Hitchens was not always adept distinguishing between the offensive and the destructive. Criticizing a set of ideas is one thing. Promoting discriminatory toxicity is another. And its funny because he was always the defender of the marginalized but, uncommonly for a brit, was an absolute free speech crusader. I just look at Poland right now, the way the public so openly equates LGTBQ+ with pedophilia and the violence and harshness that LGTBQ+ people face. It reminds me of what happened in history when a particular race was treated as such and how quickly it escalated. It’s one thing to be offended about a set of ideas you hold (political ideology, religion) or sensibilities. It’s another to be reviled, slandered and demeaned because of an inherent quality you cannot change.
I know many Polish people living and working in Ireland. None of them are happy with the election results. LGBT ideology-free zones in Poland are a disgrace and done under the guise of being “pro family“. When you hear of such human rights abuses you can be sure the Catholic Church is loitering with intent nearby and busily removing bricks from the constitutional wall of separation. Sound familiar? Kurwa mac!
Absolute free speech is an American concept Simon. It has never existed in Europe/Canada/Aust/NZ/Japan/S.Korea. And the only British (and European people) I know who advocate it are conservative or far-right people who are annoyed they are no longer able to vilify and discriminate against groups of people they despise. A just and free society can only be measured by how equal and included the most vulnerable in society are. Freedom, as a just concept is meaningless if the majority uses it to hinder the freedom of minorities.
The live and let live myth is a total complete utter fantasy. A silly illusion. It is most evident by the anger that white people feel when the mere possibility that their country isn’t the tollerant biggotry free paradise they think they live in. The idea that just because they don’t see overt racism, homophobia (and even sexism) means its solved and part of the past. However millions of non-white people, LGTBQ+ and women beg to differ. The difference between 20 years ago and now is that people are far less silent about how the discrimination, bullying, insults and visual contempt affects their lives. The idea that it cannot be tollerated. No…it is not a live and let live country for those who don’t live in the illusion that all is well again (that is the many people who suffer the less visible ramifications of it). It’s incredible how indignant people can be even when say, 70% of black people say they regularly face discrimination, a huge majority of LGTBQ+ have faced blatant hostility or even violence and an overwhelming majority of women face sexual harassment at work. I mean…are they all exaggerating? Live and let live is simply a way to say: no…there aren’t serious problems, all is well, lets stop talking about this…it’s all a problem of the past…and toxic hate speech doesn’t really hurt people, it doesn’t keep them down, just brush it off…live and let live. Easy to say when you never face it.
This reply was modified 3 weeks, 4 days ago by Davis.