Worldly Talk

Civil discussion and debate on real world events and issues.


Libya consulate attack

   
As the news comes out, this is showing itself to be a terrorist attack. A riot outside the embassy to force the Americans to flee to a safe house for evacuation, and being met at the safe house by machine gun and rocket fire. These people need to be treated like any other terrorist.

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Originally Posted by Lord Ben View Post
If some militant free speech guy murders some Canadians because you suggested free speech isn't as important as he thinks it is should you get tossed in jail for offending him?

Making fun of religion shouldn't be illegal...
That depends entirely on whether or not it's common knowledge that suggesting free speech should be unrestricted will cause people to fly into a murderous rage, and if said anger is know to be widespread when it's roused. I come from a nation that does believes that the public order and peoples ability to live without harassment is more important than the ability of any given yahoo to say whatever stupid, hateful thing that might come into their head. And lo and behold we are significantly less of a police state than even the US is becoming. Restricting free speech does not immediately cause freedom and democracy to wither and die.

To use an example that you might be able to identify with: If I walked into a bar frequented by soldiers and said 'All US Military personnel are baby raping, jackbooted fascists and they should all be thrown in concentration camps and starved to death while listening to 24/7 Avril Lavigne' would the beating I receive be entirely the fault of the soldiers in question? Or to put it another way, it was a group you supported rather than a group that you view as a vague sort of 'enemy' that attacked after being provoked in such a way, would your opinion change any?

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Originally Posted by Powderhorn View Post
As the news comes out, this is showing itself to be a terrorist attack. A riot outside the embassy to force the Americans to flee to a safe house for evacuation, and being met at the safe house by machine gun and rocket fire. These people need to be treated like any other terrorist.
Yes they do. That is not in question. Can we move on to the other part of the argument? I've never stated that the actions of the film makers absolve the actual attackers of anything. But at the same time the fact that they made something hateful and provocative shouldn't be ignored just because of 'free speech'.

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Originally Posted by Savayan View Post
To use an example that you might be able to identify with: If I walked into a bar frequented by soldiers and said 'All US Military personnel are baby raping, jackbooted fascists and they should all be thrown in concentration camps' would the beating I receive be entirely the fault of the soldiers in question?
You are ignorant of the American military. The answer is, simply, yes. They would be charged through civil courts for assault, and, assuming they weren't charged again in military courts, they would still be told they know better, and need to comport themselves better in public.

Not only have I had to endure many such slurs (when foolishly wearing my uniform in a city... once, and never again) I also get the distinct pleasure of watching my country men (less frequently) and other people abroad (more frequently) burn my flag. And I certainly am not allowed to simply beat the snot out of them, much less kill them, because of how offensive they are to me or my kind.

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Originally Posted by Savayan View Post
@Ultima: Except even the US has laws against things like fighting words. And here in Canada and other countries that don't have a fetishistic reverence for free speech, it definitely could fall under the category of hate speech. And given past experience, I think we can safely conclude that ridiculing Mohammad qualifies for both in certain segments of the world. What's the point in supporting bigotry if we know from empirical evidence that it will lead to real physical harm? This sort of thing is the geopolitical equivalent of shouting 'FIRE!' in a crowded theatre.

And to be honest, from what I've read, that's exactly what they're aiming for with this thing. It's intended to stir up violence in the Arab world. Given it's backers, I think that they intended it to happen in Egypt, but I don't think they feel particularly guilty if it's an action that makes their particular hated group look worse.
Yet you haven't seen the video, so you won't know what they intended unless you watch it for yourself. Regardless, I nor other Americans have a "fetish' for free speech. It's a fundamental element of our democracy, and while what freedom of speech is can be tenuous at times, as Ted pointed out, it's still something we, and other nations do uphold. Censoring things because they may be offensive to other bigots is not the way to go. The bigoted idiots who released the video will suffer from having their public image ridiculed. They are already likely pariahs in their communities and if not, are definitely so to the vast majority of people in their nation. Bigots who decide to shed blood because they were offended, should not be tolerated. There have been people beaten in the streets because they simply disagreed with extremists with the same views as the bigots who attacked the embassy, that should never be tolerated, civilized people don't go about maiming and killing because their feelings got hurt.

