Tuesday, September 13, 2005
My God's Great Enough to Take a Joke
If you hadn't heard, Britain has pending a Racial & Religious Hatred Bill that will institutionalize thin-skinned, thoughtless, reactionism and penalize mere opinion and satire as "hate speech." Let me note that, as in the above linked article, politicians are facile with rationalizations of how such restrictive legislation will NOT be used, but if the language of the law doesn't specifically exclude it, the law will inevitably be used in exactly the way promised against. (See Item 6, Senator Akaka's use of official apology to institute Hawaiian apartheid as one recent example.) This PC swath of legislation against hate which besets America, too, is all about the nanny state now turning mind-reader. We will meddle in all your private behaviors for your own good, and our new improved version judges you for your thoughts as well.
If you kill someone, it isn't enough anymore that murder's against the law, we have to administer further punishment if you had an unacceptable loathing in your heart and mind. Once I'm killed, I doubt it will matter to me whether it was a crime of passion or hatred. The punishment for stealing my freedom and potential should be based on the damage to me and society at-large, not on the killer's intent. This trend of considering an individual emotion's over uniform mores of peace and civility, alleged intent over concrete actions, is pervasive, pernicious addle-brained nonsense that is a blight upon free-thinking individuals everywhere.
From comedians to church leaders and sensible non-hysterics everywhere, many people who believe healthy psyches and societies shouldn't perish under jokes or criticism oppose this nightmarish, intrusive legislation. One result was the following contest, The Laugh Judgement, where 4,000 people voted on 700 religious jokes to determine the funniest and most offensive for public performance.
Keep it up, ya'll. There is no freedom where thoughts and speech are abridged, and life's unbearable without laughter.