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Featured Should RF take stronger action against hate threads?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by loverofhumanity, Mar 14, 2020.

  1. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    With the Anniversary of the NZ massacre being commemorated, findings are that hate speech online has been a major contributor to many of such crimes.

    Should freedom of speech include the right to demonise or infer evil to mass populations of any group?

    There are posts that will take a verse out of context attempting to impute violence to an entire religion who’s population numbers 1.7 billion adherents rather than attribute crimes specifically to those who committed them.

    I believe to try and indicate or attribute to an entire religion the judgement of violence is but a prejudicial veiled attempt to demonise, discredit and incite hatred against Muslims or any group in general under the guise of ‘freedom of speech ‘.

    I believe in view of massacres like the one in NZ that forums such as RF need to be far more vigilant at identifying those threads which have an agenda of discrediting and demonising a particular group as this could lead to hostility one day.

    It doesn’t mean we can’t have our say but that freedom of speech needs to be used responsibly and we need to all be vigilant that we don’t inadvertently create hostility towards any group of people.

    I see some threads where some groups are-being singled out with no real purpose except to discredit and demonise them not constructively share and or learn.

    I myself believe there’s a line we should all never cross and that is to impute negative sentiments via generalisation methods towards any group of people small or large even DIR.

    RF are an incredible forum with great moderators who are reasonable and just but in light of recent events I’m appealing for greater vigilance of threads seeking to demonise any group of innocent people.
     
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  2. TransmutingSoul

    TransmutingSoul One Planet One People Please
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    I say yes, no prejudices, or hate based on those prejudices, should be supported by RF or anyplace.

    It may be our July trip to Sydney may not happen David, I was looking forward to a visit! :):oops::D

    Regards Tony
     
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  3. icehorse

    icehorse Veteran Member
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    how about ideas? can we criticize ideas?

    there is an ESSENTIAL distinction here.
     
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  4. ChristineM

    ChristineM "Be strong" I whispered to my coffee.
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    I think RF mods do a great job of catching hate threads and deleting them very quickly.

    So much so that unless you catch one before deletion you never see a hate thread.

    So perhaps you can provide few links to threads that have got you so concerned or better still, report them to the mods. If they really are hate threads you can pretty much guarantee they will be dealt with as a matter of urgency.
     
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  5. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    As long as it’s not intended to demonise directly or by inference there’s no harm. In RF I believe as well as criticise ideas we all have a duty and responsibility to protect the innocent from being treated unjustly.
     
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  6. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    Hi Christine. Yes definitely. It’s very easy to be critical but I believe that basically people are good and that most are well meaning.
     
  7. Terry Sampson

    Terry Sampson Well-Known Member

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    What???!!! Shut down the ''anti-trinitarians"??? Don't do that. I just put 'em on "Ignore" when they get goofy.
     
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  8. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    The issue with hate speech is real. There's obvious hate speech which most of us can agree on.

    The problem comes in when we get to a grey area. Is something perfectly fine criticism which is part of free speech and which we should uphold. Or has it crossed over the line into hate speech.

    Here's an example:

    Pretty clear hate speech: Islam is evil and we need to take effective action against all Muslims.

    Normal criticism: I see Muslims use Sura xxx and yyy as an excuse for terrorist activities. How else can a Muslim interpret those Suras?

    Normal criticism: too many Muslims use the Quran as an excuse to become terrorists. Or why are so many Muslims using the Quran as a reason for terrorism?

    Grey area to me: I read the Quran and it exhorts Muslims to violence. It's grey to me because the person is basing criticism on how he read the Quran which to me is proper. But he's making a hasty judgement by not asking a true not rhetorical question about how Muslims themselves read the Quran and what meaning they take from those Suras.
     
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  9. Dawnofhope

    Dawnofhope Veteran Member
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    It is a challenging environment on RF at times with diverse perspectives from around the world. I believe we need to find the balance between freedom of speech and so called hate speech. Criticising a religion is allowed and some religions merit more criticism than others. However we need to ensure that criticism is constructive and doesn’t inflame prejudices, racism and religious bigotry. We all have responsibility to ensure what we post is constructive as opposed to promoting animosity.
     
