.

            This isn’t hard. But I will give you credit, you at least tried to give a serious answer to the point, which is more than Leo ever does.

            1. Well, at least that’s more reasonable than outright killing section 230. BUT… The devil is in the details! You know how a Twitter mob (? I think it was) pulled a bunch of tickets to swamp Donald Trump’s recent event in Tulsa? We’d have similar mobs coming to Reason.com, to deliberately exceed your “10,000 registered users” limit, just so that Reason.com could be sued to death!

              Complex laws and regulations typically have exploitable loop-holes like this! Complexity just feeds the lawyers and the loop-hole-exploiters! All that kind of “unanticipated side effects” messing around is NOT a productive activity!

            2. Say any platform with say fewer than 10,000 registered users obtains the protection regardless.

              I’d agree with specific harm. If Google/Ford can show a significant hit to their bottom line as the result of comments on The Federalist it’s possible that The Federalist may be engaged in something resembling slander rather than free speech and Google/Ford shouldn’t have to pay to be slandered.

              1. But, of course, specific harm would assume that internet speech is just speech and not some sort of extra special mythical speech that only congress can protect in good faith.

        2. and ensure that the freedom to censor comes with the responsibility of being responsible for the resulting content

          That doesn’t sound like freedom at all.

          There is no way that Facebook, Twitter, etc can be capable of monitoring its content in any way that wouldn’t leave them susceptible to thousands of lawsuits daily and exist as they do today. You’re essentially using Section 230 as a cudgel to get your way.

          “Nice website you got there. It’d be a shame if anything happened to it. Perhaps you should host Dennis Prager after all, capiche?”

      4. I did see a suggestion that they should add a quick line to Section 230 that the censorship cannot be for speech that would be legal under the US Constitution. Seems like an exceptionally fair suggestion.

        1. I see a problem with this… Suppose that the judges (after long-drawn-out fighting and lots of money spent) determine that totally outright, nasty racism (in comments) is “Constitutional”. Reason.com is then suddenly SWAMPED with racist comments that they can NOT remove! SOME of the racist comments will even be “false flags” comments by leftist mobs! For the explicit purpose of pissing off SOOO many people, that they will boycott Reason.com, the Reason magazine hardcopy, and all who advertise on Reason web site or magazine! Now, to “protect” Reason from this meddling here, are we going to REQUIRE readers and advertisers to support Reason, to protect Reason from boycotts? Boycotts that were CREATED by your meddling in the first place?

          Try and THINK IT THROUGH on unwanted side effects!!!

          1. “I see a problem with this… Suppose that the judges (after long-drawn-out fighting and lots of money spent) determine that totally outright, nasty racism (in comments) is “Constitutional”.”

            Which, mind you, it undoubtedly is.

            “Reason.com is then suddenly SWAMPED with racist comments that they can NOT remove! SOME of the racist comments will even be “false flags” comments by leftist mobs!”

            So be it. Sounds rough.

            “For the explicit purpose of pissing off SOOO many people, that they will boycott Reason.com, the Reason magazine hardcopy, and all who advertise on Reason web site or magazine!”

            So it’d be like…now?

            You realize that Reason is Koch’s charity case and not a remotely self-sustaining enterprise.

            “Now, to “protect” Reason from this meddling here, are we going to REQUIRE readers and advertisers to support Reason, to protect Reason from boycotts?”

            Yup. Basically. Sounds rough.

            They could always forfeit the publisher protections if they feel censoring is that necessary a step.

        2. I did see a suggestion that they should add a quick line to Section 230 that the censorship cannot be for speech that would be legal under the US Constitution. Seems like an exceptionally fair suggestion.

          Not to fault you personally, but I can remember a time when actual libertarians favored doing away with nonsense, complex, and redundant laws rather than adding to them.

          Textualism and originalism was dead before Scalia died. Roberts has just been fucking the corpse.

          1. Given how “libertarians” refer to Section 230 as the internet’s First Amendment, you won’t find many libertarians willing to destroy it (I’m ALL for removing it entirely, mind you)

        3. It’s essentially telling Facebook and Twitter to bake that cake. I’m not sure how you don’t see this.

          1. Awesome, Leo, good job, short and sweet!

            “Baker, bake me that gay wedding cake, or I will sic Government Almighty on you” is, indeed, within gagging and barfing distance of “Twitter, publish my comments, or I will sic Government Almighty on you”!

