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Posted by wmmbb in Blogging in general, Human Rights.

I am just now recharging the batteries after a stint in the Catallaxy echo chamber.

Given the inevitable vilification, perhaps the decencies owed to hospitality can be temporarily put aside. The usual suspects there may well be fanatics, but previously I had not considered to included the good Professor Sinclair Davidson. But that description might be another version of Libertarian.

Consider his following comments.


There is no role for “civility” in a free speech debate. Those who would steal our birthright are scum who deserve all the contempt they have earned. There can be no surrender, no compromise, and no meeting of minds.


wmmb – my ancestors fought in ditches so I can be free. Some of my relatives died in those ditches. I will not besmirch their memory or sacrifice to appease the sensitivities of useful idiots or wannabe mass murderers.

The first I consider a logically incongruous argument, but more so, inconsistent with the processes and purposes of democratic debate. The second is purely emotive, if not in fact, in attribution. The idiocy comes in, if not before, with the reference to mass murderers. The bad guy/good guy division of humanity where murder can be identified represents endorsement of murder.

For your amusement you can read the comments, including my somewhat bumbling and humble observations – you know the form – and my comments that were the object of all the invective.

That was until out the blue an ally came along, and we bashed up on another commentator. How often does that dynamic emerge in which the oppressed become the oppressor?

On a deeper level, that of nonviolence I am supposing I failed. Ego keeps on getting in the way as the fingers fly off the keyboard.

“Where were the brains of the AG’s Department”? is a good question. I was attempting to model at Catallaxy (among other purposes) by my presence and responses that there a times, people and circumstances where grossly, overt invective can be reasonably met with equanimity. We might recognize there are other circumstances, involving other people in which invective and hatred can make their lives miserable and diminished. I don’t know where the lines should be drawn in these instances, who should be included, but their is a strong case for doing so. I am not prepared to make a case for my right for freedom of speech, or anything else, that would exclude your equal and effective right regardless of who you might be, and recognizing without exception that circumstances can make any person powerless and vulnerable.

Apparently, Human Rights only came into forefront in the Eighteenth Century. The lecture begins at 0:8:45

(There are references that fair representation of the issues involved from which perspective and views might be first checked. The thing is that if we start off with a closed, uninformed mind: it is unlikely we come to a balanced judgment of any kind on any subject. I take that principle to be instructive to me, in the first instance.)

  • Belinda Smith, Free Speech and other Human Rights: The Clause that almost sank the Human Rights Bill (The Conversation)
  • TGIF: Economy or Catallaxy? (fff.org)
  • Human Rights For All (saanyagulati.com)
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