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  10. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue Twilight, not bright nor dark, good nor bad.

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    Things like direct threats and calls for bodily harm and/ or damage to property ought to be subject for strict moderation.

    Vilifying a religion, opinion, or belief ought not to qualify imo. There won't be much of a forum left if it is moderated into Teletubbie standards.
     
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  11. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    Youmake some good points.

    On many forums and on this one also I’ve seen quoted out of context ‘kill them wherever you find them’ as a way of propagating Islam and Muslims are evil. But to people who have studied the Quran and Muslims they know the context of that passage and that’s not what it means. Moderators also may not be educated in Islam so cannot detect that this is an attempt at demonisation because the proper context is unknown to them.

    So then it is largely being left to uneducated posters fo pass judgement and as they too don’t know the context they will agree that Islam is violent and evil on that one verse taken out of context.

    Some of us know the Quran well and so can explain this but not before it has done a lot of damage and given uneducated people a bad impression of Islam and Muslims so innocent people have had judgement unjustly passed against them simply because one and all are ignorant of the Quran and what it’s speaking about in that passage because the poster doesn’t include passages that explain the context deliberately so as to demonise or is just copying and pasting.

    The result is unfounded prejudice and hatred are being fomented using freedom of speech. When people start blowing up Mosques then the penny drops that worldwide on the Internet especially, demonisation has been taking place on a large scale.

    I remember on Jihad Watch, Robert Spencer used ‘kill them wherever you find them’ as to brainwash his audience that Islam is violent but when I posted 2:190 which says do not attack unless you are attacked first then people expressed surprise that it was the opposite of what they were being told.

    People with an agenda will quote that verse and others without the context and the uneducated audience doesn’t question it and the forum moderators too often don’t see the insidious nature of these attacks on 1.7 billion Muslims so let it go.

    I’m not a Muslim but believe in justice and I don’t want to see innocent people killed like in NZ a year ago and as a dedication to those people this thread is to try and create more awareness about how those with an agenda to demonise Muslims sometimes use freedom of speech and the ignorance of moderator and poster alike in online forums to do so.
     
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  12. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    What about defamation of character? What about demonisation of an entire religion?
     
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  13. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    One more thought I just had. The world-wide COVID-19 outbreak is overriding this issue and many others. It sure seems that way to me as the news is now obsessed with the pandemic driving other issues off the table.
     
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  14. MonkeyFire

    MonkeyFire Well-Known Member

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    My religion sees DOUBT as a anti-hero with anti-Christ capabilities, but does not suffer, or torment others. A true negative meant to serve in darkness. Actually finding purpose, and bringing balance to the force. Where God is passive, the devil is non-violence like a little anti-Christ for his father HATE, the Devil who looks out for the poor and weak of hell, anchored to his own hell by his happiness.
     
    #14 MonkeyFire, Mar 14, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2020
  15. danieldemol

    danieldemol Well-Known Member
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    The RF moderators are currently doing a great job of moderating hate speech and I applaud them for it. It is morally wrong to (genueinely) demonise a religion (as opposed to calling something which is wicked wicked), but one can't effectively legislate against it as is too subjective to say what constitutes demonisation and what is simple statement of facts.
     
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  16. Twilight Hue

    Twilight Hue Twilight, not bright nor dark, good nor bad.

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    Well to paraphrase a biblical quote, "Ye should know by their fruits", I would think most sensible people would be able to tell the difference.

    I tend to use terms like "collectively" which would infer that the group by large is the subject of criticism and not every single individual within their group past their affiliation with it.

    For example, I still say Islam collectively is a violent and barbaric religion. And rightfully so given all the incidents in the world attributed to the religion. Similar to the crusades that were conducted in the middle ages by Christians.

