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Europe regresses her intellectual freedoms further

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    Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 00:04
With another country deciding to issue punitive fines for a person who expresses their opinion on a historical topic:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-16306376

Frankly I think it's a load of crap that you can fine someone for expressing their opinion in a way that doesn't result in any demonstrable injury to someone. It's absurd to think they lost countless blood and treasure defeating the little Austrian vegetarian last century only to adopt his authoritarian control measures in this one. Bad show, France.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 06:16
Politics pure and simple. Sarkozy wants to score political points with the anti-muslim right (which is undortunately a large segment of French society) so heforced this law. Thankfully France has a large jewish community or else they would have banned halal too just like the Netherlands (which still allows kosher importation even from non-eu countries while banning hala imports except from EU).
 
Funnily enough denying the Holocaust for jews could send you to jail in France but denying it for Gypsies (who proportionally suffered as much as the jews in the Holocaust) can probably get you a compliment from the French press. Wonder why?
 
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Edited by Al Jassas - 23 Dec 2011 at 06:25
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 07:28
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Politics pure and simple. Sarkozy wants to score political points with the anti-muslim right (which is undortunately a large segment of French society) so heforced this law. Thankfully France has a large jewish community or else they would have banned halal too just like the Netherlands (which still allows kosher importation even from non-eu countries while banning hala imports except from EU).
 
Nothing wrong in banning halal slaughter. Animals shall not suffer because of religious superstition.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 07:30
By the way, who will be first to impose a law that punishes those who deny the genocide on Native Americans in North- Central and South America?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 08:06
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

By the way, who will be first to impose a law that punishes those who deny the genocide on Native Americans in North- Central and South America?
 
Supposing there was genocide (I am opposed to use that term anywhere by the way), how many natives in France do you reckon?
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 08:07
Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Politics pure and simple. Sarkozy wants to score political points with the anti-muslim right (which is undortunately a large segment of French society) so heforced this law. Thankfully France has a large jewish community or else they would have banned halal too just like the Netherlands (which still allows kosher importation even from non-eu countries while banning hala imports except from EU).
 
Nothing wrong in banning halal slaughter. Animals shall not suffer because of religious superstition.
 
 
As opposed to the "humane" method of electricution?
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 11:17
I don't suppose death can ever occur without some suffering. The iimportant task is to find ways to reduce the amount of suffering inflicted. Considerations of what some God wants or religion dictates should play no part at all in that decision-making process.  
 
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Address: 231 Getting-off-topic Avenue, Missing-the-point Shire, Kingdom of Going-off-on-an-irrelevant-tangent-for-personal-reasons.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 16:02
You were talking about not doing injury to anyone. I just expanded it to not doing injury to animals. What's the difference?
 
Expressing an opinion can lead to injury to others. Which is why in most democracies there are limits to freedom of speech.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Dec 2011 at 17:03
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

You were talking about not doing injury to anyone. I just expanded it to not doing injury to animals. What's the difference?
 
Expressing an opinion can lead to injury to others. Which is why in most democracies there are limits to freedom of speech.
 
Here is the thing, who can define the kind of injury that forces a government to limit free speech?
 
The only type of speech that directly affects people is libel and maybe agitation (if it can be shown that it actually lead to some harm) and there are sufficient laws to deal with both. Limiting free speech in areas that has nothing to do with those two cases is a basically a violation of civil liberties.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Balaam Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Dec 2011 at 13:24
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Politics pure and simple. Sarkozy wants to score political points with the anti-muslim right (which is undortunately a large segment of French society) so heforced this law. Thankfully France has a large jewish community or else they would have banned halal too just like the Netherlands (which still allows kosher importation even from non-eu countries while banning hala imports except from EU).
 
Nothing wrong in banning halal slaughter. Animals shall not suffer because of religious superstition.
 
 
As opposed to the "humane" method of electricution?
 
Al-Jassas

How is the halal slaughter done over there? We allow halal slaughter at my work but the animal has to be shot first...


