On my secular Free Speech blog Dave Alexander and Company, I often end up standing against the laws which punish hate speech. I’m not all that comfortable with social media companies monitoring and deleting hate speech. i disagree with labeling incidents as ‘hate crimes.’
I’m not in favor of hate, or hate speech. Unfortunately, the devil is in the details. Should we arrest people for racist rants, with no threat of violence? In the U.S., we don’t and shouldn’t. Are racist, anti-Islam, anti-Christian and anti-whatever statements reason for law enforcement to take notice? It depends. Is it a reason for an arrest? Hardly.
Actual calls for violence should and are illegal. Speech without threats of violence? They are illegal in lots of places.
Germany and France are both in a complex battle against Islamic fanatics, and their tools include hate speech laws. The UK and Canada also restrict speech in various ways, generally to “protect” ethnic, religious or cultural groups from offense. There will never be a football team in London called the “Braves.” Don’t tell a joke about a disabled kid in Quebec.
What about sin? I’m pretty sure we got the last word on this 2,000 years ago.
Matthew 5:27-28New International Version (NIV)
27 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’[a]28 But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
I’m sure it doesn’t take a biblical scholar to suggest that hate in your heart is equally sinful. Christians should encourage each other to be respectful in thought and word — and encourage the rest of the world to speak with respect about all people.
I don’t want the state enforcing that.