copy pasta from another site. + A new bill being supported by the Obama Administration and being sponsored by at least 11 senators of all stripes is being introduced that will threaten news aggregation, truth blogs, documentary filmmakers, political websites, and any website that uses portions or snippets from mainstream media websites or any portion of any copyrighted content.
The US government is to give up control of the administration of the internet, handing over responsibility for the IP numbering network and domain name system (DNS) to the global community.
Since 1998, under a contract with the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), DNS has been handled by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN), a non-profit corporation created for the purpose.
But when its current contract expires in September 2015, it won’t be renewed. In the meantime, an alternative will be worked out.
“The timing is right to start the transition process,” says assistant secretary of commerce for communications and information Lawrence E Strickling. “We look forward to ICANN convening stakeholders across the global internet community to craft an appropriate transition plan.”
ICANN will work with organizations including the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the Internet Architecture Board (IAB), the Internet Society (ISOC), the Regional Internet Registries (RIRs), top level domain name operators, VeriSign and others to develop new proposals. The first meeting on the subject will take place in Singapore later this month.
The intention is to maintain the security, stability, and resiliency of the internet – along with its openness. The Commerce Department says it won’t accept a proposal that simply allows another government or group of governments to take over the role of the NTIA.
The responsibilities to be farmed out will include the administration of changes to the DNS’s authoritative root zone file – the database containing the lists of names and addresses of all top-level domains – as well as managing the unique identifiers registries for domain names, IP addresses, and protocol parameters.
The move has been a long time coming. Right back in 1998, the Commerce Department declared that it was “committed to a transition that will allow the private sector to take leadership for DNS management.”
However, there have been increased calls for changes in the light of Edward Snowden’s revelations about NSA spying. Critics have complained that the present system gives the US too much influence, and have called for greater input from the UN and International Telecommunication Union (ITU).
“Even though ICANN will continue to perform these vital technical functions, the US has long envisioned the day when stewardship over them would be transitioned to the global community,” says Dr Stephen D Crocker, ICANN’s board chair.
“In other words, we have all long known the destination. Now it is up to our global stakeholder community to determine the best route to get us there.”
The move has been broadly welcomed by rights groups. “This is a very constructive step, definitely in the right direction, and a unique opportunity to make progress in the evolution of the internet governance ecosystem,” says Anriette Esterhuysen, executive director of the Association for ProgressivePGR +3.01% Communications (APC). “This is particularly important for stakeholders from developing countries.”
But some people are less happy.
“Every American should worry about Obama giving up control of the internet to an undefined group. This is very, very dangerous,” tweeted former speaker of the house Newt Gingrich.
“What is the global internet community that Obama wants to turn the internet over to? This risks foreign dictatorships defining the internet.”
But this is just scare-mongering, says the Internet Governance Project (IGP), an alliance of academics that has been campaigning for changes to internet governance since 2005, in a statement.
“Far from ‘giving up’ something or ‘losing control’, the US is sure to find that its policy has gained strength. We have just made it a lot harder for opponents of a free and open internet to pretend that what they are really against is an internet dominated by one hegemonic state,” it says.
“We have also made it harder for anyone to complain that multis take holder governance is just a fig leaf for US pre-eminence.”
The IGP does, though, have its own concerns, centered around the importance of separating root zone management functions from the policy making functions – which have highly political implications. It’s worried that ICANN is managing the transition process itself.
“Everyone needs to understand that ICANN as an organization has a very strong interest in gaining control of both the technical-operational and the policy making functions. Controlling both makes ICANN a far more powerful, and far less accountable, entity,” it warns.
“Like all organizations, ICANN wants to achieve autonomy and strengthen itself. Countervailing forces in the internet community will be needed to keep it in check.”
No Free Speech For Rodeo Clown Banned From State Fair For Life In 2013 + It is an American tradition as old as America herself. From newsprint to public speech we, as Americans, have been making fun of our politicians and their positions. Apparently this free speech does not apply to rodeo clowns. The Missouri State Fair imposed a lifetime ban on the rodeo clown whose depiction of Obama getting charged by a bull was widely criticized by Democratic and Republican officials alike.
The rodeo clown won’t be allowed to participate or perform at the fair again. Fair officials say they’re also reviewing whether to take any action against the Missouri Rodeo Cowboy Association, the contractor responsible for Saturday’s event. The Missouri State Fair is forcing all clowns to undergo sensitivity training. “The announcer wanted to know if anyone would like to see Obama run down by a bull,” a posting of the account on Facebook said. “The crowd went wild. He asked it again and again, louder each time, whipping the audience into a lather.”
