Poll: Your thoughts...
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View poll results: Your thoughts...
I would allow both protests.
84 78%
I would allow the EDL protest, but ban the Islamic protest.
4 4%
I would ban the EDL protest, but allow the Islamic protest.
1 1%
I would ban both protests.
19 18%
Voters: 108.
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#1
Was talking to a friend about this the other day who claimed the EDL (a right wing bunch of thugs in the UK, for those who don't know) should be banned from conducting protests. His argument was that they were just there to provoke and incite hatred.

I asked him what he thought about the other side of the coin - an extreme Muslim protest, denouncing Western values and the like (essentially playing devils advocate).

He stumbled a bit, saying he didn't know. I just laughed and said he was obviously just trying to uphold his progressive, liberal standards and was essentially being a big old hypocrite.

Anyway, what does the Pit think?
#2
They should be allowed to hold their protests once they are not actively trying to incite violence eg; chanting burn the foreigners or whatever. I dont agree that holding a protest in the name of extreme or unpopular opinions counts as inciting violence however.
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#3
I think they have as much right to protest as anyone else, but as always they should be watched and any of the bastards actually breaking a law should be dealt with. The last thing that I would do is criminalise it as it will bring far more attention to it then it deserves.
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#4
The right to protest is one of the few things that haven't been taken away from us yet.

The more 'extreme' protests that take place though, the less time we have to keep that right.
I disagree strongly with anything extremist, as it usually results in violence or deaths, but it seems that these types of protests are becoming more and more prevalent and common.

We'll lose the right to protest at some point in the future
#5
Quote by PaulyVengeance
The right to protest is one of the few things that haven't been taken away from us yet.

The more 'extreme' protests that take place though, the less time we have to keep that right.
I disagree strongly with anything extremist, as it usually results in violence or deaths, but it seems that these types of protests are becoming more and more prevalent and common.

We'll lose the right to protest at some point in the future


So in the interest of keeping the right to protest we should not protest?
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#6
Everyone has a right to protest, unless it involves violence.
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#7
Doesn't the UK have laws against inciting violence with hate speech?
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#8
Quote by Mr.DeadDuck
So in the interest of keeping the right to protest we should not protest?



I didn't say that now, did I?

If humans could work out a way to protest and get their point across without resorting to violence and rioting, all would be well.
#9
Copy and paste of what I posted in some other thread about a similar idea:

No, of course I wouldn't suck it up - but my being upset by what you're doing doesn't take precedence over your right to do it. If you want to be waste your time and be a dick in a such manner then power to you, the same goes for people who want to be racist or homophobic. They have the right to do that, that's the whole point of free speech and free thought. It's stupid viewpoint, but its one that we have to allow, because you can't pick and choose what subjects are included in free speech.

A free society is exactly one where people can go around offending others without reproach - because their insults are ****ing stupid, and shouldn't offend people. If we had worthy education and media systems the issue of homophobia, racism, anti-xxxxism would be massively diminished - but saying 'hey! you have the right to free speech, except in that field' is just stupid and hypocritical. People have the right to be utterly stupid, that's one of the downsides of free society. They can throw punches towards your face all they like, its when they make contact that their right to do it ends.


You can't claim that one group gets to protest and another doesn't, even if their protests are bigoted and stupid.
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#10
Violent protests and protest that intentionally incite hatred shouldn't be allowed to continue. Simple as, regardless of whether it's the EDL, Westborough Baptists, extremist Muslims or anyone else.
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#11
Everyone should be allowed their rights as long as they don't infringe the rights of others. Both sides should be allowed to voice their opinions. Just because I don't agree does not make them wrong.

Quote by PaulyVengeance
The right to protest is one of the few things that haven't been taken away from us yet.

Last edited by metal4eva_22 at Feb 27, 2012,
#12
Quote by StewieSwan
Doesn't the UK have laws against inciting violence with hate speech?



Yeah, cause I know the USA does. They wouldn't allow hate speech in either situation. I'm more unclear on when a protest becomes a public disturbance that the police can break up.
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#13
If we're going to ban EDL protests, we should probably do so on the basis that they have an unnerving tendency to devolve into gangs of violent, over-excited football hooligans intimidating any vaguely brown person unlucky to be in proximity, rather than the paranoid and factually inaccurate rubbish they tend to actually express.
#14
I'm all for free speech but, these protests just seem to want to cause more hatred.

There's a difference between speaking your view and enforcing it onto others.
Both parties are wrong, IMO.

