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The Courts Government News Your Rights Online

"Nuremberg Files" Decision Overturned 569

Posted by michael
from the i-may-not-agree-with-what-you-say dept.
PeterMiller writes "ABC News is running a story on a US federal appeal court that threw out a record $109 million verdict against anti-abortion rights activists. From the article: 'If defendants threatened to commit violent acts, by working alone or with others, then their [works] could properly support the verdict,' Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski wrote. 'But if their [works] merely encouraged unrelated terrorists, then their words are protected by the First Amendment.' My question is, what does this do to every other lawsuit claiming a website, movie, video game or song lead someone to a violent act?" Readers may recall that this case involved an anti-abortion website which published the names and addresses of doctors who provided abortion services, and cheered whenever one of them was killed. Our previous stories are here and here. The Appeals Court's opinion reviews the history of the case, and the finding that the statements on the website were not true threats under U.S. law and were thus protected speech. There used to be a number of mirrors of the site available - most of them seem to have disappeared, but this one is still up, minus the lists of doctors.
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"Nuremberg Files" Decision Overturned

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  • Good point. There should be a mod category for "Where the hell did that come from?"
  • You misunderstood the logic. The court is drawing a line between TELLING someone to commit a crime and merely providing information that was then later used to commit a crime. If the website in question had ever said "Go kill these guys" THEN it would be in the same class as Charles Manson.
  • and I totall disagree with you - the only reason the pro-lifers are willing to go so far as to kill someone they disagree with is BECAUSE they are fundamentalist christians.

    That's preposterous. Millions of people have killed for less reasons when they weren't fundies; I'd be willing to bet that most of the people who killed abortion doctors didn't do so because they opposed abortion, but rather because they were angry at the doctor for some other reason.

    I wouldn't be surprised if some of them were pro-aborts who were angry at the doctor for performing an abortion on their wife or daughter without their "permission" or something -- or who were shocked at the grief trauma their wife was going through after they (the husband) forced her to get an abortion.

    Forced abortions are all too common. Too many people still see abortion as less stigmatising than pregnancy.

    -Billy

  • All your rudeness aside:

    I agree. Even if my posting were entirely correct (and I assert that it almost certainly is), it FAR from excuses the fundies who HAVE killed abortion doctors. In fact, it EMPHASISES their guilt. They're blatant hypocrites, and my message DEFINITELY was in error in not calling them on that.

    Now, put your rudeness back in:

    I disagree. I'm not spewing shit, I'm telling it like it is. The simple fact that you hate christians and disagree with them doesn't make them ALL murderers, and it doesn't remove any guilt from anyone else.

    Back On Topic: I believe that this judgement was a mistake. "Free Speech" is intended to be political speech, not violence or personal slams; this ruling does NOTHING to protect free speech. I believe the list was properly shut down, since it was NOT a political expression, but rather was a reckless endangerment and a violation of privacy.

    -Billy
  • by Phillip Birmingham (2066) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:17PM (#332647) Homepage
    This was fought tooth and nail by that bastion of non-partisian free speach advocates the ACLU right?

    I don't know -- should we go see what they say, or just keep guessing?

    From a press release concerning the original verdict, which you'd have found if you had let a thought get past the medulla oblongata, and actually gone to look: [aclu.org]



    The ACLU of Oregon believes that the safety of the physicians and clinic workers who provide abortion services can be protected without compromising the fundamental protections of free speech guaranteed by the First Amendment. Our involvement as a friend of the court in this case has been designed to help the court find the appropriate line between protected and unprotected speech under our Constitution. We will continue to play that role as this case moves forward.

    ...

    Prior to trial, we argued that the Court should have adopted a stricter constitutional standard in this case to distinguish between unlawful threats and protected speech. We still believe the jury should have been asked to determine whether the evidence showed that the defendants intended to threaten these abortion providers.


    BTW -- there's no "a" in "speech" and only two "m"s in "amendment". Hope this helps.

  • Actually it was the Nazi Party who wished to march in Skokie back in '76 I believe.

    The reason why it is more signifigant that the Nazi Party wanted to march and not the KKK is because Skokie is a heavily Jewish populated suburb of Chicago.
  • "Call your local Police or FBI office and tell them you plan on killing the President. Then count how long until you door is busted down and you're hauled off in handcuffs. "

    Oh heck just send an email to whitehouse.gov

    It takes about three days before they come to talk with you.

    When I was working at a University back in around '94 or so we had a high school kid come into the public labs and sent off such an email.

