CL Rejected Writings: Free to Hate: Sorry, I am free to hate you if I want.
“Free Speech does NOT include Hate Speech”, says some stupid blurb from some stupid online publication that I see on one of my stupid friend’s Facebook page over and over again over the past year or so. Sorry pal, but it most absolutely does. What is free speech other than being free to express ideas that may not be the most popular at the time? These days “Hate Speech” is considered things that are just uncouth or mean-spirited. If “Hate Speech” is off the table, what are you free to talk about- the right to say that Evanescence is a good band?
If anything, when people truly speak their mind on things you can really gauge if you want to interact with that person. You figure out who someone is pretty quick if you talk to someone about a controversial talking point. Too often, people throw out the “-phobic” or “-ist” term, when in reality that person may just be a giant dick. We live in this world together and knowing your neighbors is key when figuring out who you’re going to invite over for your Seder dinner.
My grandmother wasn’t a bigot, but she used to call my cousins wife an “Oriental” at family gatherings with referencing her. Other than making me laugh out loud because of the awkwardness, there wasn’t an ounce of any sort of slight behind it-- it’s just a term she grew up hearing and language sticks. Words mean things. In Granny’s mind she was an Oriental because she came from the Orient, a now outdated term for a region of the world. If someone overheard her say that in a Publix though, she would be wrung though; maybe some support for her termination from her job or her social media accounts to be deleted. Luckily for her, she was an old, retired, widower who thought MySpace was called “YourSpace” when talking about my MySpace page-- along with social media being a giant waste of time to boot.
Listening for buzz words has become an easy way to win an argument. If someone uses a term that could be potentially controversial, it automatically makes the rest of the argument invalid and the discussion ends. The people who preach tolerance and love are often the ones who use this premise to “win” and the irony could stop a bullet fired out of Donald Trump’s own mouth.
Look, we aren’t going to always agree, but few things are black and white (pretty much other than black and white). Political Correctness is a cancer that dulls your ability to express and formulate ideas. In many cases, Hate-Facts can subdue truth because they’re not a nice reality and people “can’t even”. Don’t let your emotions get the better of you, let’s chat-- stop crying, and we might learn something from each other. However, this is just my opinion and yes; you are free to hate me for it.