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  1. #11
    LL P. Stewie Beorn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wheelchairdoug View Post
    So you are, in essence, arguing that a proper and free society not only ought to allow such things in order to maintain free speech (which I am inclined to agree with), but that said free speech takes precedence over others' need to feel that they have a safe and decent place to live, as well as the community's ability to regulate what it considers acceptable behavior within its' boundaries?
    Yes to the former and no to the latter. I'm a localist and am content to allow individual communities to have greater control over things like free speech to create the type of community they want and to be free of sustained offensive behavior. So my issue here is that this will be used to legitimize Canada's nationalized hate speech laws which I believe has a chilling effect on free speech across the country and to some extent ends up being thought policing. There's a difference between writing a nasty note and being hauled to the town court and forced to pay a fine and do community service for disrupting the peace (continued notes or actions against the family would be harassment and warrant much harsher punishment) and being hauled off before a human rights tribunal to face possible imprisonment. I mean somebody could take the note to be advocating genocide against disabled people which carries with it a maximum 5 year sentence.

    I also think people should consider that the state isn't the only answer to societal ills. This woman is rightly receiving almost universal Condemnation from the Internet. If she is found out the community could always shun and shame her until she asks for forgiveness or at least stps being a nuisance. Of course the family could always pull a Jesus juke and have Max help deliver some home baked cookies to her.
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  2. #12
    Paranoid Android Video's Avatar
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    The worst part to me is the paragraph insisting that the kid has no place in the world: no employer to hire him, no woman to love him, no one who could tolerate hearing him. That's a frightening world you believe in, honey: where a person can be born with no inherent value or potential value. Are you sure you want to resign to living in that world? Do you want to have kids/another kid someday? If you do, how would you deal with the possibility that you might have a worthless one, that civility obligates you to do away with? Imagine the probability of yourself having been born to die. Does it give you a chill?

    It's a self-fulfilling prophecy...if the kid is shut out of society, it will be by the people like the letter writer who think he will.

    Ick.
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  3. #13
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wheelchairdoug View Post
    So you are, in essence, arguing that a proper and free society not only ought to allow such things in order to maintain free speech (which I am inclined to agree with), but that said free speech takes precedence over others' need to feel that they have a safe and decent place to live, as well as the community's ability to regulate what it considers acceptable behavior within its' boundaries?
    I agree with @Beorn. At least in the U.S., we protect the rights of groups like Neo-Nazis and the KKK to demonstrate and voice their hatred, as long as they remain nonviolent and do not incite anyone to violence. Had the letter in question contained a threat on the autistic child's life, or his family, or their property, it would have crossed this boundary and been a matter for the police. Of course, should anything happen to that family, the person who wrote the letter would be a reasonable suspect. Condemnation from neighbors and others may well result in stiffer consequences than the law would permit in any case.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

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