EDIT: However, I still think people should be allowed to express themselves. I just think that, if that expression involves murder and possible genocide, they may have taken it too far.
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Last edited by Crazyedd123 at Feb 27, 2012,
#17
Quote by kaptkegan
Yeah, cause I know the USA does. They wouldn't allow hate speech in either situation. I'm more unclear on when a protest becomes a public disturbance that the police can break up.


And you would be....oh....what's the word I'm looking for....OH....there it is!

Wrong.

The US most certainly does NOT have any law forbidding 'hate' speech. That's for the other 'progressive, liberal' democracies that are held in such high esteem here...

The way to combat hate speech isn't with censorship, it's with better speech.
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#18
I'd want them to have the right to protest but I'd also want a 100 ton block of concrete to crush every single one of them at the same time...
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#19
Quote by fender_696
Just realised there is a programme on Channel 4 that relates heavily with this thread!

Ye, I'm considering watching that. It's probably what TS was talking about with his mate.

I'll either learn a little about both sides and why they're protesting, or i'll probably turn into Farnsworth.
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#20
Quote by Arby911
And you would be....oh....what's the word I'm looking for....OH....there it is!

Wrong.

The US most certainly does NOT have any law forbidding 'hate' speech. That's for the other 'progressive, liberal' democracies that are held in such high esteem here...

The way to combat hate speech isn't with censorship, it's with better speech.


There are laws preventing someone from trying to incite violence with speech in the US. Encouragement of violence or a hate crime via anything defined as hate speech is actually forbidden by law.
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#21
Allow both.
If it clearly goes over the line of inciting violence, then give them some in the form of riot police.
#22
Quote by Crazyedd123
Ye, I'm considering watching that. It's probably what TS was talking about with his mate.

I'll either learn a little about both sides and why they're protesting, or i'll probably turn into Farnsworth.
*cough* TS here.

I didn't realise it was to be fair. Turn it on. It's interesting.
#23
Quote by kaptkegan
There are laws preventing someone from trying to incite violence with speech in the US. Encouragement of violence or a hate crime via anything defined as hate speech is actually forbidden by law.


Let's not conflate hate speech with inciting violence, two very different things.

It's perfectly legal to say "I hate XXXXXX, and they are scumbags, useless, shouldn't be allowed to exist etc etc..." (Think Fred Phelps, WBC etc...)

But if you add "and we should go and kill them all, starting right now!" on the end, it's not.
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#24
Inciting hatred is not a valid reason to remove freedom of speech. Legally it is quite clear (in Canada at least), but that itself is not a justification. Freedom of expression shouldn't magically evaporate when one disagrees with the content of what is being expressed. Doesn't that defeat the purpose?

I would like to think that I don't support unjustified oppression. I quite likely rather adamantly disagree with the content that the state/society is trying to censor, but I consider the act of robbing people the ability to state, discuss, and express their opinion much more vile. The whole point is to protect the minority from the majority and to protect individuals and groups from the state. Laws against inciting hatred and other methods of circumventing this "fundamental right" clearly compromise this. Even if you agree with the principle of being able to stop the incitement of hatred, I sincerely hope you disagree with the venomous logic that it used to justify it, especially in a legal sense. It could quite easily be applied in far more terrifying manners while staying just as valid in a legal sense.
#26
I was gonna inb4 that Chomsky quote, Zoot.

I think putting restrictions on freedom of speech is acceptable in some circumstances.
#28
I'm undecided with freedom of speech. On one hand, if you have restrictions on free speech, there can be very nebulous gray areas which can really suck, yet at the same time if you allow everything like WBC.....Well, there's a quote that I'll leave it with which is "If you open your mind too much your brain will fall out."
#29
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And if anyone can show me one example in the history of the world of a single
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And if anyone can show me one example in the history of the world of a single
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And if anyone can show me just one example in the history of the world of a single
Spiritual or religious person who has been able to prove either logically or empirically the existence of a higher power that has any consciousness or interest in the human race or ability to punish or reward humans for there moral choices or that there is any reason - other than fear - to believe in any version of an afterlife

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#30
Quote by PaulyVengeance
If anyone can show me one example in the history of the world of a single
Psychic who has been able to prove under reasonable experimental conditions that they are able to read minds

And if anyone can show me one example in the history of the world of a single
Astrologer who has been able to prove under reasonable experimental conditions that they can predict events by interpreting celestial signs

And if anyone can show me one example in the history of the world of a single
Homeopathic Practitioner who has been able to prove under reasonable experimental conditions that solutions made of infinitely tiny particles of good stuff dissolved repeatedly into relatively huge quantities of water has a consistently higher medicinal value than a similarly administered placebo

And if anyone can show me just one example in the history of the world of a single
Spiritual or religious person who has been able to prove either logically or empirically the existence of a higher power that has any consciousness or interest in the human race or ability to punish or reward humans for there moral choices or that there is any reason - other than fear - to believe in any version of an afterlife

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#31
They have the right to protest, but that doesn't mean I agree with them.

