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There is a much longer causal chain between "hate speech" and the damage that it causes (i.e. the actual crimes committed) than between yelling fire and the stampede it causes. This makes establishing a causal relationship between hate speech and violence a decidedly dodgy issue.

Or, shorter version: I don't buy your causal chain. You're engaging in a slippery slope fallacy.

And on the subject of "social harmony and the protection of its citizens," one might just as easily argue that a syndicalist agitator promoting strikes and blockades as means to achieve higher wages is disrupting the "social harmony" and that citizens need to be "protected" from him.

Lastly, I notice that you keep conflating offencive speech with hate speech. Do you think that the two are the same? If so, who determines what is offencive?

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue Apr 8th, 2008 at 11:29:19 AM EST
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that's an easy one - if it is directed at a group of people identifiable by their ethnic origin, skin colour, religious affiliation, age, sex, sexual preference, or handicap.

so union busters would only be using hate speech if they were trying to bust up a union of Santa's elves.  ;-)

by zoe on Tue Apr 8th, 2008 at 12:37:39 PM EST
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Union busters are targeting people based on their political affiliation. Are you saying that political affiliation should not be a protected category? If so, expect labour unions to file for church status.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue Apr 8th, 2008 at 01:15:02 PM EST
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