Commentary

Hate Speech Based on Political Orientation

In a way, all hate speech is a political tool and is directed at the political enemy. So why is political orientation missing from the list of hate speech targets?

Two uniformed employees were smoking outside a prestigious 5-star hotel in Budapest’s Castle district. One of the guys was aggressively hyper and bleached blond – let’s call him Thanos for now. His chef jacket was misbuttoned and stained. The other guy looked a bit uneasy but listened intently as Thanos explained his little views.

“If there’s one thing I would wipe off the face of Earth, it would be liberalism. And liberals. Every single one of them. Like this,” he said and snapped his fingers imitating Thanos, the villain from Disney’s latest genocidal blockbuster. 

Who doesn’t have a good genocidal fantasy from time to time, right? If only the wrong kind would disappear at the snap of a finger… The wrong race, the wrong ethnicity, the wrong religion or gender could be wiped out. The wrong wealth class, eye color, or musical taste. The wrong attitude to mean, to women, to animals, or to privacy. Wouldn’t it be nice of those who don’t work, don’t pay taxes, don’t believe, or don’t walk the line wouldn’t exist? If the haters wouldn’t exist? Those who disrespect Values, those who eat animals, those who deny climate change, those who live off welfare.

Every hatemongering is a collective affair, and therefore political. One group, one evil politician, one party, one regimes starts to incite hatred against a certain group, enemy or scapegoat, or both, and expresses disbelief how those traitors are still allowed to exist. And then they sit back and wait if the audience takes the hint and takes action. If not, they go at it themselves.

But ultimately, it is always political. Those who oppose to my power, those who oppose that we should rule, those who don’t submit should not be allowed to exist.

This is why I find it disturbing that hate speech laws (regardless of what they say should be done to hate speech) appear to be blind to hate speech against political enemies. Political opposition. Those, whose sin is to disagree that the autocrat should rule forever. Even though they are always targets.

fb hate speech

Facebook’s list of hate speech targets. We have social caste, but not ideology or political views

So when Facebook lists its list of possible hate speech targets, political views are ominously missing. Of course, this dumb list must be based on a similarly dumb law and only there for compliance. But what is someone supposed to do when article upon article appears with the unspoken conclusion: The opposition should be eliminated. The opposition is plotting to eliminate us. How can political opponents be still allowed to live? Traitors of the nation. They are working on our demise. They are pedophiles and migrant-huggers who want the wrong kind to out-breed the right kind. 

Anyone who fully believes these accusations and is a man of action might conclude that violence against the political opposition is moral duty and actual self-defense. And that is exactly what these articles suggest – not so subtly.

All those items of the hate speech list exist. But the ultimate reason anyone gets targeted is a them vs us logic. In other words, politics. Missing political views from that list is a lethal omission at best – a political sin at worst.

That liberal-hating little Thanos was just responding of years and years of hate speech – against people with certain political views.

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