Richard Stengel, a frequent contributor on MSNBC, a former editor of Time magazine, and the State Department’s undersecretary for public diplomacy and public affairs in the Obama administration from 2013 to 2016 wrote this embarrassing, anti-free speech screed.
1. In the past I have criticized newspapers and other publications for publishing irresponsible opinion pieces. This time, I want to thank and praise the Washington Post. Either intentionally or inadvertently, it has performed a public service by using its op-ed pages to expose the hypocrisy, intellectual bankruptcy, ethics ignorance and relentless totalitarian rot of their own ideological compatriots.
2. I might say the same about Stengal, but he really seems to think that he is making a persuasive case. Imagine: a man whom President Obama and his Democratic administration trusted as a high level State Department official can make an argument like this…
Why shouldn’t the states experiment with their own version of hate speech statutes to penalize speech that deliberately insults people based on religion, race, ethnicity and sexual orientation?
Why, Richard? Oh, gee, I don’t know…maybe because “insult” is a completely subjective standard? Perhaps because Massachusetts, Vermont,California, and Oregon might decide that arguments against climate change cant is hate speech, like Holocaust denial? Maybe because the 14th Amendment prohibits states from abridging the Bill of Rights? Continue reading