One thing that bugs the shit out of me is extremist Muslim protest that are blindly against anything western.

Note that I said, extremist.
#32
everyone has a right to protest, including cunts
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#33
Quote by due 07
I was gonna inb4 that Chomsky quote, Zoot.

I think putting restrictions on freedom of speech is acceptable in some circumstances.

I think it should be stopped when it becomes harrasment to individuals or a group or something, you couldn't follow someone around all day legally and insult them for instance and i wouldn't ever say that should be allowed to happen.
#34
I'd rather let everyone voice their opinion and then let them face the consequences than censoring either side because someone deems a certain opinion "wrong" or "immoral".

If someone's going to badmouth another group or ethnicity they'd have to be up for the consequences. But in general I really dislike censoring or not allowing people to voice a certain opinion. Unless it's obvious them voicing their opinion is only them trying to annoy and provoke for the saking of provoking.

If there's a reason to it, let it be heard and let people raise their voice against it, as long as it's a legit cause behind the "badmouthing" or whatever it might be. If it's obvious made-up-drivel of another ethnicity being bad because they are of a certain ethnicity well, then there's obvious very little reason to even take the claim seriously in any way.

If it's obvious harassment and little or no justification behind the claims it should be deemed as drivel and thrash.

I might be against someone's opinion but if they are not allowed to voice theirs someone will claim my opinion "illegal" or whatever and we'll dig our own graves of censorship and "crimethought".

And if I disagree with an opinion I and everyone else are fully capable of replying with arguments instead of censoring it.
In general I find people who their own violent behaviour with them being provoked just as, if not worse than someone provoking. Every group of people in society will, sadly enough, be in the scope of someone's hate. To respond with an even more immature behaviour is just even more pathetic.

Who's going to claim the moral high ground and claim that their own opinion of what's right and wrong or moral and immoral is the correct way? Who's the one in charge for deeming certain opinions "censorworthy" and other opinions not?

It's a lot more constructive to actually allow a discussion to take place, if there's a serious one to expect that is.
Dismissing and censoring "extreme" opinions will just create an even wide gap between these groups and the society as a whole, I'd rather see people take the debate when it's relevant and there's legit claims and arguments to take in account for.
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Last edited by JohnnyGenzale at Feb 27, 2012,
#35
reminds of me something i saw today

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H1ho8tunttg&list=FLtNDtBBfb19YsK7JbWH5UaA&index=1&feature=plpp_video

The problem with censoring "hate speech" is that the line between what is considered hateful and what isn't is too blurry. If people have the right to be offended then people should have the right to offend.

The marketplace of ideas can only flourish without censorship. If we start having the authorities picking and choosing what ideas are "safe or correct", then you can say goodbye to any kind of individual thought.
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#36
Quote by Zoot Allures
I think it should be stopped when it becomes harrasment to individuals or a group or something, you couldn't follow someone around all day legally and insult them for instance and i wouldn't ever say that should be allowed to happen.


Im agreeing with Zoot... so far 0.o


People should have the freedom to openly protest in a nonviolent manner without harassing others, inciting violence, breaking other laws or be in fear of prosecution.

That being said I believe the Westboro Baptist Church protests are more then protests but attempts to incite violence, hatred and harrassment on other people for their own life choices. I don't support their views but that's not the reason I condemn them, I condemn them because the manner in which they present their views.
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#37
Quote by Zoot Allures
I think it should be stopped when it becomes harrasment to individuals or a group or something, you couldn't follow someone around all day legally and insult them for instance and i wouldn't ever say that should be allowed to happen.

Pretty much ya. I'd also extend that to explicit incitement to violence and things like falsely yelling "bomb!" on an airplane for the lulz.
#40
It's the job of the government to protect it's citizens rights, not take them away. End of story. That and national defense are the only functions a government should have.
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