Dangerous Speech?

ibookg409

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I was thinking about this on the drive in to work this morning, and in light of the shooting in Alexandria today where GOP members were specifically targeted I decided to make a thread. Is this type of speech by our leaders, Dem or Repub, dangerous? Can it lead to violence?
 

Populism

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I was thinking about this on the drive in to work this morning, and in light of the shooting in Alexandria today where GOP members were specifically targeted I decided to make a thread. Is this type of speech by our leaders, Dem or Repub, dangerous? Can it lead to violence?
The moment you posted this thread I was thinking about the same issue. Couple of incongruent thoughts, in no particular order:

Heckler's Veto - that's a phrase I learned recently from the NPR show 1A. The idea of a Heckler's Veto is that the threat of violence is enough to veto an event. Concept might apply to Anne Coulter's cancelled gig, although in the end I think it was her that cancelled it. But the question - at least in theory - is whether you think an event should be cancelled because of a "heckler's" threat of violence. Do they win if you cancel? Is it your ass if you don't cancel and violence occurs?

Hate Speech/Threat of Violence - I believe hate speech is allowed under the first amendment, but threats of violence aren't. I guess I agree with both of those ideals. But it sounds a lot easier than it is. The Kathy Gifford decapitated head. Where was that on the spectrum? If you ask ten people you'll no doubt get ten answers. The mockumentary Death of a President about the assassination of Bush - satire? hate speech? threat of violence? Who knows.

But as to your question - not to derail it, but I think this may be what you are getting at. If there are enough non-specific overtures of hate towards Obama and then there's an assassination attempt, does hindsight tell us that the otherwise protected speech were stepping stones towards an assassination attempt and, again in hindsight, and applying forwards, should be limited?

Interesting stuff.
 

LizKat

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There are some standards on what "incitement" means regarding protected speech.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brandenburg_v._Ohio


Brandenburg v. Ohio, 395 U.S. 444 (1969), was a landmark United States Supreme Court case based on the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Court held that government cannot punish inflammatory speech unless that speech is "directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action." Specifically, it struck down Ohio's criminal syndicalism statute, because that statute broadly prohibited the mere advocacy of violence.
 
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ibookg409

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Words are so powerful, I have serious doubts about 1A.
Hitler did not rise to power because he was inarticulate.
It's only post #8 and Hitler already appears. Ugh. Really?

The 1st Amendment was written to protect offensive speech. But just like a properly owned and registered firearm it needs to be handled responsibly.
 

Bug-Creator

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Huh ?

All she does is pointing out that Trump does not stand for the same values she thinks are important and then goes on by calling for him to be removed from office in the way laid down by your constitution.

May or may not agree but pretty tame compared to the rhetoric used by Trump both during before or after his campaign.
 

LizKat

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So if the divisive speech keeps up and keeps getting worse won't it edge towards inspiring violence, either intentionally or unintentionally?
Take it to the Supreme Court. Many a rightie and leftie have gone there.

I thought Pat Buchanan's 1992 speech at the GOP convention was beyond the pale but it's not like he said let's get guns and take back the country. otoh look at the country now, half right, half left, either side could say "See, halfway there already!" and either praise or castigate Buchanan for his "dangerous" ideas tossed out there 25 years ago this summer.
 

ibookg409

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The moment you posted this thread I was thinking about the same issue. Couple of incongruent thoughts, in no particular order:

Heckler's Veto - that's a phrase I learned recently from the NPR show 1A. The idea of a Heckler's Veto is that the threat of violence is enough to veto an event. Concept might apply to Anne Coulter's cancelled gig, although in the end I think it was her that cancelled it. But the question - at least in theory - is whether you think an event should be cancelled because of a "heckler's" threat of violence. Do they win if you cancel? Is it your ass if you don't cancel and violence occurs?

Hate Speech/Threat of Violence - I believe hate speech is allowed under the first amendment, but threats of violence aren't. I guess I agree with both of those ideals. But it sounds a lot easier than it is. The Kathy Gifford decapitated head. Where was that on the spectrum? If you ask ten people you'll no doubt get ten answers. The mockumentary Death of a President about the assassination of Bush - satire? hate speech? threat of violence? Who knows.

But as to your question - not to derail it, but I think this may be what you are getting at. If there are enough non-specific overtures of hate towards Obama and then there's an assassination attempt, does hindsight tell us that the otherwise protected speech were stepping stones towards an assassination attempt and, again in hindsight, and applying forwards, should be limited?

Interesting stuff.
It's a tough question, especially with Trump in office. The Dems HATE him and the main stream media HATES him. The MSM do give extra coverage to those who attack Trump or speak against him. I think the MSM gives a false sense of validity to those who speak so harshly against Trump and the GOP.
 

jpietrzak8

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It's a tough question, especially with Trump in office. The Dems HATE him and the main stream media HATES him. The MSM do give extra coverage to those who attack Trump or speak against him. I think the MSM gives a false sense of validity to those who speak so harshly against Trump and the GOP.
I've gotta ask, why wouldn't Dems and MSM hate Trump? Trump obviously hates them. He spends time almost every day insulting Democrats and the MSM, decrying lies and fake news, saying they should all apologize to him, stating that they have no ideas and can do nothing other than obstruct what he wants to get done. The man treats Democrats and the MSM as the enemy. This is not the best way to engender comity.
 
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ibookg409

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Maxine Waters is dangerous for suggesting we impeach the prez?
I think the non-specific nature of her rhetoric may be dangerous to certain people. The same as other right-wing dopes' rhetoric may be dangerous if heard by certain people. "He's not my President. He's not your President". I'm not sure how I feel about it. Whether you like Trump or not he is the President. He is OUR President. You can fight his policies and stances but the claim of "He's not my President" feels wrong when I hear it. Would people feel justified performing violent acts against a person or a group that is usurping the Office?
 