    However, I also would say that a number of individual Muslims are doing their best to change things for the better in hoping of removing the stigma that has caused the religion to be thrown into that light and are attempting to show that Islam is not beyond redemption as a peaceful religion.


    Ahmadiyya Muslims seem to be a good example of which have not been noted for violence and brutality but have been ostracized by mainstream Islam.

    Shia, although not perfect, also seems to have a better reputation than other mainstream sects of islam.
     
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  17. Laika

    Laika Well-Known Member
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    I don't think I'm denying credit to anyone by saying I have probably been one of the most out-spoken supporters of an "extremist" ideology on the site over the years and I have raised subjects that are often controversial from time to time. Here's a list of ones I can remember:

    Voluntary Servitude: Freedom is Slavery?
    The ethics of militant and state atheism
    The uses and abuses of Nihilism
    Communism and Crimes against humanity
    Santa is Fake News
    Ban the Bible and the Qu'ran?
    Anti-Christmas Thread
    Defending Stalin?
    Degenerate Art and Cultural Pessimism
    Anti-Liberalism
    Why is Social Darwinism a Pseudo-Science?
    Flat Earth DIR?
    Nationalist/Far-Right subforum?

    It is possible to work within the forum rules to discuss extreme and controversial topics and to do so in a semi-constructive way. But the experience is punishing even without moderation or deliberately violating forum rules. You face overwhelming opposition and that can be emotionally very draining. The site tends to self-select members who broadly support liberal political and religious views. Conservatives are a very vocal minority.

    Overall, RF has had it's share of Fascist, Nazi and Communist members, but they've either left or become more aligned with the forum's overall cultural tolerance. (I've tried to leave, but simply got more used to being here). When we are talking about extremist ideologies, we are talking a dozen members at most. Of those, few are regular and active contributors.

    So I would make the case that RF does not have a serious issue with proponents of extremist political or religious view points. We have almost no "authoritarians" according to the political compass threads we have, and very few members expressing conservative politics, or religious and social perspectives. The forum is quite homogeneous and conformist in its outlook at times and it can be very uncomfortable to stray outside of the box. If RF has a problem with hate speech, it generally isn't coming from the far-left (communists) or the far-right (fascists/nazis) because they are simply wildly out-numbered. Nor is the site conducive to expressing socially conservative views against women, the LGBT community, ethnic or religious minorities.

    This site is essentially a liberal hot spot and introducing rules on hate speech would only reinforce the conformist tendencies of the forums. Aside from a handful of Trump voters, there is little opposition to the liberal consensus. restrictions on hate speech would only make it harder for members with dissenting view points to meaningfully contribute.
     
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  18. Cooky

    Cooky Veteran Member

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    But JW's and SDA'S religion is based largely in part on demonizing the pope and the Church as the Whore of Babylon. Without them being allowed to do that, it restricts them from being free to express their faith.
     
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  19. George-ananda

    George-ananda Advaita Vedanta, Theosophy, Spiritualism
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    Labeling a thread a 'hate thread' is most often a judgment call. Let's error on the side of free speech.
     
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  20. Bird123

    Bird123 Well-Known Member

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    God grants total free speech. I vote to copy God.

    Let's think about this for a few minutes. When a hateful person shows up, we all have an incredible opportunity. What happens when the person hating receives Unconditional Love from the diversity of so many people pointing them in the right direction? Perhaps we can all shine so much Reason,Logic and Unconditional Love in their eyes that this light blinds them from hating others.

    I ran into a christian preacher who was teaching the parishioners to avoid people he claimed to be evil. How can people who choose evil choose anything else unless they have good people around them pointing the way through their example and words?

    So often we try to avoid hurt, conflict and drama and yet that is where all the learning takes place. Many do not realize the power we each possess. Sometimes something as little as a few words can change so many through the generations. We can all make the world a better place.

    Problems will never be solved trying to avoid them. I say more need to get involved, not less. Further, the diversity of ideas along with the effort to change, move forward and learn from the journey can bring about solutions that will bring better resolution for all.

    That's what I see. It's very clear!!
     
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