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Dec 2011 at 06:06
Originally posted by Constantine XI Constantine XI wrote:

With another country deciding to issue punitive fines for a person who expresses their opinion on a historical topic:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-16306376

Frankly I think it's a load of crap that you can fine someone for expressing their opinion in a way that doesn't result in any demonstrable injury to someone. It's absurd to think they lost countless blood and treasure defeating the little Austrian vegetarian last century only to adopt his authoritarian control measures in this one. Bad show, France.
 
Wow. That is truly scary.
 
Don't get me wrong: I think it would be best, both for the world -- and for Turkey as well -- if she acknowledged what the rest of the planet already recognizes as the reality of the systematic murder of minorities during WWI (Armenians, Greeks, and Assyrians). Honestly, I've never been able to see why Turkey continues to persist with her rubbish, sanitized version of events; the only thing that accomplishes is making the Turkish government and Turkish academics look ridiculous. That said, this sort of bill is definitely the wrong way to address the matter; everyone deserves the opportunity to embarrass themselves. No matter how deluded these apologists are, punishing them -- and especially punishing them so harshly -- for expressing an opinion strikes me as a grave injustice, and a disastrous precedent. I've never really been able to sympathize with some of the odd European speech codes. The whole violently P.C. movement is ridiculous enough in American academia, but to see governments apply it on a national level has always been fairly frightening to me.
 
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Originally posted by gcle gcle wrote:

You were talking about not doing injury to anyone. I just expanded it to not doing injury to animals. What's the difference?


The principle under discussion is one of freedom of expression in circumstances where no demonstrable harm is inflicted on human beings. You went rather off topic.

But then again the two posters before you did also, which is why my comment was not made solely in answer to your own.

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

The only type of speech that directly affects people is libel and maybe agitation (if it can be shown that it actually lead to some harm) and there are sufficient laws to deal with both. Limiting free speech in areas that has nothing to do with those two cases is a basically a violation of civil liberties.


Totally agreed. Legally we already recognise the tangible damage that untrue statements cause to victimised parties. Which is why existing defamation laws are perfectly sufficient.

Originally posted by Akolouthos Akolouthos wrote:


Wow. That is truly scary.
 
Don't get me wrong: I think it would be best, both for the world -- and for Turkey as well -- if she acknowledged what the rest of the planet already recognizes as the reality of the systematic murder of minorities during WWI (Armenians, Greeks, and Assyrians). Honestly, I've never been able to see why Turkey continues to persist with her rubbish, sanitized version of events; the only thing that accomplishes is making the Turkish government and Turkish academics look ridiculous. That said, this sort of bill is definitely the wrong way to address the matter; everyone deserves the opportunity to embarrass themselves. No matter how deluded these apologists are, punishing them -- and especially punishing them so harshly -- for expressing an opinion strikes me as a grave injustice, and a disastrous precedent. I've never really been able to sympathize with some of the odd European speech codes. The whole violently P.C. movement is ridiculous enough in American academia, but to see governments apply it on a national level has always been fairly frightening to me.
 
-Akolouthos


You are a man after my own heart. Whilst I recognise the injustice of not assessing the losses of the Armenian people in the early 20th century, free opinion on academic topics remains an entirely separate issue in which each person ought to possess the freedom to explore it at whim.

The movement IS awfully PC and IS totalitarian. To slug someone with a $29,000 fine for expressing an opinion on this topic is totally absurd. Our Englightenment era ancestors who have learned the value of free expression of academic opinion and the relief of the censorship of absolutist monarchs must be shaking their heads at the folly of their intolerant and narrow minded descendents. The men and women who thought up this law will be consigned to the same historical cesspit as the authoritarian thought leaders who harassed Galileo.


Edited by Constantine XI - 25 Dec 2011 at 12:54
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You are a man after my own heart. Whilst I recognise the injustice of not assessing the losses of the Armenian people in the early 20th century, free opinion on academic topics remains an entirely separate issue in which each person ought to possess the freedom to explore it at whim.

