However, an egalitarian society will not be achieved simply because the state has successfully banned the public expression of prejudice (an impossible task, in any event). Prejudiced views, although impeded, will survive in private life and so must be addressed. But more importantly, a social commitment to equality that will stand against the winds of change must rest on a judgment that all persons are deserving of basic respect and on a conscious rejection of prejudiced views. As I have already argued, it may sometimes be necessary to censor speech. When speech is extreme and occurs in a context in which it is unlikely to be examined critically, we should not take the risk that it may effectively encourage its audience to take extreme action. This is not the same, however, as attempting to expunge all instances of prejudiced expression from public discourse in order to advance a broad-based commitment to equality.Would that he had gone further and noted that the "human rights" apparatus in and of itself is having a dire impact on our ability to retain our freedom (said Alexis de Tocqueville: "I know nothing so miserable as a democracy without liberty"). But I suppose under the circumstances (those being the limited scope of Moon's investigation and his desire to retain his bona fides with his peeps, the "human rights" crowd) that's expecting more than a wee bit too much.
Friday, December 17, 2010
In a piece in "Canadian Diversity" (in the runninng for "least appealing publication name ever," no?), "human rights" attorney Richard Moon reaffirms the conclusion of his CHRC-commissioned report--i.e. that, pace the well-intentioned/well-intentioned Jewish mucky-mucks who want to do away with "hate speech," state censorship won't expunge Jew-hate and bring about societal perfection: