Debate 3.2 Group Presentation on the chapter, “Is Hate Speech Free Speech?”
Presenters for this Week: Emily Hussey and Aneesia Koutsohanos
Topic: Rules against hate speech are too broad, and instead we should address the problem of hate speech by exposing it and discussing it in the classroom.
The term hate speech is used to describe any kind of expression that insults a personâ€s form of identity such as race, ethnicity, religion, gender or sexual orientation. Every individual in the United States of America has the right of freedom of speech provided by the First Amendment. However, free speech could end up being interpreted as hate speech by a group that may feel attacked in some way, promoting disputes among groups. Dealing with hate speech is challenging, because a person could be expressing their views on a matter concerning a certain group in a genuine manner, but their expression could end up being insulting or inciting to another group (George, 2015). Therefore it is difficult to rule out whether an individual is expressing hate or just being genuine about their feelings. Rules against hate speech are broad and the problem should be addressed by exposing and discussing about it.
In particular, hate speech brings about a broad view of the rights to be protected by the constitution; the rights of equal treatment and freedom of expression (George, 2015). America has a large presentation of individuals with different identities who need to be protected against expressions that may make them feel insignificant. Most times people have to go silent when they are being attacked based on their identity because everyone has the freedom to express their thoughts. The silence is the price one has to pay for freedom, and hate speech gets justified. There is a gray area in the rules directed against hate speech in the US as the government is not allowed to pick a side that they can favor or suppress in case of a debate. Due to that, making laws regarding hate speech in situations affecting a specific group of individuals would result to unconstitutional discrimination.
For the most part, rules that should govern against hate speech are broad and very unclear. Therefore the best way to address the issue should be by exposing it as it is. Also the issue should be discussed in classrooms because everyone gets affected either directly or indirectly at some point. Also, schools have a wide representation of the identity groups present in a community. Acts of hate speech should be denounced in clear terms because silence and lack of response creates room for confusion, fear and distrust to develop (Willoughby, 2012). School administrators should make it clear that hate has no place in the school.
In case a hate crime happens in or outside the school setting, exposing the act and discussing about it will promote healing to the group of individuals affected (Willoughby, 2012). Discussing about it will also help in formation of support for identity groups that may be targeted by hate speech. Talking about it will also enable everyone to give their perspective on the issue and form a deeper understanding of what the targeted groups may be going through, promoting cohesion in the community. Therefore talking about hate speech is the best way to address it than keeping quiet about it.
George, C. (2015). Hate Speech Law and Policy. In The International Encyclopedia of Digital Communication and Society (First Edit, pp. 1â€“10). John Wiley & Sons, Inc. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781118290743/wbiedcs139
Willoughby, B. (2012). Responding to Hate and Bias at School. Teaching Tolerance, 14â€“15.
2. Rules against hate speech are too broad, and instead we should address the problem of hate speech by exposing it and discussing it in the classroom.
I would have to disagree with such statement; too many restrictions take away the meaning of freedom of speech.Although there were other laws passed later in relation to the First Amendment that â€œdefineâ€ freedom of speech, the First Amendment to the United States Constitution allows people to speak freely without consequences.As a mother, I wouldnâ€t want my son exposed to such â€œhateâ€ to early in life, let kids be kids and its up to parents to teach their child how to behave and treat one another.Manners start at home.
There is no legal definition under U.S. law that defines â€œhate speechâ€. However, hate speech is any form of speech in which speakers connote to disparage or incite hatred against a group or class of a persons. As mentioned, the First Amendment protects speech no matter how offensive its content. Furthermore, to be more clear, it doesnâ€t protect behaviors that involves focusing threats or harassment, or creates a hostile environment. But simply, bigoted or offensive speech doesnâ€t raise to that level; figuring weather or not that line has been crossed is based on case-by-case basis.
Weather we realize it or not, we all perform some sort of â€œhate speechâ€ at one time or another. As not every single person in the world shares the same beliefs, even on what defines â€œhate speechâ€, thus leaving the grey area. There is a line and when its crossed, yes, there should be some sort of repercussion to the responsible person(s). However, what if someone has a gathering of people agreeing with their speech in a public space and someone was passing by chooses to yell out at the speaker with opposing ideas and that person is the one who creates the hostile environment, endangering others, whose at fault? Not the speaker. The person who reacted negatively to the speech is. Deciding at what age, in a classroom, gets to be exposed to discussing hate speech would be a tough job.I think raising our children to be more humbled, not be so sensitive and easily offended by others beliefs, but to offer help others and to be kind to one another, taking away from the classroom curriculum should be about learning, not hate speech. It should be about educating on history, mathematics, things that will affect them to be a responsible adult later in life. The focus in the classroom has shifted in what I consider a negative way.For example, they took away wood-shop class.Of course, not every student will grow to find a career in that field but meeting many younger people these days, they donâ€t understand how to change a door handle, or how to use a screw driver.To take even more time away from actually educating in the classroom, to spend time and funds on â€œhate speechâ€ is quite repulsive.
“Hate Speech and Hate Crime”, American Library Association, December 12, 2017.
Rebuttal and Question
The idea that citizens can exercise the freedom of speech, even if the information they produce can directly or indirectly harm others has become sort of a norm these days. Even though â€œwe all perform some sort of hate speech at one time or another,â€ as Emily mentioned, thereâ€s still different forms of hate speech more serious, mostly in politics, and gender and equality debates. According to Rieger et al. self-respect and dignity of group members can be threatened by such assertions (462). This eventually leads to slackened or even reversed personal development (Arthur and Tatchell). It is essential to put more effort in finding solutions to this issue. Education and increasing awareness among the young population will help in solving hate speech in a long term. Although classrooms are for learning math, history, english, it doesnâ€t hurt to throw in a hour of discussing todayâ€s issues in this world. I wish I had a class that gave me insight to the everyday problems. Although history is important, Iâ€ve heard many people say they havenâ€t used anything they learned in history or ceramics years later out of school. She claims that manners start at home, but what if you didnâ€t have the perfect childhood. Unfortunately there are kids out there that had no structure at home and their parents didnâ€t care to teach them certain things. For some kids school might be their getaway. This is even a place where they learn everything they were taught. They can at least learn a thing or two about free speech in a classroom.
For the most part, the First Amendment of the United States Constitution allows for people to speak freely without consequences. In the same reason, it is correct to mention that â€œthe constitution does not protect behaviorâ€ in curbing hate speech. Laws were later passed in relation to this amendment that removed some types of speech from protection by the first amendments. Such include the act of perjury and blackmail. However, it is important to understand what is meant by the limitation and restrictions on speech, especially hate speech is not the prevention of someone to exercise the right to speech, but rather a following punishment.
Discussion Question: Do you think we should be addressing this topic in classrooms? If, so what age should we start?
Arthur, Joyce. and Tatchell, Peter. â€œArgument â€“ Should hate speech be a crime?â€ Newint.org.https://newint.org/sections/argument/2012/12/01/is-hate-speech-crime-argument Accessed 22 March 2019 (Links to an external site.).
Rieger, Diana, Josephine B. Schmitt, and Lena Frischlich. “Hate and counter-voices in the Internet: Introduction to the special issue.” SCM Studies in Communication and Media 7.4 (2018): 459-472.
Rebuttal and Discussion Question
In Jadeâ€s first paragraph she mentions how â€œdealing with hate speech is challenging, because a person could be expressing their views on a matter concerning a certain group in a genuine manner, but their expression could end up being insulting or inciting to another groupâ€.Well, yes.America is about being diverse and a country to express yourself and believe in what you want. However, someone, somewhere will always be offended by someone else.There is no such thing as a world were people believe in the same exact thing, thus causing some sort of tension or â€œhateâ€.Jade proceeds to state in her second paragraph that â€œsilence is the price one has to pay for freedom, and hate speech gets justified.I completely disagree, as everyone has a voice and clearly many choose to voice their opinion for all to hear. The government will not be able to make defined rules as every person is different in every way thus creating a completely different scenario in every case.Schools have noted that hate speech is not tolerated and yet it still happens. Its like drugs, their illegal but theyâ€re still present.
Overall, unfortunately, there will never be a â€œperfect worldâ€ where there is restriction on what is supposed to be free.There is no way to brainwash people into believing and following the same exact thing; religion for example.No matter how much hate speech is talked about, the only real way that seems legitimate, is teaching our children to respect others and teaching them manners regardless of race, gender, religion or sexual orientation, and with hopes that the world will one day change.And this all starts with us as individuals. Give a positive impression to the younger generations; to be positive role models, the bigger person.Absolutely there can be support groups for those having a difficult time dealing with their experiences or to express themselves, but talking about things verse taking action are two different things.There has been a lot of talk but as our world has come to show, clearly there hasnâ€t been enough action; most actions noted lately have caused more harm then good.
Discussion Questions:As diverse as America is, how should the government create laws that define hate speech without taking away â€˜freedomâ€? Should teacher be teaching this in the classroom?
Debate 8.2 Group Presentation on The Omnivore’s Dilemma pp. 134-184
Presenters for this Debate: Logan Sinclair and Qiyuan Liang
Industrial organic food is not much better than conventional industrial food (182-184)
In recent years, the food industry has seen a significant increase in the demand for organic foods over the alternative choice of conventionally grown food. â€œIn 2010, the organic food market was estimated at 29 billion dollars, and since then, it is grown by almost 10 percent a yearâ€, and with the increase in the organic food field, some large organic food companies show up and the scale of organic farms are getting bigger and bigger. However, is industrial organic food much better than conventional industrial food?
When organic food produced in large-scale farming, it does not look very organic at all. A large company like Whole Foods, which needs a large-scale supply of produce, will only contract with bigger organic farms, and the farming process in fact involves a complex chain of production to grow the various foods. Also, Pollan observes a free-range chicken Rosie, which means she should be allowed to go outdoors. Yet, in this case, the natural impulse of a chicken to roam outdoors has been checked by human intervention and Pollan states that â€œThe chicken lived only marginally better lives than their conventional counterparts.â€ In the end, the essence does not change; a CAFO (concentrated animal feeding operation) is a CAFO still, whether the food served with organic or not. The idea of free-range chicken is a fiction for those farms, rather than a real â€œorganicâ€.
There is very little scientific evidence to support any health benefits for organic products. In fact, there is growing evidence that a diet rich in organic products isnâ€t actually better for you. There is a meta-analysis in 2009 reveals that there was no nutrient difference in organic with conventional foods. Whatâ€s more, the biggest advantage of organic food is that they donâ€t have any chemical pesticides, but a study in 2010, shows that organic pesticides could have worse environmental impacts than conventional pesticides. It is a fact that organic pesticides come from natural resources contain the same substances, elements as conventional pesticides.
Also, the larger-scale organic farm is polluting more than the conventional one. Researchers at Oxford University found that organic products like organic milk, cereals, pork generated higher greenhouse gas emissions per product than conventional farmings. Therefore, as the scale of organic farm getting bigger, the more pollution, greenhouse gas is generating and the waste of land and energy would increase significantly. As Pollan said â€œThe inspiration for organic was to find a way to feed ourselves more in keeping with the logic of nature, to build a food system that looked more like an ecosystem that would draw its fertility and energy from the sunâ€ (Pollan), rather than producing â€œorganic foodâ€ in order to chase the profit in the organic food industry.
ANDRE, MIHAI. â€œIs Organic Food Actually Better? Here’s What the Science Says.â€ ZME Science, 20 Dec. 2018, www.zmescience.com/other/science-abc/organic-food-science02092015/ (Links to an external site.).
Pollan, Michael. The Omnivore’s Dilemma: a Natural History of Four Meals. Penguin Books, 2016.
Is Industrial organic food is not much better than conventional industrial food (182-184)
I disagree with the statement saying that organic food is not much better than conventional industrial food. When being cautious of our health it is important to look at what is going on and in our bodies, and when it comes to our food eating organic is a much safer choice. Conventional farms use systemic pesticides which are absorbed into the plant not just on the surface of the plant. You cannot simply wash these pesticides off of your food- so by eating non organic foods you are also eating pesticides which many are known to be carcinogenic meaning they have the potential to to cause cancer. When organic produce is tested it consistently comes up with fewer pesticide residues than non-organic produce. This is why organic food is a much better choice.
