1984: Thread

grarpamp grarpamp at gmail.com
Thu Sep 15 22:10:25 PDT 2022

Intolerance - Remain Silent Or Be Branded An Extremist

Authored by Bruce Wilds via Advancing Time blog,

It appears we are rapidly approaching or have reached the place where
we must remain silent or be branded an extremist. There is a growing
trend of intolerance. In such an environment it is little wonder that
many people have become less vocal and afraid to speak their mind. The
source of this is rooted in a blatant disregard for the opinions of
others by both those on the left and the right. Democracy as a form of
government is far from perfect. Its greatest weakness is rooted in the
ability of a small vocal group to force its opinions on others. Sadly,
this is not something that is going to rapidly go away.

In a recent speech akin to something you might have witnessed in
Germany or Italy before World War II President Biden demonized what he
called MAGA Republicans. Biden labeled this group of Americans as
dangerous extremists. The message was clear, anyone that expressed the
views bantered about by former President Trump could be marked as an
extremist. Those that do speak out under such a political framework
are now part of a group that law enforcement officials target and
might be inclined to place under tighter scrutiny or surveillance.

This growing fear of speaking out is not limited to America, we are
seeing it in countries that claim to be free across the world. The
tech giants and governments have been throwing fuel on the fire by
adding to the feeling retaliation is a fair response to those we
disagree with speaking their mind. The tech giants' effort to closely
watch, silence, and censor those not marching in line with their
desired narrative is a dagger in the heart of free speech. This effort
is apparent when we hear about small fringe groups outside mainstream
society threatening to block highways, shut down ports, and occupy
state capitols if things fail to go their way. It even extends to
harassing elected officials, we are hearing more threats from groups
vowing to hound and badger members of Congress or the judicial system
at their homes.

Governments Are Adding To The Fear

This started several years ago and ramped up when the term
"politically correct" moved front and center. In the minds of some
individuals if you say anything that they consider "incorrect" it
justifies a harsh response. It has now extended to declaring saying
something that could hurt the feeling of some individual or group
could be considered "hate speech." As a result of this growing
intolerance, people feel compelled to deny their opinions and remain

The United Nations has weighed in on this subject since hate speech
incites violence and undermines social cohesion and tolerance. It
claims such speech is nothing new, however, its scale and impact are
nowadays amplified by new technologies of communication. The impact of
hate speech cuts across numerous existing United Nations areas of
focus, from human rights protection, preventing atrocity crimes,
sustaining peace, promoting gender equality, and supporting children
and youth. The problem here is when hate speech is allowed to be
defined by the ears of the beholder.

Forcing Agreement Can Be Ugly

A sign of growing intolerance is seen in the mass arrest of nonviolent
protesters by governments. It is important we remember the
cornerstones of democracy are the  freedom of assembly and the right
to speak freely. When these are trampled upon for any reason, the
system is in danger of being cast aside.

This article is about the ability of a vocal minority to make people
so uncomfortable they become silent. It is about how we should be
appalled by those that justify violence, aggression, and force towards
those that simply disagree with them. It is about how the threat you
may be demonized if you say what you feel tends to breed silence.
Watching this unfold is leaving a sickening feeling in those valuing
free speech.

We should be alarmed by a survey taken by Cato Institute/YouGov that
found most Americans say "the political climate these days prevents
them from saying things they believe because others might find them
offensive". The survey indicated that 52% of Democrats, 59% of
independents, and 77% of Republicans now say they have political
opinions they are afraid to share. Most people do not enjoy
confrontations or being harassed and as a result, are self-censoring
themselves. With the free exchange of opinions and ideas being the
foundation of a free and healthy democracy the sign public discourse
is being destroyed does not bode well for our continued freedom.

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