Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Like it or not: "Hate Speech" is Free Speech

There has been a movement going on for decades now to control the speech of people whose views we find offensive or abhorrent. Through the years, our society has conditioned itself to be on alert for any statements, broadcasts, or images that may even remotely offend the tender sensibilities of minorities, women, the handicapped, the poor, the religious, or any other group capable of being labeled as a victim. The "progressive" movement in particular has rallied to the cause of banning what they have termed "hate speech" - that is, any speech or opinion they disagree with.

But each time we call out for the silencing of those whose opinions we find ugly or hateful, we take another step forward towards the subjugation of our free society. For the line between what is acceptable and what is unacceptable will gradually become more and more hazy. Already we have seen the definition of "hate" itself become more vague. Can we be too far off, then, from a time when all speech and expression will be routinely regulated?

Laugh at the notion if you wish. But in other parts of the world, the slide into restricted speech has already begun. Glenn Greenwald talks about this sad development at his blog on Salon.com. Check out his story, and also take the time to watch the video of a conservative publisher being questioned by a government official about his political views. Keep in mind, too, that the country the video was recorded in is none other than our progressive neighbor to the north, Canada.

Quite Orwellian. And disturbing.

You can also see the video below.


Conservative publisher being questioned by an Alberta government official.


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Thursday, January 03, 2008

Web Lessons and Blogging

On Tuesday, February 12th, from 10:00am to 11:30am, I will be teaching a free class on the Internet at the Springfield City Library, entitled, "Internet 101 - Welcome to the Web". This class is for folks new to the Internet and who would like to learn more about how to navigate the Web and find resources.

To learn more, or to sign up (or sign up a friend or relative), visit this linked webpage and scroll down to the "Internet 101 - Welcome to the Web" class.

Again, my class time is February 12th, 10:00am to 11:30am.


In addition to the above class, in March I will also be conducting two free blogging classes at the City Library for those folks interested in blogs and blogging. Blogs are like online journals, where folks can write about their lives, politics, religion, or whatever they choose. The first class is "Blogs 101", which goes over the basics of blogs - what they are, how to find them, and what they offer that mainstream media doesn't. The second class is "Blogging Basics", where I instruct folks on how to make a blog, write a blog, upload photos and video, and more.

The "Blogs 101" class is scheduled for Tuesday, March 4th, 10:00am to 11:30am.
The "Blogging Basics" class is scheduled for Tuesday, March 11th, 10:00am to 11:30am.

To sign up for one of these classes - or both of them, go to this same linked page and scroll down to "Blogs 101" and "Blogging Basics".

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