Populism

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It's a tough question, especially with Trump in office. The Dems HATE him and the main stream media HATES him. The MSM do give extra coverage to those who attack Trump or speak against him. I think the MSM gives a false sense of validity to those who speak so harshly against Trump and the GOP.
It goes back and forth, at least for me. I'll use Enron and Worldcom as examples. When they imploded, the politically-charged race was on to pass a bill that will prevent this from ever happening again! Hence we got Sarbanes Oxley, which would have been patently ineffective to prevent what had happened had it been in place before those collapses and had the extra benefit of decimating start-ups.

Same with PATRIOT Act - knee-jerk, inappropriate reaction to 911.

What's my point? I don't like it when laws are passed in hindsight, emotionally.

That doesn't mean that all these speech patterns aren't leading to violence. Maybe there are. Maybe they should be curtailed. I just like it when people tread deliberately and calmly, as opposed to emotionally.

Good thread.
 

ibookg409

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I've gotta ask, why wouldn't Dems and MSM hate Trump? Trump obviously hates them. He spends time almost every day insulting Democrats and the MSM, decrying lies and fake news, saying they should all apologize to him, stating that they have no ideas and can do nothing other than obstruct what he wants to get done. The man treats Democrats and the MSM as the enemy. This is not the best way to engender comity.
I think the Dems and MSM made themselves the enemy of Trump first.
[doublepost=1497450441][/doublepost]
It goes back and forth, at least for me. I'll use Enron and Worldcom as examples. When they imploded, the politically-charged race was on to pass a bill that will prevent this from ever happening again! Hence we got Sarbanes Oxley, which would have been patently ineffective to prevent what had happened had it been in place before those collapses and had the extra benefit of decimating start-ups.

Same with PATRIOT Act - knee-jerk, inappropriate reaction to 911.

What's my point? I don't like it when laws are passed in hindsight, emotionally.

That doesn't mean that all these speech patterns aren't leading to violence. Maybe there are. Maybe they should be curtailed. I just like it when people tread deliberately and calmly, as opposed to emotionally.

Good thread.
I completely agree, and I am not saying that GOP is innocent of the same type of actions. I just happen to feel that the DEMS are the larger offender at this time.
 
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jpietrzak8

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I think the non-specific nature of her rhetoric may be dangerous to certain people. The same as other right-wing dopes' rhetoric may be dangerous if heard by certain people. "He's not my President. He's not your President". I'm not sure how I feel about it. Whether you like Trump or not he is the President. He is OUR President. You can fight his policies and stances but the claim of "He's not my President" feels wrong when I hear it. Would people feel justified performing violent acts against a person or a group that is usurping the Office?
This country has once before split itself in half and started a civil war because of the man elected President. I personally believe it is evil to appeal to violence as a form of political advocacy (which is probably why I disagree with the premise of the second amendment), but I'm not blind to the fact that it does happen, and that it has happened in the past.

Trump is not in the least trying to pour oil on troubled waters. Rather, he continues to divide, to insult, to hold his extremely partisan rallies. He's turned the bully pulpit into a shock jock show.

The more that Trump acts, I'm afraid the more that he's going to create an equal and opposite reaction...
[doublepost=1497450949][/doublepost]
I think the Dems and MSM made themselves the enemy of Trump first.
Really? I mean, Trump came out with that disgusting birther claim almost a decade ago, now. And he's welded himself to the alt-right a long, long time ago. I think Trump started treating Dems and MSM as enemy before they really even cared about him...
 

LizKat

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I think the non-specific nature of her rhetoric may be dangerous to certain people. The same as other right-wing dopes' rhetoric may be dangerous if heard by certain people. "He's not my President. He's not your President". I'm not sure how I feel about it. Whether you like Trump or not he is the President. He is OUR President. You can fight his policies and stances but the claim of "He's not my President" feels wrong when I hear it. Would people feel justified performing violent acts against a person or a group that is usurping the Office?
Would someone have felt justified in killing Obama after seeing a bumperstick that selectively quoted a line from Psalm 109?

“Let his days be few; and let another take his office.”
Maybe not. On the other hand, the Psalm goes on to offer this:

“Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow.”
So you decide. Would a wannabe assassin have read the whole psalm or was the bumperstick line enough to fire up his imagination of how to lessen Obama's term in office?

What the Court has so far decided about the protections of the First Amendment regarding speech is that the line one may not cross is incitement of imminent violence.

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/2009/1116/biblical-anti-obama-slogan-use-of-psalm-1098-funny-or-sinister
 
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ibookg409

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This country has once before split itself in half and started a civil war because of the man elected President. I personally believe it is evil to appeal to violence as a form of political advocacy (which is probably why I disagree with the premise of the second amendment), but I'm not blind to the fact that it does happen, and that it has happened in the past.

Trump is not in the least trying to pour oil on troubled waters. Rather, he continues to divide, to insult, to hold his extremely partisan rallies. He's turned the bully pulpit into a shock jock show.

The more that Trump acts, I'm afraid the more that he's going to create an equal and opposite reaction...
What has trump really done as President to deserve such hatred? It's a question to which I never really receive a good answer.

I personally believe that if the divisive speech persists and if the blind hatred continues to be fed then we are heading towards a civil war, or at least a very brutal series of riots and large violent altercations. Things will hit a tipping point and speeches like this will be the catalyst.
 
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