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Debate Score:30
Total Votes:36
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LordSkeptic(93) pic

Is the fear of being Offensive killing free speech?


Side Score: 23


Side Score: 7
6 points

The loony left brigade enjoyed limited success in their ongoing crazy P.C. crusade by having a number of publishing houses change their issues of the nursery rhyme;- 'Ba Ba Black Sheep', to Ba Ba Ba Sheep.

Their madcap campaign resulted in a major up-market British chain store, John Lewis, to standardize their boy--girls children's clothing labels.

Public speakers have to carefully scrutinize prepared speeches in case the left wing loony ''text inspectors'' pick up on some unintentional slight on the ever growing army of so called ethnic minorities, who are always positioned on the starting blocks ready to shout about their deep hurt and humiliation at some unguarded, but harmless remark which was made without malice.

The injured parties pain and suffering can always be annulled by crossing their palms with silver.

Side: Yeah

It is. The Left has a book of offensive sayings and "who can be offended by what" that is a mile long, and it morphs and mutates on a weekly basis. They'll even twist offenses to justify other offenses, and even disregard people who were on their "can be offended" list if they don't fall in line and vote Democrat. It's a dystopian, Orwellian, group think gone mad. It's an oppression olympics to see who can be the most offended, but the only way to enter said olympics is to vote Democrat. It's like a religious cult minus the god. It's the greatest form of bigotry in the West today. If you don't join their cult, they try to destroy you, demonize you, and if that doesn't work then hurt you or kill you by? "ANY MEANS NECESSARY". 1LYNXMPED3R006RTROPTP4CALIFORNIA-COULTER-e1493617841812.jpg

Side: Yeah
mrcatsam(503) Disputed
1 point

Stop picking on the left, will you? Personally, I think some things people think of offensive is because those people are being ignorant. For instance, they don't understand the definition of racism, so when someone says the word break, they freak out.

Side: No
3 points

You're going to just have to reform the Liberal religion mrcatsam and make it more moderate.

Side: Yeah
Amarel(3880) Clarified
2 points

so when someone says the word break, they freak out.

What's racist about the word break?

Side: Yeah
2 points

We must stamp out this 'Politically Correct' malarkey because a generation of people has emerged who really do believe that it is a real thing. They have been brainwashed from birth, and have been conned into accepting and adopting an anti-social concept, which can be mischievous at very least, or entirely evil when coupled with intent.

Political correctness, is a way for those bereft of wit and intelligence, to prevent us from saying what we mean in words that are easily understood. It is a cold, calculated and perfidious attempt to disrupt normality. The idiots who support it would have us believe that their cause is a just one too, but it is not. Only the warped, deluded and malicious machinations of the criminally insane could possibly adhere to such a doctrine in all seriousness.

It is a total corruption of logic, morality and reason, designed to have your thoughts remain trapped inside your head, and have you unable to express them as opinion, belief or truth. It offers no latitude to eloquence, creativity or imagination; it seeks only to confound, stifle and confuse, which is extremely amusing if you consider, as I do, that it usually comes from the minds of the mentally bewildered.

However, the practice of this dark art does reveal, of its exponents, certain psychopathic tendencies, which hopefully, will be offered up to public ridicule because they must truly believe themselves better and above everyone else.

My suggestion, for dealing with political correctness, is to shove it right up the very arse of its originator as soon as it appears, and if they are 'offended' by that, they can simply 'Go away.'

Side: Yeah
1 point

Political correctness, and the micro-aggression, crybully culture that has shaped a lot of our recent public discourse is predicated on 4 things.

- 1 - Content is less important than vocabulary.

- 2 - If someone says he/she is offended, then what was said (and often the speaker) must be innately offensive.

- 3 - People saying things you dislike have the power to irreparably damage you by doing nothing more than using words.

- 4 - Victims are automatically virtuous in proportion to how hurt they are, and deserve sympathy and power in direct proportion to their expressed victimhood.


By contrast, when I was growing up, the following basic assumptions were applied to discourse.

