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“hate groups” exist in the USA because this is a free country. In places without our commitment to freedom and human rights those type of groups would have been suppressed by the government.

Edit: just to be clear some of your other points are fair although I find the “Indian reservations” a bit dated - they are treated as local sovereigns (e.g. casinos, being allowed to violate state level hunting regulations) and are even now being allowed to expand their territory in some places .




The US "commitment to freedom and human rights" rings a bit hollow, IMHO. If you look at western Europe, free speech is restricted a little more, so "hate groups" are illegal. Yet in pretty much all other aspects, these countries are better at ensuring human rights for their citizens.

I'm fairly sure that the US is lagging due to historical reasons. Without a war like Germany experienced, there is too much resistance towards a "clean cut" elimination of racism, so you get an exponentially slow decay instead.


So Germany, Japan (and other countries that experienced destructive wars) have eliminated racism?


Well, eliminated is a bit strong, as you can never eliminate an ideology.

The main point, however, is that Europe has shown over a span of several decades that restricting hate speech a) does not lead to any slippery slope where other forms of speech are restricted and b) that restrictions of hate speech are effective at reducing racism in society.


> The US "commitment to freedom and human rights" rings a bit hollow, IMHO.

Another example of this is how many governments we overthrew during the Cold War, and how many dictators we installed in their place.


> If you look at western Europe, free speech is restricted a little more

I wouldn't call that "free speech".


According to the Cato institute, the most free countries in the world are mostly in Western Europe:

> The jurisdictions that took the top 10 places, in order, were New Zealand, Switzerland, Hong Kong, Australia, Canada, the Netherlands and Denmark (tied in 6th place), Ireland and the United Kingdom (tied in 8th place), and Finland, Norway, and Taiwan (tied in 10th place). Selected countries rank as follows: Germany (13), the United States and Sweden (17), Republic of Korea (27), Japan (31), ...

So, yes, I would call what they have free speech, in any meaningful use of the word.

Source: https://www.cato.org/human-freedom-index-new


Hmph. Citing a libertarian organization founded by, of all people, Charles Koch and funded by the Koch brothers. [1]

1. https://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Cato_Institute


I don't think the prevalence of hate groups is necessarily related to any countries' commitment to freedom and human rights.

Virtually everyone outside of the hate groups wishes they didn't exist, but it's precisely the commitment to freedom that makes it hard to shut them down.

Is this a human rights issue? Again, we agree that we don't want these groups to exist, but I don't think there's ever been a "right to not have people hate you". I don't see a direct line from human rights to lack of hate groups.


Germany implemented laws that forbid holocaust denial for example. The US has no such laws pertaining to its groups.


>“hate groups” exist in the USA because this is a free country. In places without our commitment to freedom and human rights those type of groups would have been suppressed by the government.

Looking at the history of the KKK, for instance, I find this assertion frankly laughable. The KKK flourished then withered as a pretty direct measure of its government support, not because of some worthy indifference to the organisation. And if you stand up against them, as the Panthers did, well even the NRA will suddenly support gun control.


>Looking at the history of the KKK, for instance, I find this assertion frankly laughable. The KKK flourished then withered as a pretty direct measure of its government support, not because of some worthy indifference to the organization.

Which level of government are you talking about? The KKK flourished when local and state government turned a blind eye. In both cases the Feds eventually stepped in.

> And if you stand up against them, as the Panthers did, well even the NRA will suddenly support gun control.

The NRA of the 1960s is not the NRA of today. You may as well compare the 1890 democratic party with the 1950 democratic party.


> The KKK flourished when local and state government turned a blind eye. In both cases the Feds eventually stepped in.

The KKK flourished when it was a major power in directing local, state and federal (including Presidential nomination) politics of one major party and generally had a blind eye turned to it by the other, at any level where that party had any influence. There wasn't just s “blind eye” from government as a whole, it was a major active player.


>The KKK flourished when local and state government turned a blind eye.

Local and state governments weren't turning a blind eye back then, they were turning a hooded one.

>The NRA of the 1960s is not the NRA of today.

I'd agree with you there, while they were just as politically insidious, it seems that back then they had some kind of remaining tether to reality.


Or the KKK of the 1960s with the KKK of today.


> And if you stand up against them, as the Panthers did, well even the NRA will suddenly support gun control.

.. lets not pretend that the Panthers were some mild group either. A group of people advocating along race lines for the end of capitalist exploitation of their race and releasing of all incarcerated people of their race walking around with fully automatic weapons 'for defense' is not exactly 'moderate'

which is not to say that i do not understand the rationale behind the group given the zeitgeist (and really, why do i need to put a parenthetical here)


>lets not pretend that the Panthers were some mild group either.

I wasn't. Gun control isn't usually brought in against mild groups.

>walking around with fully automatic weapons 'for defense'

To be fair, the opposition had previously bombed them from the air. Having automatic weapons is usually overdoing it for defense, but if your opponent can manage a ramshackle air force, then it may be warranted.




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