The movement IS awfully PC and IS totalitarian. To slug someone with a $29,000 fine for expressing an opinion on this topic is totally absurd. Our Englightenment era ancestors who have learned the value of free expression of academic opinion and the relief of the censorship of absolutist monarchs must be shaking their heads at the folly of their intolerant and narrow minded descendents. The men and women who thought up this law will be consigned to the same historical cesspit as the authoritarian thought leaders who harassed Galileo.


It is odd how things have come full circle, isn't it? Of course power tends to corrupt even the best sorts of people. When we retreat into our echo chambers and only socialize with those with whom we agree, something like this often results. The history of the Church is littered with instances of this sort.

Truth be told, the potential size of the fine is the thing that made my jaw drop. You could get a nice new car for that much money (at least over here). I honestly can't understand how someone would think this sort of thing up.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Dec 2011 at 19:15

This law has nothing to do with PC. Sarkozy wants votes of the xenophobes and racists in the right wing that will go to Le Pen's daughter (and probably axe him from the race altogether giving the opinion polls). His assault on Turkey is just the latest in a series of moves to cater to these racists which to be fair weren't all directed against muslims but also gypsies and African illegals (while ignoring none gypsie european ones).

Armenians traditionally vote socialist and they he calculates that if this law passes he might edge the socialists out and end up with a face off with Le Pen which he will handidly win (as happened with Chirac in 2002). He doesn't give a rat's ass about Armenians or their plight. He never pressed Turkey on its embargo or even recognised Nagorno-Karabagh. He wants votes and if this gets him votes then so be it.
 
As for Turkey's position on the matter, such laws as these just strengthen the extremists who point out to events that happened to Turks and were not recognised by anyone as a justification to suppress any acknowledgement of what happened or allow any kind of research about it.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Carcharodon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Dec 2011 at 08:25
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Originally posted by Carcharodon Carcharodon wrote:

Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

Politics pure and simple. Sarkozy wants to score political points with the anti-muslim right (which is undortunately a large segment of French society) so heforced this law. Thankfully France has a large jewish community or else they would have banned halal too just like the Netherlands (which still allows kosher importation even from non-eu countries while banning hala imports except from EU).
 
Nothing wrong in banning halal slaughter. Animals shall not suffer because of religious superstition.
 
 
As opposed to the "humane" method of electricution?
 
Al-Jassas
I do not say that all other methods are humane. Instead I think we shall try to improve our handling of animals and not revert back to even more inhumane methods. Especially not out of old religious superstition. Peoples superstitious beliefs ought not to be allowed to harm animals .

Edited by Carcharodon - 27 Dec 2011 at 08:26
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jan 2012 at 05:21
Originally posted by gcle gcle wrote:

You were talking about not doing injury to anyone. I just expanded it to not doing injury to animals. What's the difference?
 
Expressing an opinion can lead to injury to others. Which is why in most democracies there are limits to freedom of speech.


Only if you are going to accept a very vague and substanceless interpretation. The real contention I actually put forward is that free speech ought to not be curtailed when it cannot be shown to inflict demonstrable harm to another individual which is really only the result of the actions of the communicator. But you have run with that and extrapolated it into an entirely different issue (animal slaughter) which really has no bearing on this topic.

But then my comment was aimed at all three of the previous members who posted, not just yourself, so no need to take it personally.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jan 2012 at 05:31
Originally posted by Akolouthos Akolouthos wrote:

It is odd how things have come full circle, isn't it? Of course power tends to corrupt even the best sorts of people. When we retreat into our echo chambers and only socialize with those with whom we agree, something like this often results. The history of the Church is littered with instances of this sort.

Truth be told, the potential size of the fine is the thing that made my jaw drop. You could get a nice new car for that much money (at least over here). I honestly can't understand how someone would think this sort of thing up.


I am agreed with your analogy with the history of the church, though of course that tends to be the case with any supreme authority structure throughout history - be they corporations or unions or totalitarian governments; give them free reign with no checks an balances and they take the opportunity to commit ideological abuses for their own selfish reasons.