Another clown then apparently joined the performance.
“One of the clowns ran up and started bobbling the lips on the mask and the people went crazy,” the posting said. “Finally a bull came close enough to him that he had to move so he jumped up and ran away to the delight of the onlookers hooting and hollering from the stands.”
Mark Ficken had, who obtained legal counsel in hopes of clearing his name, is the rodeo association president and was the rodeo announcer. His attorney, Albert S. Watkins, said Monday that the clown was acting unscripted. He said it was the clown, wearing a microphone, who made comments riling up the crowd. Ficken’s only comment during the routine was, “Watch out for that bull, Obama!”
Mark Ficken is also the superintendent of the Boonville R-1 School District. Ficken became president of the Missouri Cowboy Rodeo Association Saturday morning, a post he resigned after just two days Monday. These types of acts are common at rodeos across the nation. Rodeo clowns have been spoofing politicians and many others as long as there have been rodeo clowns. Fair organizers released a statement, which did not contest the details reported on social media. “The performance by one of the rodeo clowns at Saturday’s event was inappropriate and disrespectful, and does not reflect the opinions or standards of the Missouri State Fair,” the statement read. “We strive to be a family friendly event and regret that Saturday’s rodeo badly missed that mark. ”Condemnation came from both sides of the aisle. In a statement, Democratic U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill called it shameful and unacceptable. She noted that the fair receives taxpayer dollars and is supposed to be a place to celebrate the state.
“But the young Missourians who witnessed this stunt learned exactly the wrong lesson about political discourse — that somehow it’s ever acceptable to, in a public event, disrespect, taunt and joke about harming the president of our great nation,” McCaskill said in the statement.
Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon’s press secretary, Scott Holste, said in a statement, “The governor agrees that the performance was disrespectful and offensive, and does not reflect the values of Missourians or the State Fair.”
Republican Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder weighed in in a series of Twitter posts. Kinder said he loved the fair and planned to attend but said the clown’s performance reflected poorly on the state.
“I condemn the actions disrespectful to (the president of the United States) the other night. We are better than this.”
The event organizer, the Missouri Rodeo Cowboy Association, apologized on its website, calling the act “inappropriate.”
“We are taking measures by training and educating our contract acts to prevent anything like this from ever happening again,” the statement said.
Apparently, we no longer have the freedom of speech we once did. It is now frowned upon to challenge our elected officials as if they are of greater stature than us. Is President Obama now a king that we cannot spoof him? Is he a religious figure that we cannot question him? What has happened to the America I knew, where we could imitate Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan and even Jimmy Carter? As I say again and again, when we move away from the Lord, we loose our freedom.
By the way…
In 1994, Douglas A. Campbell, a writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer chronicled a rodeo clown even featuring George H.W. Bush.
From the report: The big white gate flew open. The bull came out bucking. The rider flopped from side to side and the bullfighters held back, letting the bull make his moves until the rider dropped off. Licciardello crouched in a heavily padded barrel, a human target should the bull decide to charge. Hawkins waited near the barrel, holding his big inner tube. A dummy with a George Bush mask stood beside the clown, propped up by a broomstick. … T.J. Hawkins rolled out the big inner tube, and the bull lowered his head, shot forward and launched into the tube, sending it bounding down the center of the arena. The crowd cheered. Then the bull saw the George Bush dummy. He tore into it, sending the rubber mask flying halfway across the sand as he turned toward the fence, sending cowboys scrambling up the fence rails, hooking one with his horn and tossing him off the fence.
This decision was more or less finalized when the Obama administration Department of Commerce decided not to renew the contract whereby ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers), a non-profit corporation created to basically administer the internet, controls the assignment of domain names for websites and the like. As such, ICANN’s control will effectively end in September 2015, and the “world community” will become responsible for governing the internet through “world institutions” via the UN.
Anyone who cannot see what an incredibly dangerous assault on free speech this is, not just in the United States but also worldwide, is simply not paying attention.
As noted in the article,“The responsibilities to be farmed out will include the administration of changes to the DNS’s authoritative root zone file—the database containing the lists of names and addresses of all top-level domains—as well as managing the unique identifiers registries for domain names, IP addresses, and protocol parameters.”