            What else can one say about THAT?!

          2. No, it’s absolutely telling them “If you wish to censor, fine. What you don’t censor becomes your speech. It is your call”

            1. Shall we also hold sellers of pens, pencils, and papers responsible for the letters that people write on them?

              Hey you pencil-seller you: If you refuse to sell pencils to an institution that you believe to be horribly, NAZI-like racists, then… “If you wish to censor, fine. What you don’t censor becomes your speech. It is your call”

              damikesc
              June.24.2020 at 11:11 am (above)… Is OK with using Government Almighty to FORCE you to support buying magazines and selling advertising to organizations that you do not support!!!

              Quote:
              “Now, to “protect” Reason from this meddling here, are we going to REQUIRE readers and advertisers to support Reason, to protect Reason from boycotts?”

              Yup. Basically. Sounds rough. (Quote damikesc)

              Do you REALIZE what an utterly fascist authoritarian you are? Some self-examination is in order here! From WHERE do you get your self-righteous micro-management-of-others pig powers?

        4. This is wrong. Lots of speech is protected by the 1st Amendment, including commercial speech. So Twitter should be barred from deleting Tweets from competitors that criticize Twitter and promote their own services?

  7. This rings pretty hollow when posted at the site that employees an advocate of doxxing and going after ppls careers over political differences.

    1. That doxing is justified because or reasons.

    2. Worrying that other readers aren’t following, MattXIV’s post above refers to Elizabeth Nolan Brown’s petty tyrant behavior. She’s not a libertarian, but IS taking libertarian charitable funds to fuel her childish attacks on decent people.

  8. “They only claim it because that’s their tactic for seizing power in the workplace.”

    Unpossible. Black people do not lie.

  9. It was one time when the activist mob’s smears failed.

    Not really. The Federalist killed their comments section in response.

    1. And that was what Google wanted. The leftist mob is fine with tame conservative publications like the Federalist. They can be controlled through demonetization. What they want to control is the ability of the average person to speak their mind and connect with each other such that they realize that they are not alone in their views. The woke idiots who run Google know they are in the minority and most people would hate what they want the world to look like. So, like all totalitarians, they plan to overcome that by controlling public speech so that everyone thinks they are alone in objecting.

      1. They can be controlled through demonetization.

        How though? There are other ad services besides Google.

        And by caving, The Federalist will now have fewer, maybe a lot fewer, visitors and less ad revenue.

        Most people block all ads anyway.

  10. Klein pointed out that since the class was online, he had no way of knowing which students were black. He also told students: “remember that MLK famously said that people should not be evaluated based on the color of their skin.”

    The activist group Color of Change (which once demanded that I be fired) launched a petition to have Klein “terminated for his extremely insensitive, dismissive, and woefully racist response.”

    Yep, MLK is now considered “racist.” Welcome to clown-world.

    1. Check out the white beardo calling the black cop a nigger.

      https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/tyler-o-neil/2020/06/23/watch-white-blm-protester-calls-black-cop-n-word-in-profane-tirade-n567409

      Clown world is right. But, can’t the world come together in the understanding and support of someone preferably the black cop beating that smug little bastard within an inch of his life? Here is one case of police brutality that anyone can get behind.

      1. Are you saying Black Lives Don’t Really Matter?

  11. At UCLA, business school lecturer Gordon Klein rejected a request to give black students different treatment on their final exam because of George Floyd’s death

    So he was asked to violate the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment?

  12. History tends to rhyme doesn’t it? Go back 100 years and one sees the shoe on the other foot. Palmer/Hoover Red Scare raids where one could get deported or jailed for expressing socialist ideas. Blacks demanding (and getting) federal troops be used to quell white rioters who were burning black neighborhoods and killing Negroes. Eventually, enough “regular folks” were repulsed by the whole scene and it ended. That will happen again this time, perhaps even on Nov. 3rd.

    1. And all it will take is 2 or 3 decades of massive depression and world wars

  13. Many Times reporters tweeted out the same alarmist wording, “Running this puts Black NY Times staffers in danger.”

    And if the heads at the NYT responded by saying “you’re fired”, the rebellion would have been over, and they’d have new hires replacing them the next day.