    Silly kid didn't think that the public labs have video cameras in them... He got a stern lecture by the secret service, but they didn't haul him away in handcuffs.
  • If any websites could be said to encourage terrorism, it's these sites. I'm pro-life myself, but terrorism just plain goes too far. I don't see how the Appeals Court could possibly be blind enough to see that this site wasn't encouraging violence against these doctors.

    And even if they weren't encouraging violence against said doctors, their lists were a marked privacy violation. I very much doubt those doctors were asked if their personal information could be put up on the Web. That's another count against it, perhaps far more damning.

    However, I suppose there's an upside to this. If this one managed to get through the court system, then I don't see how any site could fail to get through it in the future. Or, to put it another way, if they'll defend this, they're likely to defend anything.
    ----------
  • Those calling themselves "anti-abortion" have defined themselves by what they are against - the act of abortion.

    Those calling themselves "pro-choice" have defined themselves by what they are for - the right of a woman to choose whether or not to carry a child to term.

    "Pro-life", while not inherently descriptive, has become shorthand for "in favor extending the legal definition of human life as beginning at conception, and of extending the attendant rights and protections to the zygote/embryo/fetus at that point". I'm not a fan of this term, because it's less precise than "anti-abortion".

    I could see the term "pro-abortion" being used accurately to describe those who favor the act of abortion itself - the only example I can think of would be forced abortion/sterilization that has taken place in parts of China as population control measures.

    Of course, many from each side like to tar the other with terms like "pro-abortion" (inaccurate insofar as "pro-choice" != "pro-abortion"; it's not about the act of abortion but about the decision to carry a child to term belonging to the woman carrying it.), "anti-life" (who would describe themselves as "anti-life"? This is just the classic semiotic game of attempting to redefine your opponent's position through loaded words with multiple connotative/denotative meanings.), or "anti-choice" (a favorite of some on the "pro-choice" camp. Technically accurate, inasmuch as an abortion ban removes choice, but similarly loaded as in the last example).

    I'm wasting a lot of wind here, so I'll recap:
    • anti-abortion = opposed to the act of abortion
    • pro-choice = supporting a woman's right to choose whether or not to carry a child in her own body to term
    • pro-abortion = in favor of the act of abortion, advocating the act itself

    Make sense?

    -Isaac

  • Whilst I agree wholeheartedly with the concept of free speech, surely the line has to be drawn when that speech includes personal information, such as somebody's address ?

    This would be called a phone book.

  • George W. Bush is a murderer, having ordered air strikes that killed innocent people in Iraq. He lives at 1600 Pennslyvania Avenue, Washington DC.

    Okay, now if anybody kills Bush, I'm partly responsible, because I said that he's a murderer and where he lives, right?

    Steven E. Ehrbar
  • Look at Switzerland, every male over 18 is required by law to have an assault rifle in the house, and they have a really low crime rate

    Do you have any statistics to back this claim up, or even a place that will tell me if the gun ownership is really a law? This smacks of an Urban Legend.

  • Yea, I did a bit of digging, and found out a few interesting facts. Yes, they are required by law to own a gun, and 75 rounds of issued ammunition. Its checked every year. BUT, even given that law, 18% of Swiss households have a gun in them, compared to 29%. Odd...
  • > He loves you and wants to have a relationship with you.

    Prove it.

    --
  • Do you think I care about your works of fiction?
    --
  • Prove there isn't a rhinocerous in the other room.
    --
  • Japanese cinema is loaded with violence, yet there is little overall violence in Japan.

    Indeed. And there doesn't seem to be an increase in tentacle sex crimes in Japan, even though tentacle rape hentai is readily available.
  • by kzinti (9651) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:12PM (#332684) Homepage Journal
    Much as I despise these right-wing wackos, I love my First Amendment even more. So I'm pleased that the court would defend it.

    Something more that interests me is what happens when you consider this ruling in light of another one covered here on /. not too long ago in this story:

    http://slashdot.org/yro/01/02/26/1622248_F.shtml [slashdot.org]

    And the CNET article referenced from the Slashdot discussion:

    http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1005-200-4930756.html? tag=nbs [cnet.com]

    The gist of the story is that the high school students published satire aimed at his high school principal on his own time, and on a web site entirely independent of the school. When the school district tried to punish the student, he sued and won. The court ruled that the school had no jurisdiction over the student's speech rights as practiced on his own time and his own equipment. And rightly so. You high school kids still have some speech rights in the eyes of the courts.

    Now consider today's case, in which the court said that the anti-abortion speech is protected, including the "hit lists", so long as the speech doesn't directly threaten to commit violent acts. Wow. Juxtapose this case against the high school case from some weeks ago and tell me what you see.

