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  KD MAGAZINE! 
Posted: Tuesday, November 29, 2005 - כ"ז בחשון תשס"ו
 
  Freedom to Hate
Rabbi Shea Hecht
About the Author

Thirteen-year-old twins, Lamb and Lynx Gaede of the Prussian Blue band, the Reverend Kevin Nunn of Lakewood, New Jersey, and Michael Jackson have all exercised their freedom of speech.

Lamb and Lynx Gaede, wearing
"Happy Hitler" T-Shirt.
Picture Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prussian_Blue_(American_duo) 
 
Being that the USA is a free country and upholds freedom of speech this shouldn't pose a problem. However, when the founding fathers established freedom of speech I doubt they meant the provocative and instigating hate speech that these people have used.

How much of what gets said under the title of freedom of speech is actually  someone expressing their opinion and how much of it is motivated by the need to incite others? Assuming that specific speech is hateful and provoking, should it be protected as free speech?

Thirteen-year-old, blue-eyed blond twins, Lamb and Lynx Gaede are being raised as white supremacists by their mother. With their mother guiding them, they are trying to spread the message of white supremacy with a new CD. Their songs mock minorities and praise Adolf Hitler and Rudolf Hess, his right-hand man.

Their mother offers no excuses for her daughters' behavior. She said she is raising them the way she sees fit and they have a right to say what they think. To me it would seem that the mother is abusing her freedom of speech by using her innocent girls to send out her message of hate toward minorities.  

The Reverend Kevin Nunn in Lakewood used his freedom of speech to write an article to the Asbury Park Press, lambasting the Jews of the Lakewood Jewish community for what he perceives as the preferential treatment they are afforded and their secluded ways.

The article is full of assumptions and falsehood. What was the purpose of Reverend Nunn's article? What kind of energy was he trying to create by writing it? Was he trying to make peace and ease a tense situation? 

Leaders within the Lakewood Jewish Community wrote a rebuttal to the article, stating that Reverend Nunn never approached them with his concerns about unity between the Lakewood neighborhoods.

I only wonder why Kevin Nunn refers to himself as a Reverend. One of the jobs of a leader - especially a religious leader is to create unity, which this article does not contribute to.

If Reverend Nunn's true motive would have been to promote peaceful coexistence, and not incitement of hate, he would have reached out to the Jewish community in an attempt to establish a relationship.

Michael Jackson is in financial hot water. He owes his lawyers money for fighting a court case successfully. In a taped phone call, regarding these money problems,  that has been aired by ABC, Jackson, called the Jews leeches and said they are the cause of all world problems.

Now perhaps Jackson's private conversation at home should not be judged so harshly, as many of us have conversations that we would rather were not publicized, however, for Michael Jackson this isn't the first time he's expressed such a hateful sentiment.

A few years ago, Jackson sang a song calling Jews negative names. At that time Jackson excused himself by saying the song was written to make a point that racism is wrong. The excuse was weak at the time, but the recently revealed private phone conversations drove home the point that the excuse was just that: a cover-up and an excuse. Michael Jackson is a hater. He uses the hate-filled speech for his own means - be it to spice up a song or get away with paying a bill.

One can and must use freedom of speech to condemn something when it is evil and immoral, however, many people exercising their right to ‘say what they think', ‘speak their mind', and ‘finally tell it as it is', use hate speech to cover another agenda. The founding fathers wanted this country to have freedom of speech so people can voice their opinion not to abuse that freedom by provoking or inciting others.

Hate speech should not be outlawed; ugly words of hatred expressed under the banner of freedom of speech should be protested vehemently.

Read more articles by Rabbi Hecht

 

 
     
 
 
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