When a food item is labeled as â€œ100% organicâ€ this means that the item is made with all organic ingredients. When a food item is labeled as â€œorganicâ€ this means that it contains at least 95 percent organic ingredients and the other 5 percent must not contain ingredients that are banned from organic foods such as GMOs and artificial dyes. When you packaging that says â€œmade with organic ingredientsâ€ this means it contains at least 70 percent organic ingredients but these products are not allowed to use the USDA Organic seal where as the other labels I mentioned are permitted to use the USDA Organic seal. (USDA Organic Labeling Standards).
So does eating organic really make a difference to our health? There is limited scientific data to prove this point as Pollan talks about in The Omnivores Dilemma, there are studies that show organic foods are much more nutritious. One study that I find very informative was published by PLOS ONE and found that organic tomatoes have much higher vitamin C and antioxidants than non organic tomatoes. Another study in The British Journal of Nutrition found there are up to 69 percent more antioxidants in organic foods versus non organic foods. The same researchers also found that organic foods contain lower levels of the toxic heavy metals and pesticides. This same journal found in another study that there are about 50 percent of beneficial omega-3 fatty acids in organic meat and dairy. So not only do organic foods contain less pesticides, they also are more nutritious for us and give us more antioxidants and essential vitamins.
â€œEpidemiologic studies, although sometimes contradictory, have linked phenoxy acid herbicides or contaminants in them with soft tissue sarcoma (STS) and malignant lymphoma; organochlorine insecticides are linked with STS, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), and leukemiaâ€ (PubMed.gov (Links to an external site.))
Pesticide consumption has effects on our bodies and although some may think they are fine not eating organic, this does not mean that they will not have health issues in their lives. Consuming pesticides can contribute to many health issues such as cancer, Alzheimerâ€s, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and even infertility. These pesticides are even more damaging to children than adults which is why it is a must to keep families eating organic. In a world full of so many carcinogenic chemicals that we cannot avoid I believe it is important to eat organic when possible and avoid as many harmful ingredients as possible. Eating organic makes it much easier to be sure that the foods you are consuming are not harmful to your health as there are strict rules and many ingredients banned from organic foods that are not banned from conventional industrial foods.
Dich, J, et al. â€œPesticides and Cancer.â€ Cancer Causes & Control : CCC, U.S. National Library of Medicine, May 1997, www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9498903 (Links to an external site.)
Pollan, Michael. The Omnivore’s Dilemma: a Natural History of Four Meals. Penguin Books, 2016.
Hari, Vani. Feeding You Lies: How to Unravel the Food Industry’s Playbook and Reclaim Your Health. Hay House, Inc., 2019.
Rebuttal and Question:
Logan states that the pesticides used in farming are harmful to our health and we are not able to simply wash pesticides off. However, pesticides are not only good for farming but also reduce potential danger in our food. Tremendous benefits have been derived from the use of pesticides in forestry, public health, and the domestic sphere. Also, Pesticides have been an integral part of the process by reducing losses from the weeds, diseases and insect pests that can markedly reduce the amount of harvestable produce. Whatâ€s more, pesticides control the disease. Pesticides are often the only practical way to control the insects that spread deadly diseases such as malaria, resulting in an estimated 5000 deaths each day.
Also, Logan claims when a food labeled as organic, it means that it contains at least 95% organic ingredient and the other 5% ingredients which are banned from organic food. Yet, is the word â€œorganicâ€ being used in the same way as â€œhealthyâ€? USDA organic rules are about the letter of the law, not its spirit. Food marketers, however, take advantage of public perceptions that “organic” implies spirit – sustainability and better nutrition. Companies that follow the rules can legitimately market highly processed foods as organic, taking advantage of their health aura to command higher prices. Therefore, the â€œorganicâ€ food we buy today, is not as organic as it labeled, but it is a tool for companies to make more money.
As I read the articles about organic food, I found it is not as organic as we thought before, however, it could be a better way for big companies to make money. Are the USDA rules really helpful to regulate organic food industry?
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