    How long is it going to be until we hear about some high school kid publishing a hit list on his personal web site? I thinking here of a list a teachers, administrators, bullies, and the like... of course, this kind of thing is probably happening already, but now it's protected. Are more kids going to start doing this kind of thing? How will the school districts react? Will they continue to suspend and expel... or will they just call the police?

    It's a fascinating situation. It's great that speech rights on the Internet are seeing some protection, especially for students, but I'm wondering how these new protections are going to be interpreted by today's high school kids, and what the repercussions are going to be when they start pushing the envelope with them.

    --Jim
  • I applaud the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals for this courageous decision. It must have been very hard for them to separate their disgust for the Neandertals who run the site from their respect for the principles of the First Amendment. I don't think that the courts can make value judgments on speech without degenerating into the worst form of censorship.

    The cure for bad speech is truly more speech. This ruling will make it much harder to quash unpopular or politically incorrect speech, which is great. Kudos, again, to the 9th Circuit!

    thad

  • And whilst I'm burning Karma anyway... anyone notice the headline contradicts the story?

    Headline: Court: Abortion Threats OK

    From 2nd paragraph: "If defendants threatened to commit violent acts, by working alone or with others, then their [works] could properly support the verdict," Cricuit Judge Alex Kozinski wrote (typo theirs, judge describing why the verdict against the site was not supported)

    Well, which is it? Does the AP writer have an agenda here? That's a pretty big mistake to make on a headline... they are starting to look like slashdot :)

    Bill
  • The simple solution to all this is to post all possible private information about the owners of the site. If they want the first amendment, they can have it, just as long as they realize the consequences.

    NOTE: I consider myself to be a big advocate of the Bill of Rights. I think even the KKK should be able to adopt a highway or hold a rally, regardless of the hate, provided the hate is not a direct call to arms with specific wheres and hows. It's one thing to post the postal (or even home) addresses of congressmen if you want a bill to pass or not. It's another thing to get a child's school schedule and address, and praise people when that kid's parent is killed on the way to pick up that child. The site was a clear "Here's where you need to go and when" for attackers.

    -jdm

  • Mainly because, if I follow this correctly, merely saying you are going to harm or kill somebody constitutes a crime.

    I have said this many times, and never really meant it considering I have yet to off anybody, but the truly disturbing implication here, especially under the threat of workplace shootings and whatnot, If I were to say it now, I could be prosecuted.

    This sounds suspiciously like a police state.
  • Most of the information that was published on the Nuremberg Files webpage was available through the yellow & white pages.

    It's not like they were saying "He usually eats lunch at McDonalds at 11:45 am, the McDonalds is located at 1121 Main Street, and the overlapping police patrols are 12 minutes apart..."

    This was an assault on free speech, Pure and simple. If this had been a site run by HCI and gave the same type of details about gun dealers do you think that there would have been any lawsuit?

    LK
  • One's a tool to perfectly good program that will let you view your own DVDs on your own computer, the other is a tool and encouragement for illegal action.

    So, peaceful protest is now illegal?

    LK
  • Whether you are pro or anti choice.

    Your bias is showing.

    I should hope we can all agree that using gestapo tactics to scare physicians by posting their addresses, names of spouses and children, phone numbers, children's schools and so on is just plain wrong

    Gestapo tactics implies secret, covert, or untraceable means of persuasion. Neal Horsley made it known who he was, and what his agenda was. I think that the website was less about intimidation than it was about shame. It was about trying to make pariahs out of these "doctors". I'm not going to invite Dr. Slepian to my Labor Day barbecue if I know what type of OB/GYN he is. No, you're not going to get invited to my kids' birthday parties if you make a living by killing children.

    If we happen to attend the same church, I'm not going to sit beside you. I'm not going to do business with people who do business with you.

    Having a right to privacy is not the same as having a right to anonymity.

    The people who wrote this site clearly intend that the doctors on the list be targeted for murder assault, and harassment

    I suppose that depends on how you define harassment. If you mean, refusing to do business with, or letting others know how someone makes his living, or cutting off contact with, I suppose that could be one of the intents.

    LK

  • People died because of it.

    No, people died because there are some people among us who feel that using force to accomplish their goals is acceptable regardless of what the law says.

    I am 100% in favor of Neal Horsley and the Nuremberg Files web page, and I am against unnecessary use of violence as well. There is no contradiction. Let people say whatever they want, but when you commit murder, you cross the line.

    LK
  • Sadly the bulk of people who call themselves pro-life are shown by their actions to really be anti-choice.

    If you want to stretch the logic that far, we can call you anti-choice as well. You're opposed to allowing people the choice of what to put on their web pages.

    You are anti-choice. I am pro-choice because I think that Neal Horsley should be allowed to choose what he puts on his web page.