This, essentially, is the nuts and bolts of the internet. These international bodies will have control over who gets (and gets to keep) their domain names and IP addresses among other things, which are essential to having and maintaining a presence on the world wide web. Newt Gingrich’s comment about this will surely end up being sure to be correct,
“Every American should worry about Obama giving up control of the internet to an undefined group. This is very, very dangerous…What is the global internet community that Obama wants to turn the internet over to? This risks foreign dictatorships defining the internet.”
He does have a point, after all. Remember, this is the same “world community” that routinely puts incorrigible human rights abusers like Iran, Saudi Arabia, Cuba, China, and Venezuela onto the UN Human Rights Council. Yet, there are some in the “academic community” who are blinkered enough to think that potentially handing control of internet access over to a body in which China, Russia, and even Zimbabwe will have the same say as the United States is a good thing,“But this is just scare-mongering, says the Internet Governance Project (IGP), an alliance of academics that has been campaigning for changes to internet governance since 2005, in a statement.
“‘Far from “giving up” something or “losing control”, the US is sure to find that its policy has gained strength. We have just made it a lot harder for opponents of a free and open internet to pretend that what they are really against is an internet dominated by one hegemonic state,’ it says.
“‘We have also made it harder for anyone to complain that multistakeholder governance is just a fig leaf for US pre-eminence.’”
Uh huh. This argument is, in essence, yet another display of the same ridiculous “soft power” mindset that drives so much of Obama’s foreign policy (and we can see how well that’s worked). By seeing our example, the “world community” will surely “evolve” to maintain American-style interests in free and open speech on the internet, and therefore would never even think of using their input to, say, ban speech that offends Islam or to prohibit “Free Tibet” or pro-Ukrainian websites from being able to get access.
It’s all hogwash.Once the “wild, wild West” of internet freedom of speech becomes subject to the input of unelected UN bureaucrats…
Once the “wild, wild West” of internet freedom of speech becomes subject to the input of unelected UN bureaucrats from that large, large part of the world that doesn’t hold freedom of speech to be a basic civilizational ideal, we can expect to find the internet becoming significantly less open. And let’s face it, most of the countries in the world do not believe in freedom of speech. Indeed, a large functional majority of them do not. The Islamic world alone comprises 57 of the 193 members states of the United Nations. What do you do when they get together with China and its vassals, Russia and its lackeys, and the dictatorships of Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa to agree to ban criticism of Islam, the advocacy of decentralization and liberty, criticism of their regimes, and anything else that authoritarian regimes find disagreeable? Simply refuse to grant domains to “objectionable” groups and ideas, and you can strangle their expression in the cradle.
There’s a reason that control of the internet should remain firmly and solely in American (and by extension, Western) hands, regardless of whether tin pot Third World dictatorships view this as “hegemonic” or not—and that is because we are pretty much the only ones in the world who can be trusted to actually keep the internet free. We invented it, after all, and we’ve kept it a safe haven for free speech for around two decades so far.
So why give up control without a fight? Why finally make the move to let ICANN’s contract expire?
Well, it’s because Obama and his fellow leftists in American government and society HATE freedom of speech, as I observed in my previous article. This is the same President who early in his first term wanted a “kill switch” for the internet.
But, Obama and the rest of his liberal pals know that they could not get away with simply censoring the internet themselves. Not only would that be blatant enough that it wouldn’t pass constitutional muster with any but the most partisan left-wing judges, but the uproar it would create would make the opposition to ObamaCare that is about to cost the Democrats the Senate look like a gentle breeze.
So how do you get around the opposition to a policy that you want to enact, but don’t have the domestic support to be able to do? You get “the international community” to do it for you. You hand over the keys to the internet to the dictators and the communists out there in the UN, and let them do what comes naturally.
After all, it’s not like Obama and the American Left aren’t on the same side of most of the relevant issues as the dictators, theocrats, and thugs who run most of the rest of the world. They all hate people who criticize Islam. They all hate the right to keep and bear arms. They all hate Christianity. They all hate individual liberty and personal sovereignty. They all hate capitalism. Many of them can even be convinced to support the gay agenda and punish opposition to it, so long as they’re getting everything else they want. Authoritarians are nothing if not pragmatic, after all.
And even if we wanted to be charitable and suppose that Obama and the Left don’t really have this as their goal, this is still going to be the practical effect of this move. But I’m not feeling very charitable today.