I think my main contention here is that the prohibition issued should not be illegal at all. Our ancestors in the Enlightenment Era fought against the censorship laws which were almost everywhere enforced throughout Europe (with the one exception of a German duchy with no censorship laws whose name escapes me at this moment). The opposition of the European intelligentsia to these usually royalist laws is one thing which opened up Western civilisation to being more willing to explore new ideas and make advancements. And European society and culture progressed because of this. Today a new ideological elite wishes to enforce the same measures which 18th century absolutist rulers once tried to enforce on the nascent path to early totalitarianism. And I say we ought to, like our ancestors, resist this re-introduction of unnecessary and injust laws. To think we could be subject to the same unfair limitations and burdens as the people of absolutist Europe 300 years prior is an absolute travesty, and ought to be resisted utterly.

Besides that priciple, the proportion of the penalty is a trifling thing. But I do agree that for a "crime" which results in so little demonstrable harm, the subtraction of the entire yearly income of a typical developed world person is harsh in the extreme.


Edited by Constantine XI - 02 Jan 2012 at 05:45
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Jan 2012 at 14:27
You might take account of the fact that it may never become law at all.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jan 2012 at 06:11
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

You might take account of the fact that it may never become law at all.


We can only hope so!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paradigm of Humanity Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jan 2012 at 22:30
All I can say, there's nobody in Turkey really speaking about it was genocide or wasn't at this point. Whole opinion turned towards freedom of speech. Even Armenians in Turkey strongly opposing the bill and considering it as an insult.

All other comments here are so subjective, I can say we are living in different worlds. Despite sharing same world, our perception of world is drastically different. Let whoever wants to live in his/her little paperboard box, let them live in there.


Edited by Paradigm of Humanity - 04 Jan 2012 at 22:31
the single postmodern virtue of obsessive egalitarianism
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     I stumbled upon a piece by French writer Bernard Henri-Levy explaining why he supports the law. I don't necessarily agree with the law myself but he does take some words out of my mouth in regards to who this law targets and why it does not set any precedent or impediment to historians as far as France or western Europe is concerned:

Are these people really incapable of comprehending? Or are they just pretending not to understand?

The law whose purpose is to penalize negationist revisionism, voted before Christmas by the French parliament, does not propose to write history in the place of historians. And this for the simple reason that this history has been told and written, well written, for a long time. This we have always known: that, beginning in 1915, the Armenians were the victims of a methodic attempt at annihilation. A wealth of literature has been devoted to the subject, based in particular upon the confessions offered by the Turkish criminals themselves, starting with Hoca Ilyas Sami, almost immediately after the fact. From Yehuda Bauer to Raul Hilberg, from researchers at Yad Vashem to Yves Ternon and others, no serious historian casts doubt upon this reality or denies it. In other words, this law has nothing to do with the will to establish a truth of state. No representative of the French National Assembly who voted for it saw himself as a substitute for historians or their work. Together, they only intended to recall this simple right, that of each of us not to be publicly attacked -- and its corollary, the right to demand reparations for this particularly outrageous offense which is the insult to the memory of the dead. It is a question of law, not one of history.

Presenting this law as one that denies liberty, one likely to hamper the work of historians is another strange argument that makes one wonder. It is the negationist revisionists who, up until now, have hampered the work of historians. It is their mad ideas, their hare-brained concepts, their twisting of facts, their terrifying and breathtaking lies that shake the earth upon which, in principle, a science should be built. And in punishing them, making their task more complicated, alerting the public that it is dealing not with scholars but with those who would enflame minds, that the law protects and shelters history. Is there one historian who has been prevented from working on the Shoah by the Gayssot law punishing denial of the Holocaust? Is there one author who, in good conscience, can claim that it has limited his freedom to do research and to raise questions? And isn't it clear that the only ones this law has seriously hindered are the Faurissons, the Irvings, and the other Le Pens? Well, the same applies to the genocide of the Armenians. This law, when the Senate will have ratified it, will be a stroke of fortune for historians, who can finally work in peace. Unless... Yes, unless those who oppose the law express this other, cloudier reservation: that it would be a bit premature to come to a conclusion, precisely and for nearly a century, of "genocide".