    Most J-school grads would commit murder for an NYT job.

    1. Most J-school grads would commit murder for an NYT job.

      Not after they fired a bunch of black people because they were all racists.

      Not that I’d mourn the loss but it’s a motivation the execs at the NYT would have to consider.

      1. J-school grads want jobs FAR more than racial solidarity. Note how few white reporters forfeit their jobs for blacks when complaining about how bad blacks have it.

        Virtue signalling is free, after all.

  14. “”Last year, Harvard students demanded that law professor Ron Sullivan resign as a resident dean. Why? He’d agreed to be part of Harvey Weinstein’s legal defense team.

    A female student said, “I don’t feel safe!” although Sullivan had been a dean for many years. Sullivan resigned.””

    I wonder if she would feel safe with Hillary Clinton who defended a child rapist.

    1. I wonder if she would feel safe with Hillary Clinton who defended a child rapist.

      Uh, yes. If she’d defend a child rapist, she’d most certainly defend me! Duh.

  15. But NBC was wrong. Google didn’t cut off The Federalist. Google merely threatened that if The Federalist didn’t police its comments section.

    From what I’ve read, even that is and overstatement.

    Google threatened to block ads from one specific article on The Federalist website over allegedly abusive comments.

  16. “Life has been much better since people acquired the right to speak freely.”

    People have the right to speak freely. That hasn’t changed. What’s changed is in a time of social turmoil, the stakes are much higher and there are consequences. Free speech doesn’t mean you won’t be held to account.

  17. “What if we were still with the principle that you couldn’t speak out against the King?! That’s the history of the Middle Ages.”

    That’s when authorities arrested Galileo for daring to say that the earth revolved around the sun.”

    No, he was “arrested” for telling the Pope what Catholic theology should and must be.

    Galileo was advancing a theory that many Catholic astronomers believed to be true. With the technology of the day he could not prove his theory. The problem wasn’t his theory, the problem was stating is as a fact when it could not yet be proved.

    He had another theory that the Earth’s rotation caused the tides and there movements. He was wrong about that theory.

  18. Historically, hate speech justifies and motivates hate crimes and has led to genocide. Hate speech is NOT speech you hate but speech that promotes or incites harm to the rights of others, from discrimination in hiring and renting to violence, which ranges from lynchings to mass murder.

    Racist rhetoric is one form of hate speech; and while individual libel is a crime, collective libel, which harms millions, is not in the US, based on a historically false assumption that allowing hate speech is its own disinfectant. If that were true, there would have been no genocide of natives in the US (sub-human, savages, animals…Andrew Jackson commanded his soldier to kill the women and children as part of an extermination campaign) and slavery (sub-human, savages, incapable of freedom, etc), which also resulted in the deaths of millions.

    One example: when Trump, having digested the propaganda lessons of Hitler’s collected speeches (“A Jew gave it to me,” he lied), started his campaign by saying Mexico was sending (sic) “criminals and rapists,” he not only lied (undocumented immigrants have a 50% lower crime rate than natives) but he incited discrimination and violence. A landlord who believed Trump (and it seems tens of millions of people do) would not rent to a person he perceived to be a Mexican, nor hire him….and hate crimes of violence soared after he repeated these lies over and over to rally his base of racists.
    Tolerance of intolerance detroys human freedom: that is not a theory or a speculation but the lesson of history. Dehumanizing rhetoric (Trump called asylum seekers “invaders” and an infestation and three horrific mass murderers use Trump’s terms to justify their motivation….for we do kill invaders, cockroaches, parasites, vermin, etc.

    Hate speech, which uses collective libel, to incite destruction of the rights of scapegoated populations, is the enemy of free speech. Would you defend Hitler’s right to demonize Jews?

    1. “Would you defend Hitler’s right to demonize Jews?”
      He could try; but only the idiots would follow along like the sheeple they are.

  19. I haven’t used Google in years – The federalist should tell Google to stick it where the sun doesn’t shine as well as any/all the others who are being censored by them. Let it turn into a liberal hellhole that no one but a few imbeciles use. Sounds like they deserve to go down.

  20. YOUR speech is violence!!!! But MY violence is speech!

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