If conservative Republicans in Congress could be convinced to actually do something about this, we might have a chance of preserving a free internet. Barring that, however, it may be time to think about planning for the inevitable loss of internet speech freedom. We built the internet once, we can do it again—the construction of a parallel internet alongside the “official” one might be technically demanding, but would benefit world freedom greatly. Also, it may be time for liberty lovers and conservatives to start “stockpiling” free speech by saving to disk websites, pages, articles, online books, and whatever else is out there that promotes liberty and traditional values. That way, these works will be preserved for the day when freedom once again comes to the internet. Either way, we have to be prepared for the possibility that the world wide web will become nothing more than the official propaganda arms of freedom haters worldwide.
NBC BANS ANN COULTER FOR LIFE* BANNED FOR LIFE? HOW FASCIST...I MEAN PROGRESSIVE OF THEM. DO YOU REALLY BELIEVE IN FREE SPEECH FOR ALL?
NBC BANS COULTER FOR LIFE; CUT FROM 'TODAY' SHOW OVER BOOK'S CLAIMS, NO MORE CABLE Mon Jan 05 2009 17:50:57 ET
The nation's top selling conservative author has been banned from appearing on NBC, insiders tell the DRUDGE REPORT.
Banned for life!
"We are just not going to have her on any more, it's over," a top network source explains.
NBC's TODAY show abruptly cut Ann Coulter from its planned Tuesday broadcast, claiming the schedule was overbooked.
But executives at NBC TODAY replaced Coulter with showbiz reporter Perez Hilton, who recently offered $1,000 to anyone who would throw a pie at Ann Coulter. Hilton is also launching a new book this week, RED CARPET SUICIDE.
Coulter was set to unveil her new book, GUILTY.
But one network insider claims it was the book's theme -- a brutal examination of liberal bias in the new era -- that got executives to dis-invite the controversialist.
"We are just not interested in anyone so highly critical of President-elect Obama, right now," a TODAY insider reveals. "It's such a downer. It's just not the time, and it's not what our audience wants, either."
For the book, Coulter reportedly received the most-lucrative advance ever paid to a conservative author.
The TODAY show eagerly invited the author months ago, for her first network interview on GUILTY.
The exclusive was to air during the show's 7 AM hour. The cut came Monday afternoon.
Canadian Lifetime Speech Ban Lifted + A couple of years back, the Rev. Stephen Boissoin committed the crime of writing a letter to a local newspaper objecting to various aspects of “the homosexual agenda.” The Alberta “Human Rights” Tribunal convicted him of this crime and imposed a lifetime speech ban preventing him, in essence, from saying anything about homosexuality in public or private ever again anywhere for the rest of his life.
The Court of Queen’s Bench in Alberta has now struck down this outrageous decision. Mr. Justice Wilson’s ruling could not be plainer. He rejects all the Tribunal’s punishments as “illegal,” not least the speech ban:The direction to cease and desist the publishing of “disparaging remarks about gays and homosexuals’ is beyond the power of the Panel. “Disparaging remarks”were not defined by the Panel. But clearly, “disparaging remarks” are remarks much less serious than hateful and contemptuous remarks and are quite lawful to make. They are beyond the power of the Act to regulate and the power of the Province to restrain.
Quite so. And how sad that an appeals court should have to point out something so obvious. The Reverend Boissoin has won a belated and costly victory over the ideological control-freaks of the Canadian thought police. On the broader questions, Mr. Justice Wilson is more reserved, pointing out correctly that these are matters for the legislature. Unfortunately, Canada’s political class are in no hurry to take it up. Nonetheless, the Court of Queen’s Bench decision (not to mention its reference to yours truly) would have been less likely before the campaign to restore freedom of speech up north. The cravenness of the politicians is depressing, but Ezra and I and a few others have helped to change the climate — and, for the moment, rendered these disgusting laws unenforceable.
As for America, you see in the recent push for “hate crimes” legislation how easily the same temptations apply here.
Two Children Banned for Life From Talking About Fracking + As part of a 2011 settlement (pdf) between a Pennsylvania family and three oil and gas companies involved in drilling in the Marcellus Shale, Chris and Stephanie Hallowich have been prohibited from talking about the case or about gas drilling or fracking — and so have their two children, who were aged 7 and 10 at the time of the lawsuit.
“I guess our position is it does apply to the whole family. We would certainly enforce it,” James Swetz, the attorney representing one of the companies, Range Resources, is quoted as saying at an August 2011 settlement hearing that reporters were not allowed to attend and during which court records were sealed.
The court transcripts have now been released, after the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette filed an Open Records request. The 16-page transcript shows that the prohibition against the children speaking was “discussed at length.”