    LK
  • What about the right to privacy of the people who were killed?

    Too bad they advertise their services in telephone directories huh? How can you advertise your services in one place, but demand to not be listed in another? These people are roaches in the kithcen who do not want the lights turned on.

    What concerns me here about this website is not that they were happy when ppl were killed, but that they must have followed people around and stalked them to procure such information, thus violating their right to privacy.

    You have a right to privacy, not a right to anonymity. Horsley would have been wrong if he planted hidden cameras in their homes, or bugged their cars or offices, but as I said, you have no right to anonymity.

    LK
  • I consider phone calls every night at three in the morning for an hour harassment.

    I consider people threatening to sue me for speaking freely to be harassment.

    the fact is, this is not about you and your church not doing business with this person, because clearly you won't.

    Our society has a right to know who they are, so that we can make a decision whether or not to do business or associate with them.

    If you want abortion to be illegal, join our system, and convince more then 50% that it is wrong. Don't do it by killing people, harassing them, and going outside the law.

    In order to legalize abortion, the left didn't do this. They got an activist court to legislate from the bench. How can you demand that we go about doing this in this way, when you side didn't?

    LK
  • You so called "pro-choice" people who are opposed to free speech are an enigma to me.

    You are in favor of people doing something that definately causes the death of a human, but are opposed to people doing something that maybe, might have, could have, encourged someone else to cause the death of a human.

    If this were 150 years ago and a slave had risen up and killed his master, you assholes would be saying "But slavery is legal! That nigger should have taken the whipping like he was supposed to!"

    And we, the abolitionists, would have said "But Mandingo is a human being who was defending himself."

    You would have responded "You republican kooks just don't get it, keep your laws off of our slaves!"

    Give me a fucking break! The Nuremberg Files web page had the stated goal of compiling information about abortion providers so that in the future if and when abortion becomes illegal they can be prosecuted for crimes against humanity. Do you know what the Nuremberg Trials were? In Nazi occupied europe it was legal to murder millions of jews, gypsies, homosexuals, and political opponents of the Nazis, but they committed crimes against humanity.

    You're not "pro-choice" you're "pro-abortion", if you were truly "pro-choice" you'd be fighing for free universal birth control. You only desire to have an out for your own irresponsibility. You want to be able to punish children for your mistakes.

    This is an issue of the politically correct thought police wanting to silence people who disagree with them.

    If PETA had a web page that listed beef distributors and their personal information, there would be no outrage. You wouldn't see all of these liberals screaming that they're inciting violence.

    LK
  • EVERYONE knows the real reason this site exists, and it is NOT business relations.

    Just because you feel threatened doesn't mean that you are threatened.

    Umm - excuse me, but last I looked, the court system was a part of our government. What using the courts to give us our rights back is worse then using harassment and murder to take them away again?

    What was that you said about convincing over 50% of the population that I am right? That's not how Roe V. Wade became case law.

    LK

  • hell, you probably already did with our braindead president.

    You mean the president who has appointed the most diverse cabinet in american history?

    somehow I think that you probably do think that it is justified to kill doctors who do things you don't like, but you won't embarass yourself by stating that here.

    Unlike most of you pro aborts, I'm very careful about who I have sex with. Being the only chick at the bar who said yes isn't good enough for me.

    I wouldn't be with a woman who would murder my child. Even if if you would.

    Since you bring it up, I DO think it's appropriate to shame and embarass abortion providers to attempt to sway them away from the practice.

    LK
  • It's not about ME or YOU, it's about the woman

    It's about the baby.

    Do you have to carry the baby?

    So then you concede that it is a baby.

    Do you have to get stuck in the situation of having to drop out of school because you ahve to care for a child? Perhaps permanently sitting you on the welfare role?

    Have you ever heard of adoption?

    DO YOU OR DO YOU NOT THINK THAT KILLING ABORTION DOCTORS IS AN ACCEPTABLE THING?

    Though I would never do it myself because I believe it to be murder, I can't tell other people whether or not they should do it. How can I impose my morals and judgements on other people?

    Sound familiar?

    LK
  • You go tell what you said right there to my friend who was raped when she was 15 and put the child up for adoption.

    Even those of us who are opposed to abortion have little problem in the case of rape or incest. However those only acount for 4-6% of all abortions in the US annually. It's a red herring that the pro abortion people use to try to muddy the water.

    And how her boyfriend dumped her 3 weeks after the condom broke and she got pregnant.

    And her baby should be punished for this because?

    I'm off to start a website advocating the murder of anyone who is stupid enough to believe in "god".

    Where on the Nuremberg Files web site did they advocate doing harm to anyone? Have you ver even seen the site?

