Hate speech and the SDMB

Other than self-preservation I have no vested interests here.

OP by Dogface:

The thread inevitably became a pile-on with no additional input from Dogface.

With the exception of Giraffe, who queried the meaning of the OP, there was a lot of invective and rule-breaking (take my word for it) until Libertarian stepped in:

Ultimately the thread was closed by Lynn Bodoni with a threat of banning.
When does an arguably ambiguous statement become hate speech?

When the mods say it is.

what’s ambiguous about saying an entire race of people are stupid savages?

He didn’t say that.

what was he saying then?

No matter what he intended to say, I think you have to reach a lot harder to interpret his statement as NOT asserting that he thinks that “an entire race of people are stupid savages” than it is to interpret that it is.

If I didn’t completely mangle that sentence. :slight_smile:

Moderator’s Note: Since this thread isn’t about the question of freedom of speech and “hate speech” in general (it’s “Hate speech and the SDMB”), and in fact it is specifically about a now-closed Pit thread (which it links to and quotes from extensively), this thread belongs in the BBQ Pit. ("[T]he place for all complaints and other discussion regarding administration of the SDMB.")

So off we go.

It seems he said exactly that, in those exact words.

Well, he didn’t mention any race at all.

He mentioned teenaged boys of possible Pakistani background…

He called someone a group of stupid savages…

He made a blaket statement, “Why do we even keep pretending that these creatures deserve even the tiniest shred of consideration as human beings?”. Now, it may be me, but this seems to be mentioning a group of people that include these boys. The group he’s mentioning would sort of have to mean either people who are described as Pakistanis or teenage boys.

In other words, it was hate speech.

Damn, now it’s in the pit…

I have to agree with the mods on this.

It is certainly possible that the OP was not intended as hate speech, but from the text of the OP it is reasonable to infer that Dogface was calling Pakistanis savages. An inference is not proof, but as Dogface did not return to explain himself, the mods had to make a judgement call.

It may not have been hate speech, but it looked like it easily could be, so they locked it. Though the situation was a little ambiguous, they had to make a call.

Well, I suppose it is within the realm of possibility that Dogface was simply refering to “people who commit felonious assault on strangers” when he used the term “stupid savages,” and not to any particular ethnicity or nationality.

But I wouldn’t put any money on it.

I think this was one of the more bizarre things I’ve seen here. I took the guy to mean that we should stop putting up with religious zealots. Lord knows, pitting religious zealots is a mainstay of SDMB.

Then, Lynn came in and said something about hate speech. I still have no idea what that means. It’s like, there’s something that’s against the rules here, and I don’t know what it is.

Is it speech that disparages someone on account of race? If so, then the recent “white trash” business went eerily unnoticed. Is it speech that disparages someone on acount of religion? If so, then the constant bashing of unpopular Christian fundamentalists regularly escapes moderatorial rebuke. Is it just speech that upsets Lynn?


As I say, I have no idea what Dogface said wrong in that thread, and he got a rather stern and terse warning of being banned.


There was one and only one post in a very short thread that clearly broke a rule, a rule that is officially posted and is easy to understand:

And yet there was not one official word of rebuke for it.

This sort of thing is why liberalism gives me the creeps.

Libertarian do you think we’re a credulous bunch of morons or something? There are only two possible groups that he was referring to: Muslims or Pakistanis, infact it’s not even clear from the story whether the group were religious zealots or not.

It was clearly meant to mean Muslims in general, a fact re-inforced by simply reading Dogface’s past posts.

Not so sure it’s all that clear… but it certainly could be interpreted that way.

And it sure sounds like hate speech to me. I kinda hate to approve of arbitrary standards… but durned if I’d condemn any moderator who simply called it “hate speech” and dumped it. Maybe I can’t tell you exactly what it IS, but I sure know it when I see it…

No, I think you’re a bunch of credulous liberals. And you bring to bear your mind reading skills whenever required.

It is DEFINITELY clear from the article that the group were religious zealots. They were upset over the MORALITY of depicting Muslim women as sexual objects. They reacted with violence. That’s what religious zeaolots DO.

You would think nothing of pitting a fundamentalist Christian who attacked someone at an abortion clinic for the exact same fucking reason, a warped sense of MORALITY.

Lib, are you being deliberately contrary or are you just a cantankerous old curmudgeon?

It was obvious what Dogface was saying, and it had nothing to do with morality, or gangs, or religeous zealots.

Fair enough. Allow me to engage my mind reading skills to the rest of your post:

It’s definitely clear from the article that a guy got attacked by a bunch of teenagers described as being “of Pakistani heritage”.

It’s also clear from the article that they were intending to inflict harm on someone with the same name as the victim, and quite probably the journalist identified in the article.

It could well have been because of the story the journalist had recently written. It could well have been because they were owed money by the journalist. It could have been because they thought that the journalist regularly breakfasted on live babies. That part isn’t known.

Now, my mind reading skills. Lib is thinking:

“Musn’t take pills: Doctor is evil. SDMB: Liberal Communist Nazis. Oooh, colors! Must resist mind control. Aluminum foil. QANTAS.”

You are way smarter than that, Lib. “White trash” is not a racial epithet. It is an insult, but it’s hardly on par with calling some group “savages”.

Ah, I see. Hey, Lib…what you need to do is go to Tools --> Internet Options --> Advanced and disable See only what I want to see. While on the same tab, you might also want to check to make sure you haven’t accidently enabled Liberal conspiracy view, too.