Legal experts emphasize that the gag order on children is “rare.” “It’s right to react to this as strange and the lawyers involved reflect that when they say they’ve never seen that. My reaction is it’s kind of over the top,” says Jessie Allen, professor of law at the University of Pittsburgh.
The Hallowichs had accused Range Resources, Williams Gas/Laurel Mountain Midstream and MarkWest Energy of not only destroying their 10-acre farm in Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania, but also of seriously endangering their children’s health. Adjacent to their property were four gas wells, gas compressor stations and a waste water pond; these, according to the family, contaminated their water supply and left them with burning eyes, sore throats and headaches.
The gag order on the whole family was a condition of the settlement. The Hallowichs said they agreed to it because they wanted to move to a new home for the sake of their children’s health and safety.
As their attorney, Peter Villari, said according to the court transcript, “in 30 years of practicing law, he had never known a nondisclosure agreement to include minor children.” As another University of Pittsburgh law school professor, Harry Flechtner, comments, as children, the Hallowich’s son and daughter “can’t be bound by such an agreement, a contract, but the wild card is the court approval of the agreement.”
Villari has also questioned whether the children’s First Amendment rights are being affected, if not violated, by such a settlement. The judge in the case, Paul Pozonsky (who has since retired) said that this was ”a law school question, I guess.”
The “fracking gag” placed on the children is anything but an academic question. Their lives, and those of the entire Hallowich family, have been irredeemably affected by the oil and gas companies’ industrial activities. The companies might dispute the influence of fracking and other operations on their health, but the family having to move from their property was certainly a disruption in their lives.
A spokeman for Range Resources, Matt Pitzarella, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that Swetz’s comments are “not something we agree with” and that “we don’t believe the [Hallowich] settlement applies to children.” As Villari says, “I’d appreciate it if they’d put that in writing.”
It goes without saying that the three oil and gas companies must clarify their position about the gag order. Most of all, the two Hallowish children must be released from it. By including the gag order for the family, the companies have given them a whole lot more to talk about.
At this time of year, NBA talk is usually about the Miami Heat and what team it’ll wrestle for the championship trophy. Not this time. The basketball world is consumed with the racist comments an 80-year-old billionaire team owner made to his young, biracial mistress. The comments were surreptitiously taped.
As Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling argued with his girlfriend, he used offensive words in describing minorities — words that landed like a punch to the gut of every black NBA player.
He sounded like Archie Bunker, talking as if black men were nothing more than slaves to be admired from afar, but not to be mingled with publicly.
Mr. Sterling sounded like Big Daddy on a plantation of black workers who need him to survive. “I support them and give them food, and clothes, and cars, and houses. Who gives it to them? Does someone else give it to them?”
It culminated Tuesday when newbie NBA Commissioner Adam Silver dropped a Kryptonite hammer on Mr. Sterling — a lifetime ban from the NBA, barring him from all contact with the Clippers. He topped it off with a $2.5 million fine.
As the dust settles, troubling questions creep in.
Were Mr. Sterling’s views really a surprise to his fellow NBA team owners? He’s been a member of this exclusive club since 1981. He has a history of being accused of bigotry. In 2009, Elgin Baylor, the all-star and former Clippers’ general manager, accused Mr. Sterling of racial and age discrimination. Mr. Baylor lost, but today he must be saying, “I told you so.”
That same year, Mr. Sterling, paid $2.725 million to settle a housing-discrimination lawsuit brought by the Justice Department and, in a third lawsuit, Mr. Sterling ran into trouble for refusing to rent to black, Latinos and Koreans.
But is his punishment — though appropriate — for his nasty words, or a result of his peers’ reluctance to rein him in years ago? Mr. Sterling is not the only team owner who looks bad here, it’s just a matter of degree.
And there is precedent: Marge Schott, owner of the Cincinnati Reds, was suspended twice in the ’90s for praising the Nazi Party.
South Floridians can be proud of Miami Heat players who, led by LeBron James, denounced Mr. Sterling and visibly supported the Clippers. Commend the team for recognizing a pivotal, stand-up-and-be-counted moment on an issue that goes beyond the basketball court.
Egg is on the face of the Los Angeles chapter of the NAACP, which was preparing to honor Mr. Sterling with a second Lifetime Achievement Award. What were they thinking? No doubt Mr. Sterling’s financial donations to the group had something to do with it.
Although Mr. Silver moved swiftly and decisively, the controversy has opened up team owners’ personal conduct to scrutiny. Players rightly say they have to follow rules of conduct off the court. Why not the owners?
Ten years ago, a story based on a secretly taped conversation between a powerful rich man and his young mistress would not have seen the light of day.