- 1 - What mattered was whether a statement was true, however it was phrased.

- 2 - What mattered was whether a person had kind intent. It was clearly understood that the damage of saying unkind things was borne primarily by the unkind SPEAKER. Assholes have to bear the burden of going through life as unhappy and lonely.

- 3 - Sticks and stones could break our bones, but words could never hurt us. This was because we were responsible for our own self esteem. If our egos were fragile enough to be vulnerable to unkind statements, that was the result of us not doing the hard work required to merit high self-esteem. Hurt feelings were a sign to try harder, do increasingly more difficult things, be "better" people (kinder, more virtuous, etc.)

- 4 - It was shameful to act like a victim, or to aggrandize weakness, or to bewail hurt feelings or even physical pain. It was admirable to meet unkind statements (or adversity of any kind) with humor or indifference.

When I was a teacher, in between my childhood and now, it was common for "aggrieved" kids to come to me and say, full of indignation, " X said (fill in statement which may or may not have been insulting.) to me."

My response was ALWAYS the same: "Is it true?"

If the kid said it was true, my response was that she/he had no complaint, but might want to think about changing.

If the kid said it was untrue, my response was that the kid should treat it as if the "offender" had said that 1+1=3, chalk it up to some people say untrue things to be unkind, and remember that the least effective way to deal with it is to reward the "offender" with the negative emotional reaction that was the obvious goal.

Side: Yeah
1 point

While the leftists, SJWs, and snowflakes are mandating much of the political correctness, they are not the only problem.

Even sane and rational people on both the left and the right have contributed by (I cannot believe I am actually writing this) being too concerned with being polite.

This is not due to the fear of "being offensive" but rather due to a truly kind desire not to offend, not to hurt people's feelings. I say it often that the vast majority of people I ever meet are people of good will.

Despite the far left insisting that everyone who voted for Trump is a racist, that the right is racist, etc., I find that actual racism is extraordinarily rare. Most people really want to get along happily and kindly with EVERYONE. As a result, we change what we say or how we say it.

True, some of this is for fear of being labeled, and losing jobs or economic opportunity. However, the vast majority of this is self-censorship for the sake of good manners, and because most people really do not want to say things that make people unhappy.

Example: People don't want to be rude, so we often refrain from saying the obvious truth that many poor people are poor because they squandered educational opportunities, freely made disastrously bad decisions (whether unprotected sex, drug use, criminal activity, etc.), or just did not work hard enough. Now the minute someone says this, they are accused of bigotry, victim-blaming, or simple meanness.

Example: Even when quoting others, or discussing the word nigger people almost always say "n-word", despite the fact that nobody is calling anybody a name or making a racist statement. This became standard somewhere between about 2000 and 2005. The result has been that a purely social courtesy has become standardized to the degree that anyone who even uses the word to explain that we should not call people "niggers" is likely to be characterized as a racist.

Example: Discussion of aspects of culture and real cultural differences, with discussion of statistically significant differences in average IQ between different gene pools, and with scientifically verified biological differences between the sexes. People avoided talking about things that for years because it is unkind to discuss characteristics that people cannot change. Now the minute a guy wants to discuss The Bell Curve at a university, there are riots and violence to ensure the speaking engagement is shut down.

This moral/manners drift that reset the standard is the result of completely voluntary restraint by everybody. While it is true that the legal standards have not changed, the informal social standards have, and that has extended into workplace regulations and campus policies.

Free speech is being destroyed by voluntary restraint from hurting people's feelings.

Side: Yeah
1 point

Here's the thing. I don't support hate, on either side. I don't think people should discriminate what other people do. It isn't our place to judge what other people believe or how they feel or the things they do. AS LONG AS THEY DON'T HATE AS WELL. It can be said on both sides. I think it is completely fine that someone has the right to say they are one gender or another. It isn't my place to say they can't. I don't think it's fair that I am forced to hide that I think it's wrong and against God's word. I shouldn't have to fear that people will call me hateful because I don't support same-sex marriage. It's not hate, I just don't believe in it. Do you know how often I hear people use my God's name in vain daily? People blatantly stomp on my beliefs, yet I get called names for being more conservative. People aren't fixing things. I understand that there are people saying cruel words and acting even worse, but hate is still hate. Whether you feel right or justified, IT IS STILL HATE. I wish more people would understand this.