    LK
  • This is the original Nuremberg Files list of abortion doctors.

    http://www.christiangallery.com/atrocity/aborts. ht ml

    Have a look for yourself.
  • If you're trying to equate a woman's body with what was essentially considered a matter of property laws, then prostitution should be legal.

    Yes. Why should it be illegal to sell something that it's perfectly fine to give away?

    IIRC, it wasn't that the list listed all these people, but that the names of the murdered doctors and patients were crossed off the list (as opposed to being deleted). It took on the air of a checklist.

    As well as patients who died from complications from botched abortions. Are you going to say that they incide abortion providers to commit malpractice?

    Pro-choicers do want birth control, and tend to consider abortion as a worst-case scenario.

    Why is it a worst case scenario? Maybe because even they too know that it's wrong?

    The pro-lifers tend to be religiously driven, and are hence the ones anti-contraceptive.

    I'm a neo pagan, there are many people who draw their opposition to abortion from sources other than religion. I keep a bix box of condoms next to my bed. Granted, I may not get to use them as often as I'd like, 2-3 per week is enough for now. Pro contraception, pro innocent life.

    Besides, laws don't work that way. If something becomes illegal, it's only illegal after the point it was passed. If it didn't work that way, can you imagine how may people would be in jail after they raised the minimum drinking age to 21?

    Ex post facto only applies to the laws of the US. As I said before elsewhere in this thread, it was perfectly legal for the Nazis to murder 12-13 million people in Nazi occupied europe. That didn't stop them from being tried for crimes against humanity by an international tribunal. HELLO! Nuremberg Files-Nuremberg Trials, that is the Creator's Rights party's goal. To eventually have abortion doctors tried for crimes against humanity by internation tribunal.

    30 million dead babies would seem to justify that.

    On the other hand, animal rights people tend not to build pipe bombs. And, again, the issue wasn't the list itself, but how the murder victims were "check off."

    So anti-hunters have never done anything violent? The greenies have never spiked trees to stop logging?

    In general, looking at your utter confusion, I hope you're in the half of US citizens that don't vote...

    I voted for Bush, and unless by some miracle Buchanan or Keyes gets the republican nomination in 2004, I'm voting for Bush again.

    LK
  • We like abortion because we are a democratic nation where the majority rules.

    Roe V. Wade did not become case law because of a majority of the population supporting it, it because case law because a majority of 9 judges supported it.

    Where is your proof that most of the members of our society are in favor of abortion on demand?

    Lastly, the constitution is designed to protect the minority from the tyranny of the majority.

    You don't need freedom of religion, if you're a WASP. You don't need freedom of speech if you only talk about how great the current administration is. You don't need to keep and bear arms if you live in a GREAT neighborhood where police response time is under 3 minutes.

    LK
  • >>Ummm....prove that.

    I don't have to prove it. It is a true statement, Roe V. Wade was decided because of the votes of 9 justices, they did not consider the feelings on the majority of Americans.

    >>Besides, if any elected official even tries to restrict abortion in this country, he/she will seriously jeopardize their chances at re-election due to the fact that women are the majority when it comes to voting.

    A majority of women in this country are pro life. Since they carry the babies, they know better wen we do that they are alive.

    Whether or not a politician risks his job depends on where s/he's from. Someone from pennsylvania who does, isn't in too much trouble. Someone from California who tries will get lynched. All depends on the politics of your state.

    >>Personally, I think abortion is a private issue and should be left up to the couples, not the politicians.

    I respect your right to hold any opinion, even if it is a stupid one. Do you also think that euthanizing old people who are no longer useful is a private issue that should be left up to families and not politicians?

    If not, why not?

    LK
  • >>Abortion is legal, murder is not.

    Slavery WAS legal. Wifebeating WAS legal. Raping your wife if she didn't consent WAS legal. Since when does legaliy have anything to do with morality?

    >>I can't believe this is *still* an issue in the US,

    Slavery was an issue in the USA for nearly 100 years. ( and a couple hundred before the country existed on this continent)

    >>the Christian Right is alive and well and trying to push their agenda on to everyone.

    That is a lie. I am a neo-pagan, there are athiests and agnostics that are just as pro life as any christian, how to you explain them?
  • >>You cannot claim a moral high ground if you're using the same tactics as your opposition. You must be above them in *all* respects.

    Not true, I'm going to take a little shortcut here. The US was able to take the moral high ground over Nazi Germany in WW2. The US was still waist deep in racism, sexism, and religious bigotry, but we weren't hearding people into gas chambers.

    >>Looking at abortion doctors accused of murder, and activists accused of murdering the doctors, I can't tell the difference.

