Well, yes, they can

Yakou Méïté: ‘People think they can say what they want, even if it’s racist’

People do indeed get to say what they want even if its racist. It’s called free speech.

They also have to put up with the reaction to what they’ve said – say, being derided as racists – but that is the way the whole thing’s supposed to work.

17 comments on “Well, yes, they can

  1. three direct messages from an account named “saw_pyay_htoo” registered in Singapore were sent to the Ivory Coast forward

    A whole 3 messages?

    “Kick it Out issued a “call to action” to social media companies to clamp down on online abuse.”

    3 messages?

    Racism is bad, m’kay, but it sounds like the problem is about as solved as it’ll ever be. You don’t have people throwing bananas on the pitch or racist chanting from the terraces like in the 80s.

    I’m guessing the people at Kick it Out have mortgages to be paid, though.

  2. “People do indeed get to say what they want even if its racist”

    There are limits on this, racist football chants being one of them. On the other hand there are certainly statements that are intended as, or possible to interpret as, racist which wouldn’t get caught by hate speech regulations.

  3. What if the reaction to said free speech is being kicked out of your job because a small mob tweets angrily at your employer? Or you’re a lecturer at a supposedly liberal college, and a small group of students take umbrage with your remarks and manage to get you fired?

    Suffering the consequences of free speech is all very well in theory, but in practice most people don’t want to lose their livelihoods.

  4. ‘also subjected to online discrimination’

    Once again, Guardian subs show they don’t know the meaning of common words.

  5. I think there do need to be restrictions on freedom of speech.
    For instance, slander, hate speech, death threats, bullying, sexism, racism, homophobia, xenophobia.
    There do need to be some restrictions on freedom of speech in a civilized society, or people could bully people to suicide, or slander people, or stand outside someone’s house shouting abuse, and death threats.
    There needs to be a balance between freedom and control in a civilized society.

  6. @MyBurningEars

    ‘There are limits on this, racist football chants being one of them. ’

    Not a free speech issue, property rights issue.

    My house (football ground) my rules. The only person who has freedom to say what they like or what others say on their property, is the owner of that property.

  7. Mr McRush

    Why do homophobia, sexism, racism, and xenophobia, of all the means of hating others, need special mention?

  8. “Tony McRush” is another troll– prob the same idiot as “Susan Scottish” –he has the same hatefilled-feeble-mind-trying-to-sound-reasonable tone about his writing.

    Possibly Meiac still on his meds for the time being.

    NB-Shouting outside peoples houses–which the fucking left are up to near constantly–should be classed as a breach against your right to the “quiet enjoyment” of your premises.

  9. ” “I’ve been here for three years and feel half-English now,” says Méïté.”

    I’ve eaten quite a few curries, so I must be a fully-fledged Bangladeshi by now.

  10. People do indeed think they can say what they want, even if it’s racist.
    Just today I was browsing posts containing the hashtag #whitepeople on Twitter, and I thought many were pretty racist. I wonder if anyone would be interested if I wanted to complain?

  11. Fifty-odd years ago people could say what they wanted even if it was racist but men (at least in Glasgow) they knew would get a bloody nose if they insulted someone’s wife/mother/daughter.

  12. “I think there do need to be restrictions on freedom of speech.”

    A tennis ball in everyone’s mouth?

    We rather enjoy not having someone with a gun looking over us at all times.

    There may be some consequences for what you say, but you can damn well say it.

    Restrictions on freedom of speech is evil. I think you are wrong, Mr Ecks. He’s not a troll, trying to stir things up; this turd believes the evil he speaks.

  13. I never knew you we had the right to walk the streets being abusive to people. I thought there was a law about that.

    My bad.

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