Side: Yeah
marcusmoon(531) Clarified
1 point


It isn't our place to judge what other people believe or how they feel or the things they do. AS LONG AS THEY DON'T HATE AS WELL.

I don't even hold it against people when they hate, or even say hateful things. Why would anyone have the right to regulate anyone else's feelings. (I am not even sure we can regulate our own feelings.) People have a right to feel however they feel, want whatever they want, and say whatever they wish to say.

A bunch of self-righteous, entitled, hateful racists are fully within their rights when they boo when Mike Pence follows the statement "Black lives matter" with "Brown lives matter. White lives matter. All lives matter."

It actually makes no material difference in anyone's lives, except to make the hateful people bitter and frustrated. We can all chalk it up to stupid people being rude. People's feelings and beliefs are their own business.

Every person has the right to say what he/she feels and believes is necessary, even if that includes rude and obnoxious behavior. There is no law against being a hate-filled asshole, nor should there be.

By the same token, what people do matters. Nobody has the right to infringe on the rights, property, or physical beings of others. That is why we have laws against theft, vandalism, and violence, and that is why the laws apply equally to people who are hateful as to people who are not.

For the same reason neo-Nazis, the KKK & Co. Black Lives Matter, ANTIFA, and DAESH (ISIS) have no right to dictate (or penalize us legally for) what we think, feel or say, we have no right to regulate or legally punish them for their thoughts, feelings, or words. Freedom either applies equally to everybody or it will ultimately apply to nobody.

That does not mean we have to hang out with assholes.

Side: Yeah
1 point

YES, to be offended is to be resentful or annoyed, typically as a result of a perceived insult. (got the definition from a online dictionary, don't hate me :P) but when you are insulted you can retaliate, whether that be with spiteful words, or the preffered approach of rational arguing, but you should say what you want to say. the only exception I see is if you are at work for a private corporation that does not receive government funding and has a policy that includes no offensive speech.

Side: Yeah
1 point

I don't think so, I think if anything the anger at people being offended over every stupid little thing propagates offensive speech simply for the spite of it.

Side: No
0 points

Hello L:

Couple things..

If you read a few pages right here on THIS website, you'll see that people aren't afraid of offending anybody.. In fact, they LOVE it.

So, although free speech may be under attack, it's WINNING handily.


Side: No
outlaw60(12951) Clarified
2 points

SUPER STUPID have you ever heard of the 1st Amendment ? If i am not mistaken that is in the Bill of Rights !

Side: Yeah
excon(8563) Disputed
0 points

Hello poochy:

You've been told time and time again, that you have NO 1st Amendment rights on this website, but you'd rather remain ignorant..

Now, get this bone..


Side: Yeah
2 points


If you read a few pages right here on THIS website, you'll see that people aren't afraid of offending anybody.. In fact, they LOVE it.

Once again, I think you are right, but only to a point, and only under particular types of circumstances.

Saying something in person and publicly (e.g. at work, on TV, on YouTube, in a classroom) has different potential punishments than does writing something under a pseudonym on a site specifically established to be a venue for saying things that might offend people.

The lack of face-to-face accountability (as on this site or on Twitter) is why there is such a lamentable breakdown in manners and empathy on the internet (as on this site).

However, there are enough examples of people being crucified in the media and losing their jobs over tweets, that WE KNOW that offending strangers CAN ruin careers and play havoc in people's lives.

Otherwise, we would all use our legal names as our screen names on this site.

Side: Yeah
0 points

Oh please. Let me start by saying I strongly defend free speech, including even on this site I defend the right wingers and the trolls having the freedom to say their piece.

