Sunday, 12 June 2016

One Very Important Thought: Against Hung Su-chu (洪素珠) & J.M. Cole (寇謐將)

In his most recent article for The News Lens International describing the controversy over a horrible woman in Kaohsiung screaming at an old man to "go back to China", J.M. Cole makes a remarkable statement. He points out that Hung Su-chu's (洪素珠) views and behaviour, which was so aggressively and rudely expressed to the old man...
"...targeted a specific group and therefore has no claim to free speech."
If this statement is meant in a positivist, legal sense then it is false as Taiwan does not have the necessary hate speech legislation under which speech deemed to be targeted at a specific group could be prohibited.

If it is intended as a normative statement, i.e. that Ms Hung should not be entitled to defend herself on the right to freedom of speech, because certain categories of opinion should be outlawed, then it needs to be said - Cole has outed himself as an opponent of freedom of speech and a fundamentally illiberal, progressive authoritarian.

On the video itself, of course I agree that Hung Su-chu's behaviour and remarks toward the old man were wrong, wicked, aggressive and stupid. But that is my opinion. I do not think she and others like her should be prevented from expressing such views in public, only that we the public should be free to respond in kind - or not at all. What is important is that we have a choice and the freedom to make our own decisions and make up our own minds.

"If you can be told what you can see or read, then it follows that you can be told what to say or think."

Your life is your own, and nobody else can live it for you...

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