Some still say, isn't there some other way than the law to intimidate the "assassins on paper"? And hasn't the truth in itself, in its starkness and its rigour, the means to defend itself and to triumph over those who would deny it? It is a vast debate, one which has been discussed, in parenthesis, since the origins of philosophy. And to which one adds, in the case at hand, a specific parameter stating that, when in doubt, it is prudent to make sure one is backed up by the law. This parameter is the negationist revisionism of the Turkish State. And this specificity is that the negationists there are not just a vague bunch of cranks, but people who are supported by resources, diplomacy, the capacity for blackmail and retaliation of a powerful State. Imagine the situation of the survivors of the Shoah had the German State been a negationist State after the war. Imagine the immensity of their additional distress and anger had they been confronted, not with a sect of loonies, but with an unrepentant Germany that brought pressure upon their partners by threatening them with angry retaliation should they call the extermination of the Jews at Auschwitz genocide. It is, mutatis mutandis, the situation of the Armenians. And that is also why they have the right to a law.

And finally, I would add that it's time to stop mixing everything up and drowning the Armenian tragedy in the ritualized blahblahblah assailing the "memorial laws". For this law is not a memorial law. It is not one of those dangerous power plays capable of laying the path for dozens if not hundreds of absurd or blackguardly rules, codifying what one has the right to say about the Saint Bartholomew's Day massacre, the meaning of colonization, slavery, the Civil War, the misdemeanor of blasphemy and heaven knows what else. It is a law concerning a genocide -- which is not the same. It is a law sanctioning those who, in denying it, intensify and perpetuate the genocidal act -- which is something else entirely. There are not, thank God, hundreds of genocides, or even dozens. There are three. Four, if we add the Cambodians to the Armenians, the Jews, and the Rwandans. And to place these three or four genocides on the same level as all the rest, to make their penalization the antechamber of a political correctness that authorizes a stream of useless or perverse laws on the disputed aspects of our national memory, to say, "Watch it! You're opening a Pandora's box from which everything and anything can pop out !" is another imbecility, exacerbated by another infamy and sealed with a dishonesty that is, really, grotesque.

Let us confront this specious line of argument with the wisdom of national representation. And may the senators complete the process by refusing to be intimidated by this little band of historians.


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bernardhenri-levy/on-the-armenian-genocide-_b_1181758.html
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jan 2012 at 20:16
Wish to see such passionate condemnation of Mr. Levy to what happened in Algeria ca. 1954-1962...
 
Oh was it the French who did it? The French can never do genocide or massacres, they are merciful people.
 
Anyway Mr. Levy lost all credibility during the Iraq and Gaza wars. Not to mention his idiotic comment about niqab which he still stands by.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ArmenianSurvival Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jan 2012 at 20:29
I'm not familiar with Mr. Levy and what he supports or not. You may be right, I don't know. I posted the article to highlight the arguments, not the author.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jan 2012 at 21:07
Originally posted by ArmenianSurvival ArmenianSurvival wrote:

I'm not familiar with Mr. Levy and what he supports or not. You may be right, I don't know. I posted the article to highlight the arguments, not the author.
 
The point is this guy assumes the title of "defender" of freedom while he is the first one to take aim on it when it doesn't suit his political agenda.
 
Using his own words that he signed in his infamous MANIFESTO about western civilisation and totalitarianism crap he is committing hypocracy of the 1st degree. In that manifesto he rejected blasphamy/apostacy laws yet he supports passing a law doing just that, punishing those who committ historical blashphamy.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ArmenianSurvival Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Jan 2012 at 22:45
Again, he might be a hypocrite for all I know. It does not change the validity of his argument in regards to the article I posted. Even vile people can voice noble opinions.

In the case of comparing blasphemy to genocide denial, Mr. Levy is not being inconsistent because the nature of the two are completely different. Blasphemy is critique and/or rejection of the metaphysical, the unseen, and the untouchable, while genocide denial is a denial of a crime which has been proven by concrete evidence. Denying a crime is only done by those who either participated in the crime, were complicit in it, or endorse its outcome. The influence of people in any of those 3 categories needs to be minimized. Whether the French bill is the right way or not is up for debate.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goban Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 2012 at 04:05
Originally posted by Constantine XI Constantine XI wrote:


You are a man after my own heart. Whilst I recognise the injustice of not assessing the losses of the Armenian people in the early 20th century, free opinion on academic topics remains an entirely separate issue in which each person ought to possess the freedom to explore it at whim.