    Let me help you. The doctors are the ones who kill children.

    LK
  • I find this to be a very unfortunate decision. The people who are running this site are doing so as a direct attempt to scare people away from offering legal reproductive services. Whether you are pro or anti choice, I should hope we can all agree that using gestapo tactics to scare physicians by posting their addresses, names of spouses and children, phone numbers, children's schools and so on is just plain wrong.

    The people who wrote this site clearly intend that the doctors on the list be targeted for murder assault, and harassment. I personally feel that this invokes the "yelling fire in a crowded theater" clause - these people's very lives are in danger because of this web page.

    Hopefully the supreme court will overturn this, and won't pat these domestic terrorists on the head, and approve the ability for people to create on-line hit lists.
  • No, of course picketing of corperations shouldn't be stopped. Heck - people who want to picket at abortion clinics should not be stopped (though i do support bubble laws).

    The difference lies in three places:

    1. Many of these people were actually unlisted.
    2. People generally don't picket at the houses of the corperate officers - they picket at the offices. There is no need for these people to be circulating private addresses.
    3. People generally don't go killing CEOs because they are upset about corperate policy. People DO kill doctors who provide abortion services.

    the third one is really the important one. When an environemental group compiles a list of corperate offices to picket do they cross off the names of people related to those companies that have been murdered? No. Do the Nuremburg people do this? Yes.

    Don't forget that three doctors have been shot shortly after being added to that list. I know correlation does not prove causation -> but there is deffinitly enough correlation to make one wonder....

  • Ahh - but a web site that was intended for the purpose of people finding doctors that give abortions would not be listing their home addresses, nor would it have lots of personal information about them, such as children's names, schools, spouses, spouses places of work and so on.

    the information on this list is intended for only two purposes, harassing and murdering abortions providers. period, end of story.

    The examples you brind forward would not contain they type of personal information that could be gleened from the Nuremburg files.
  • First off, I stand by my "Yelling Fire" statement, because the reason that is not protected speech is because it represents a clear threat to the lives of the people in the theater. I think the connection to this is clear, and does not need to be spelled out (but I will if anyone does not get it).

    as far as your comments on racism & tobacco - This web site is not JUST about proclaiming that abortions are harmful or should be banned - it is also about providing terrorists with a hit list of doctors to murder, and is inciting people to do just that. Your example leaves one wanting when it comes to a comparison.

    And yes, I DO think that (barring perhaps a regression or two to the ways of the past when a particularly conservative group gains control for a short period of time) we have evolved past the need to legislate christianity into our laws by making things like abortion illegal (which is a purely religious move).

    I really believe that our society will not any time soon descend back into racisim, church control of state, women holding an inferior status, or banned abortion. Happly I think we as a society have for the most part worked past all of those.

  • what? now fetuses are a racial group that needs protection?

    the difference here I think is that we ALL were fetuses at some point. We were not all jews at some point.

    But hey, you can continue to live in your mideval dark ages, condemning everthing that does not fit in your religion's tiny world view. In the mean time, I will live in this society which values people's choice of religion. (and don't think for a moment that banning abortion is not a religion issue)
  • Sure, and I suppose that we should deputise them all too, so they can legally hunt abortion doctors.

    and I totall disagree with you - the only reason the pro-lifers are willing to go so far as to kill someone they disagree with is BECAUSE they are fundamentalist christians.

    where else would they learn to be so judgemental of other people as to believe that they have the right to richously desend upon these doctors as if they were the avenging angel micheal himself.

    do your homework - ALL of the people who have murdered abortion doctors are fundies, ALL of them.
  • I think it's clear that the site was about pushing people to use any terrorist tactics that they have at their disposal to try and stop these people.

    I certainly consider taking pictures of the doctor, his children, and his wife and then mailing them to the doctor to be harassment.

    I consider phone calls every night at three in the morning for an hour harassment.

    I consider driving past a person's house constantly with binoculars to be at least suspisious.

    the fact is, this is not about you and your church not doing business with this person, because clearly you won't. It is about people like Neal Horsley and perhaps yourself (I don't know) using any means necessary to harass and murder these people out of what they do.

    If you want abortion to be illegal, join our system, and convince more then 50% that it is wrong. Don't do it by killing people, harassing them, and going outside the law.
  • that by far has to be one of the worst arguments against me yet.

    this has ABSOLUTLY nothing to do with anything you mentioned.

    what this has to do with is a group is supplying a known group of terrorists with personal information with the ACTUAL intent that these people get killed.

    one word: CONTEXT
  • I consider people threatening to sue me for speaking freely to be harassment.