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Originally Posted by Powderhorn View Post
You are ignorant of the American military. The answer is, simply, yes. They would be charged through civil courts for assault, and, assuming they weren't charged again in military courts, they would still be told they know better, and need to comport themselves better in public.

Not only have I had to endure many such slurs (when foolishly wearing my uniform in a city... once, and never again) I also get the distinct pleasure of watching my country men (less frequently) and other people abroad (more frequently) burn my flag. And I certainly am not allowed to simply beat the snot out of them, much less kill them, because of how offensive they are to me or my kind.
Legally? No they would not be the only ones at fault. It's an established legal fiction in the US and elsewhere that certain words said in certain contexts effectively constitute throwing a punch. The exact nature of what constitutes fighting words is up to the judge in question, but they do exist. The precedent exists to restrict free speech in the US if it will cause an immediate and expected breach of the peace. Whether or not you agree with it, it is on the books and as such could, and in my opinion should, be applied. I have seen the clip in question, and there is no reason to think that the people that made that film expected it to incite anything other than violent outrage when viewed by faithful Muslims. And after the fallout from things like the Mohammad cartoons run by Jyllands-Posten and to a lesser extent the fallout from the Satanic Diaries, we as a society should know this.

Can a video that wasn't intended to be seen by a Muslim audience, but was instead leaked to it be considered fighting words though?

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Originally Posted by ultima22689 View Post
Yet you haven't seen the video, so you won't know what they intended unless you watch it for yourself. Regardless, I nor other Americans have a "fetish' for free speech. It's a fundamental element of our democracy, and while what freedom of speech is can be tenuous at times, as Ted pointed out, it's still something we, and other nations do uphold. Censoring things because they may be offensive to other bigots is not the way to go. The bigoted idiots who released the video will suffer from having their public image ridiculed. They are already likely pariahs in their communities and if not, are definitely so to the vast majority of people in their nation. Bigots who decide to shed blood because they were offended, should not be tolerated. There have been people beaten in the streets because they simply disagreed with extremists with the same views as the bigots who attacked the embassy, that should never be tolerated, civilized people don't go about maiming and killing because their feelings got hurt.
I have seen the video, and trust me there is no way you could interpret how they showed Mohammad as anything less than an direct attack on Islam. I found it offensive, and I'm not even a Muslim.

And again, the people that did the actual attacks should not be tolerated, I wholeheartedly agree. But they are not the only ones to blame. And as I pointed out, I come from a democracy (Canada) that does not put free speech above all other considerations. As I've pointed out several times, even your own legal system recognizes that there are situations where saying something is effectively an attack in the same way that throwing a punch is. That is what these people effectively did here. We as a society know how some segments of the Arab world react to these things. We have no real justification to continue to provoke them like this.

It's a question of control. The military people in that situation have to maintain the discipline not to assault somebody. As soon as they throw the first punch they have assaulted somebody. Yes, breach of the peace is an offense that warrants an arrest. However, escalating it beyond, "You need to leave, or we're going to call the cops" now places the military personnel in danger of facing both civil and military punishment.

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Originally Posted by kenas View Post
Can a video that wasn't intended to be seen by a Muslim audience, but was instead leaked to it be considered fighting words though?
That'd be up to a judge, really. But seeing as it was released onto the internet rather than being kept on a DVD in the back of someone's closet, I'd say they weren't exactly trying to keep it a secret. Remember, not all Muslims, or even most Muslims are monolingual in Arabic. They weren't really trying to hide this, and simply not saying it in their language doesn't automatically absolve them of blame.




 

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