What Mr. Sterling said was despicable, but he likely assumed his comments would remain private. But such is today’s media landscape.
After Mr. Sterling’s fate was announced, the Clippers issued a statement that ended with the words: “Now, the healing process begins . . . ”
We hope so. Help Is For Freedom Of Speech In This Country 42 USC 1983 Feb.14 2014
Ban Free Speech, Are You Kidding ? + There have been many proposed responses to the Giffords shooting. Some of them are dumber than others, but all are stupid, especially the idea that we should be limiting freedom of speech. That's a horrible idea.
Here are few of the proposed responses to the Giffords shooting: • Encase the entire House and Senate floor with Plexiglass to stop tourists from throwing something at the Congress (and presumably keep Congress from throwing poop back). ~Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind.How does a shooting at a grocery store lead to the idea that we need to protect the Congress floor from tourists. . . the same tourists who are already searched before they enter the building? There is no logic here. And if this sounds like the Cone of Silence to you or the Ape House at the San Diego Zoo, then you’re smarter than Dan Burton. • Ban the carrying of a firearm within 1,000 feet of any “high-profile” public officials. ~Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y.For starters, these “high-profile public officials” move around. Are you seriously going to arrest people who have a right to carry a gun the moment a Congresscritter hops on a bus with them? Secondly, if someone wants to kill a Congresscritter, they aren’t going to care about a 1,000 feet gun-ban zone. By definition, laws do not deter these people. All this will do is disarm those who might save the Congresscritter. • The federal government should impose tougher drug laws because the Tucson shooter smoked pot. ~David Frum, HackLet me repeat, people who want to assassinate politicians do not care about the law. Moreover, pot hardly inspires people to violence. To the contrary, it inspires laziness and the munchies. Poor thinking Dave. Dave’s not home man. • Use the Federal Communication Commission to force Rush Limbaugh off the air. ~Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C.Right, because political oppression and silencing the opposition keeps paranoids from deciding to kill people, and if we can just force people to stop disagreeing it would be a wonderful world. • Make it illegal to say things that might be considered ‘threatening’ about lawmakers. ~Rep. Robert Brady, D-Pa.Down with free speech! Ok, let's hit this issue of curtailing free speech straight up:
First, the Constitution forbids it, thank God. End of argument.
Secondly, what gives anyone the right to decide what another may say or think? And if we’re going to play that game, what makes you think you’re going to get to decide what it is that everyone else says or thinks?
Third, how does it make any sense to limit free speech when there’s no evidence that any speech incited this guy to do the shooting? He’s a nut. He shot her because he didn’t like the answer she gave to a nonsense question he asked in 2007.
Fourth, where do we draw the line? The New York Times drew a target on Peyton Manning. Was that hate speech? Should we just ban the symbol or also the word “target” or both? Or should we only ban it when it’s used against a person, as in “he’s the target of this investigation”? Do we only ban words that involve shooting? What about words that involve blowing things up? What about words that imply stabbings? Or beatings? Or do we ban beating words only when they include a hint of death? Do we ban “beat him within an inch of his life” or just “beat him to death”? What about words that have become euphemisms? “Take out” usually refers to Chinese food, but we should probably ban that in case it gets used to mean a person. What about “I hate”? That’s dehumanizing and it implies feelings of violence and aggression, should we ban that?
What about “f*ck the cops?” That clearly implies a threat of violence against the police. So do we ban rap music? What about films that inspire violence? A film about an assassination or a bombing could set the unstable off. So could a Discovery Channel show about assassinations, now that I think about it. And if we are going to ban movie violence, how do we decide which kind of movie violence will inspire violence? How about a slap in a romantic comedy? What about cartoon violence? What if the next killer kills because a non-violent cartoon dog told him too? Do we ban cartoon dogs? What about cartoon cats? John Hinckley wanted to get Jodi Foster’s attention, should we ban anyone who can get the attention of a crazy person? Maybe Letterman should be taken off the air, he has a stalker, so there must be something about him that inspires crazy people -- that could cause the unstable to kill someone.
Where do we stop?
Fifth and finally, why are we even drawing lines at all? There are 308 million Americans who did nothing wrong this last weekend, so why are we going to punish them by forcing them to change the way they think and speak and act, by neutering their culture and language, by talking away their entertainment and their rights, just because of the actions of one insane person? I’m sure someone drove drunk too, should be ban cars or alcohol?
If we go down that road, aren't we eventually going to ban everything?
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