    Oh - that's a good one. You think that to get people who are targeting your family, friends, children for harassement, and possible murder to be LESS damaging then to sue the person who started it.

    that's fscking hilerious

    Our society has a right to know who they are, so that we can make a decision whether or not to do business or associate with them.

    Oh, so suddenly knowing children's names, and the residence of these people is necessary to not doing business? unless you are a door to door salesman I don't buy it. Even if you are, you would be the one intruding. Face it - you are trying to come up with bullshit excuses so that people can continue to use this site as an accomplice to murder. EVERYONE knows the real reason this site exists, and it is NOT business relations.

    In order to legalize abortion, the left didn't do this. They got an activist court to legislate from the bench. How can you demand that we go about doing this in this way, when you side didn't?

    Umm - excuse me, but last I looked, the court system was a part of our government. What using the courts to give us our rights back is worse then using harassment and murder to take them away again?

  • My ass it wasn't a troll



    So all of a sudden everyone who even supports abortions are murderers? Hmm - I've never killed anyone....and I help to keep abortion legal by working with NARAL (National Abortion Rights Action League). I would think that makes your logic flawed - but then again, I think it's clear that it is.



    As far as the tantrum - you may not like it, but that is exactly how the far right is acting. (Oh, since we can't ahve our way being as mos of the public doesn't buy our bullshit, we'll just start killing people, and make impassioned speaches about tissue that we think should have a name)

    And no - I don't have to know you to be able to make that republic judgement. You said you advocated killing abortion doctors, so you support people going outside of the system, instead of using it. clearly you are not respecting the establishment of our government (oh that's right - now that it's not run by clinton, who I can only assume you thought was pimping for the jews or some other assenine idea, maybe you feel like you are working with the republic)

    I stand by my judgement of you on that.

    Finally - your last fool point. I don't need "liberal activists" to tell me that the NRA, the christian coalition, the Neo Nazis, the KKK, the Anti Choice movement and the waco fucks out at ruby ridge or the montana freemen are all basically branches of the far right. Sure, each has a different objective:

    NRA: keep guns
    Anti-Choicers: Woman should have no right to choose if a man carries is seed to term or not
    Christian Coalition: Get all these non christians out of this country
    Neo Nazis: Get all these Jews out of the country
    KKK: Get all of these blacks out of the country

    hrm - I see alot of similarity there.

    face it, the far right is based on the idea of hatign that which is different. Hell the CONCEPT of conservative (keep things the same) really pushes in that direction.

    if you want a country where you can opress women, kill jews and blacks, and carry as many guns as you want - fine, but go found it somewhere else.

  • Funny... I'd have to agree.. then what ..

    ... then we can have a list of all the people who do piercings as well. Then we can have a list of all the people who are not catholic, and so on and so on. While it may be free speach, what about the rights of the people that DON'T want there names listed? Don't they have a right to privacy? Does this mean that someone can start listing my name on some anti somethign web site because I don't agree with them. While this may be a win for Free Speach, it is a violation and loss for privacy as well.

    So what about someone who set up an anti gay site or an anti semetic site? Would that be free speach if they gave names and addresses of gays or jews? And then some of them started showing up dead????

    I don't want a lot, I just want it all!
    Flame away, I have a hose!

  • Then we need some!

    I don't want a lot, I just want it all!
    Flame away, I have a hose!

  • If the defendant can reasonably claim that the film he watched incited him to commit the act, and that hence he is not responsible, then he can reasonably claim to be innocent.

    If incitement from a film to do violence were a reasonable claim of innocence from the effects of your actions, then how much more powerful would be the argument advanced at the other Nuremberg trial: "I was just following orders". I wasn't incited, I was in the SS and they ordered me to do it! If your conclusions about European governments are true (and in general I would say they are not, but just for argument's sake), then this is exactly the wrong standard to use to prevent future holocausts in Europe.

    I believe in strict personal reponsibility - it's nobody's fault but yours if someone tells you to do something, you do it, and it was illegal. In some cases if you were given false information, you may be able to in turn go after whoever it was that convinced you to take your actions, but even then you are responsible for the actions you take. And I doubt that a defense of "but somebody on the Internet said it was OK to blow up abortion clinincs" would fly very far in court (at least I hope it wouldn't). You can't blame your mistakes on taking the advice of random untrusted strangers, on the 'net or anywhere else.

  • The people who are running this site are doing so as a direct attempt to scare people away from offering legal reproductive services. Whether you are pro or anti choice, I should hope we can all agree that using gestapo tactics to scare physicians by posting their addresses, names of spouses and children, phone numbers, children's schools and so on is just plain wrong.

