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Hate Speech Legal, But Unnecessary

1363 words - 5 pages

Hate Speech - Legal, but Unnecessary

     While a clear and concise definition remains forthcoming, it is easier to establish what hate speech is not. Hate speech is wrong but legal in the United States of America mostly because we have the freedom of speech. But the First Amendment exists precisely to protect the most offensive and controversial speech from government suppression. In this case, people are allowed to use hate speech and not get arrested or any legal actions against them. The best way to counter obnoxious speech such as this is with more speech. Persuasion, not violence, is the solution to this problem (Jouhari).
     Hate speech has been mistakenly tied with other categories of speech both legal and illegal. One should avoid confusing hate speech with something it is not because other legal implications might come into play. Hate speech is not obscene speech. According to the guidelines of the Federal Communications Committee (FCC) for indecent speech, which define indecent speech as,
"limited to language or material that depicts or describes, in terms patently offensive as much by the contemporary community standards for the broadcast means, sexual activities or organs," then hate speech is not indecent speech either (Pullma). Indecent speech should also be kept apart from the category of hate speech, which involves victimization.

     Hate speech is offensive language towards a particular group, race, gender, or religion. These include the insulting words by which their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace. It has been well observed that such utterances are no essential part of any exposition of ideas, and are of such slight social value as a step to truth that any benefit that may be derived from them is clearly outweighed by the social interest in order and morality (Pullma).
     There is no choice but to continue tolerating intolerance, until the Constitution itself would be amended, which is an event unlikely to occur. In the meantime, individual cases and court opinions add more problems to the already growing problem called the constitutionality of hate speech. Hate speech on the Internet is one of those problems, unique, but part of the whole picture.

     I am against hate speech, but all people no matter their beliefs are entitled to freedom of speech like the next person, but this does not mean that I endorse the views they express. Its just that people should be able to be free of material on the Internet that insults them. The Internet is way most of the hate speech material is presented to the world. Like for example, such things as the beliefs the nazis that of Jews, Blacks, Hispanics, etc.

     Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had an interesting statement in his Letter from Birmingham Jail that pertains to...

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