The movement IS awfully PC and IS totalitarian. To slug someone with a $29,000 fine for expressing an opinion on this topic is totally absurd. Our Englightenment era ancestors who have learned the value of free expression of academic opinion and the relief of the censorship of absolutist monarchs must be shaking their heads at the folly of their intolerant and narrow minded descendents. The men and women who thought up this law will be consigned to the same historical cesspit as the authoritarian thought leaders who harassed Galileo.


Hasn't academic freedom long been curtailed by political connectedness? What's new? Any research that proves to be defamatory could cost you your job and reputation as a scholar regardless of how strong the evidence supports it. A next logical step would be to fine and imprison you for the attempt... Big smile

  


Edited by Goban - 12 Jan 2012 at 04:08
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 2012 at 07:48
Though untill now I did want to participate in this debate, I find the whole idea of Turkey or the state around it to the east and south to be advocates of "freedom of speech" or other "freedoms" a bit questionable to say the least! If I should  react to international "injustices" or "express my disapproval" I would chose something else. (not that this kind of legislation may not be questioned).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 2012 at 08:59
Originally posted by ArmenianSurvival ArmenianSurvival wrote:

Again, he might be a hypocrite for all I know. It does not change the validity of his argument in regards to the article I posted. Even vile people can voice noble opinions.
 
No it does. He advocates for freedom of speech yet his version is tailored to his politics. I can give numerous examples of 20th century holocausts that he didn't include in his article because they conflict with his ideology because his people committed them
 

Originally posted by ArmenianSurvival ArmenianSurvival wrote:

In the case of comparing blasphemy to genocide denial, Mr. Levy is not being inconsistent because the nature of the two are completely different. Blasphemy is critique and/or rejection of the metaphysical, the unseen, and the untouchable, while genocide denial is a denial of a crime which has been proven by concrete evidence. Denying a crime is only done by those who either participated in the crime, were complicit in it, or endorse its outcome. The influence of people in any of those 3 categories needs to be minimized. Whether the French bill is the right way or not is up for debate.
 
Yes he is being inconsistant. Logically speaking both blasphamy and denying genocide (what ever supposed genocide is) are equivalent, both deny something that other people believe exist.
 
Besides, whats next, jailing people for saying the earth is flat? Logically speaking this is an even firmer "truth" than even the holocaust which means anyone who believe in the flatness of the earth is "denying" an absolute truth, not a relative one like a historical event.
 
Welcome to the new inquisition.
 
Al-Jassas  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12 Jan 2012 at 09:48
Armenian Survival:
 
I agree with you and the overwhelming majority of scholars regarding the manifest fact of the systematic extermination of Armenians by the Ottoman state in its twilight. Indeed, the continued posturing and denials by the Turkish government are by far the greatest embarrassment to the Turkish state, and betray vocal Turks and Turkish "academics", when they seek to revise history, as so many petulant children to the rest of the world. I honestly don't know why they seek to keep it up; better to admit, repent, and move on than to deny in the face of a wealth of evidence and a political firestorm. And yes: the hypothetical situation of an unrepentant Germany after the Holocaust is precisely to the point.
 
That said, this potential law troubles me. For that matter, I oppose speech codes in general. It isn't that I don't acknowledge the reality of the holocaust, or the humiliation of the Turkish state that has stemmed from their cowardly and childish denial of the Armenian genocide, among others. It is only that I believe that one of the fundamental principles of modern liberalism is that people should be allowed to speak any damnfool thing that pops into their mind without fear of reprisal.
 
Hopefully Turkey will grow up in the next decade or so. But so long as they choose to use their substantial resources to maintain a childish -- and false -- sense of innocence and ignorance, how can we punish those poor, ignorant souls who simply buy into it?
 
-Akolouthos
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