But let's be real, the act of filtering what you have to say into terms more widely accepted is not actually "killing free speech". You can still state your message. You can still take political positions others find audacious.

It's comparable to people who argue restricting an anti-tank rifle and ammunition from an ordinary citizen would be totally killing their right to bear arms. No. No it doesn't. They can still own other guns, even some very dangerous ones.

What we have here (and I'm not kidding) is the people most inclinced to extremist and hateful rhetoric trying to claim it's THEY who are the real victims. Utterly bogus.

Side: No
marcusmoon(531) Disputed
1 point


I think you are missing the day to day effect on ordinary people having ordinary conversations. This is not just about political speech or assholes screaming into megaphones at rallies.

What we have here (and I'm not kidding) is the people most inclined to extremist and hateful rhetoric trying to claim it's THEY who are the real victims.

Interesting. I think you are criticizing both the far left and the KKK & Co.

Even so, None of that has anything to do with fear of being offensive. It is rare for people to be fired or kicked out of college for saying hateful things apropos of the KKK or White Supremacists. That kind of rhetoric, and that kind of thinking is EXTREMELY RARE, and relegated to the fringes.


It's comparable to people who argue restricting an anti-tank rifle and ammunition from an ordinary citizen would be totally killing their right to bear arms. No. No it doesn't. They can still own other guns, even some very dangerous ones.


When we discuss fear of being offensive, micro-aggressions and prohibitions on "cultural appropriation" are what we are really dealing with. We are not talking about metaphoric bazookas, but rather pea shooters of speech.

Most of the time it has nothing to do with hate, or even belittlement.

People are getting fired, kicked out of academic institutions, etc. because of the insistence that if someone feels offended, then the statement was offensive. Moreover, there is no standard for what constitutes "offensiveness" that takes into account intent or damage.

We have a few VERY real problems.

- 1 - Lack of both a sense of humor and the ability to actually understand basic aspects of communication. This is a real problem if we want humor, irony, and allusion to have any place in discourse.

When a guy tweets "Sig Heil" to imply that someone else is being unduly autocratic and picky, and then the tweeter is fired for being amenable to White supremacy, we have the problem of unwillingness to get a completely harmless reference being used to financially damage someone under COMPLETELY FALSE PRETENCES.


- 2 - The restriction of the freedom to refer to anything that has racial content, or to acknowledge cultural differences by way of imitation, allusion, or humor (without risk to employment, etc.).

When Don Imus said of a sweaty women's basketball team, that they were some "nappy-headed 'ho's" all he was doing was using Black urban diction to call attention to the fact that the women were Black, working hard (sweaty, hence the nappiness) and women. There was no criticism, unflattering comparisons, approval of discrimination or unkindness in the remarks. Sure, it missed the mark of being funny, or being incisive sports commentary, but it was neither hateful nor unkind.

However, the mere fact that he acknowledged objective reality (including use of the urban vernacular) was designated racist.

This is even extended to imitating accents.

The problem here is that the ability to lightly and humorously comment on reality, and to engage in imitation or impromptu playacting as a form of communication are important ways to acknowledge and enjoy our differences. It is a way to deal with the subject matter without making it into something heavy or serious.

This is being ground under the authoritarian boot heal of political correctness, and reasonable fear of being fired, expelled, or physically attacked by some ANTIFA speech-Nazi..


- 3 - The catering to people's desire for attention as victims by letting them impose their standards on everyone else, regardless of how petty those standards are.

Worse yet, the supposed victim, not the speaker is the one who gets to

-interpret the comment

-decide what the speaker meant/intended

-pronounce what the speaker feels or believes.

Basically it puts the pettiest, pickiest, and least tolerant people in charge of speech standards.


This focus on whether or not something offends is limiting what well-meaning people can say in public, how they can say it, and whether they will be fired or expelled afterwards. It is really killing free speech.

Side: Yeah
-1 points

In the last few years it's just the opposite. Offensive free speech is spreading fear, most of it coming from our Presidents mouth! The WORLD is feeling the fear!

Side: No