Facebook And Free Speech - And Response (4)

Monday, May 14, 2018

A few minutes ago I tried to share a story of a Muslim man in England who has seven wives and 22 children and collects $360,000 a year from the government.

 

When I shared that I said that “it will be happening here soon" and "we should deport all Muslims."

 

I got a note from Facebook saying this is "hate speech."

 

I challenged it and they said it would take at least 24 hours to adjudicate it.

 

Now I am not allowed to post anything. 

 

This is an affront to free speech.

 

Charlie Benson

Chattanooga

 

* * *

 

Unreal.

Censored for speaking the truth.

 

Buddy D. Ford

 

* * * 

 

Facebook can censure anything on their site because they are stockholder owned. Only government entities can be held to the first amendment. 


That being said, there doesn't seem to be a clear definition of hate speech on Facebook. The page "filming cops" showed up on my timeline advocating the murder of cops anytime and anyplace. I reported that to Facebook and was told that it was an opinion only and wasn't considered to be hate speech. They recommend blocking the page if I find it distasteful. 


So, it is their baseball and you either play the game their way or they just take their ball and go home.

Harry Presley 

 

* * * 

 

Mr. Benson, did you take time to check out the story you were trying to spread in order to determine if it was legitimate? I did a quick search, and the only story even remotely related to yours actually originated in Germany and not England. The number of wives were four and not seven.

 

The story appears to have been taken from an original legitimate German headline article speaking on the difficulties some refugee families have in attempting to resettle and adjust to a foreign land. That story is allege to have been taken by some third party, spruced up some maybe and, according the snopes, that third party did an estimation of what a family with four wives and 23 children might, not in fact do or did, receive in social benefits in Germany, and not how much a particular refugee family actually received, if anything at all.

 

It's like that sweepstakes you get in the mail that say to the effect, "IF" you are the 50th person to respond you "might" win. No one ever knows who that "50th" person is, because he/she doesn't exist and the sweepstakes never intended declare a winner anyway. The word "IF". Such a tiny two letter word with so much power so many often overlook. The next seemingly insignificant word "might". 

 

Does it bother you or matter to you at all that spreading such false information is a leading cause of ethnic, racial, class, gender and religious hatred? The stuff that once inspired lynch mobs? It doesn't take much to get the pitch fork and torch bearing crowd all up in arms when targeting a certain group. They're easily swayed. Left unchallenged, it has a tendency to become their norm. 

 

Do yourself, your soul and your conscious a favor. Check it out before spreading it around. 

 

Score one for Facebook. They refused to allow you to spread such an obviously questionable story. 

Brenda Washington 

 

* * * 

 

It's a shame that people misunderstand the concept of free speech so often.  It reflects poorly on our education system and culture.  The first amendment means that the government can't jail you for what you say or otherwise censor your speech.  Companies like Facebook are allowed to censor your speech because they're not the government.  You agree to that when you agree to their terms and conditions.  Also, it is completely legal for a larger group to drown out your speech with theirs.  Such an incident wouldn't be a violation of free speech.  How would we decide whose free speech to protect in that case?

 

Also, free speech doesn't mean that speech is free of social consequences.  If someone says something hateful and is then shunned by society as a pariah, that is actually a prime example of the freedom of speech because people are expressing themselves to label that person a social leper.  

We would be much better off as a society if people were more educated on our laws and system of government.

R.J. Mitchell
Chattanooga

 


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