    I'm unaware of any right to not be made afraid because of the things people say about you, especially if they're true. Should it be illegal for people to let on that you have a nice watch since you walk home through a bad neighborhood every day? I wouldn't be thrilled either if it was my name on that web site, but I can't complain too hard if the information could have been retrieved by anyone with a few hours to spare.

    I'm not a rabid pro-life supporter, but I don't see why posting publicly-available information in any forum should be illegal. Information is a tool; it's neither good nor bad and just possessing knowledge neither hurts nor hinders anyone's life. It's what you do with the knowledge that counts, and I do agree that anyone who uses such info to harm abortion providers or their families should be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. But muzzling information just because "someone might get hurt" is a bad justification IMHO.

  • I am a Christian who strongly opposes abortion.
    What these people are doing is definitely wrong. God would not support their efforts.

    I do understand their line of thinking - even though they are wrong in what they are doing.

    Here's what they are probably thinking:
    a) Abortion=murder
    b) murder=wrong
    c) this murderer kills dozens of babies
    d) the law protects the doctor - and the doctor makes a profit.
    e) The doctor should be stopped because murdering the doctor means fewer overall murders.

    I agree with the first statement - because life begins at conception.

    This idea used to be shot down by the theory that we evolve in the womb.
    Now we know that all of the necessary genetic information that makes you "you" and me "me" is present and complete when the sperm enters the egg.

    As such, science supports the idea of life beginning at conception.

    (didja ever notice that planned parenthood never mentions the idea of 'baby' when they run their ads? Their latest campaign only mentions 'choice' and 'rights.' They don't want to mention 'baby' because it undermines their position to acknowledge the personhood of the one being sucked into a sink.)

    The second statement is supported by the "top 10" (10 commandments)

    Where they get all fuzzy is that they try to justify stopping a person from doing more evil acts.

    This really demonstrates a low view of God.

    The God I worship promises that He will ensure justice. (Not the kind of lame, weak, inequitable so-called justice we find in the courts; but rather completely equitable justice.)

    When God judges, the punishment fits the crime. Perfectly.

    When people do evil things and seem to get away with it (for example, many believe that OJ killed two people) God knows and will respond in a truly just fashion. If OJ did that, I believe that God will make sure that he is held accountable for what he did.

    And that I am held completely accountable for the things that I have done. "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God"
    I am thankful that
    "God demonstrates His love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us" -

    "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved"

    Abortion is killing of developing humans. Those human's rights should be protected by our government. Today they are not. I hope that someday in the future the government will extend human rights to developing humans. It's sad that they don't do that today.

    Regards,
    Anomaly

    BTW - God loves you and longs for relationship with you. IF you would like to know more about this, please contact me at tom_cooper at bigfoot dot com
  • There's a large difference between Hitler and an unborn child.

    The Biblical position is against murder, not a total rejection of all killing.

    I have no issue with putting criminals in prison.

    It is not wrong for people to defend themselves.

  • Why are you so angry about this?

    Why are you so angry at God?

    He loves you and wants to have a relationship with you.
  • "Whether something is right or wrong is not boolean"

    I submit to you that if there is a creator who made all of us, then He has the right to determine as a boolean what is right or wrong. If there is a transcendant God, He and only He can definitively say what is good or what is bad.

    In the scheme of things, if there is a God, it really doesn't matter what I think, or for that matter what you think. There is only one standard - His.

    If there is not God, then you are free to do as you please.

    I also believe that you have stumbled into a logical fallacy. Killing is not forbidden by my "religion." Murder is forbidden.

    WRT "Thou Shalt Not Kill" - The Bible was written in Hebrew, and as I understand it, a direct translation would be "murder not shall you" (Hebrew is read right to left)

    The Bible has been translated, and that does mean that it is difficult to clearly interpret the precise meaning of every passage, but that does not make the Bible impossible to understand.

    When I don't fully understand the meaning of a passage, I'll look at multiple translations (word for word, and thought for thought) as well as reading some history to better understand the context of the passage.

    Saying that the Bible wasn't written in English and is not therefore reliable is a dodge by people who don't want to follow the Bible's teachings.

    (BTW - the 10 commandments says not to use God's name improperly - without reverence and respect, and yet people seem to think that murder is somehow worse than abusing God's name.)

    I'm not a vegan. The Bible doesn't suggest that I should be.

    Suicide? A bad idea. God gave you life and thinks that you should keep living until He decides that you shouldn't

    If God wanted to force you to worship Him, He would and could in a moment.

    I do not worship a God I do not know - I have a personal relationship with Christ - He changed my life.

    BTW - I'm not "after you" - I'm just doing what you are doing - hanging out in a portal where some interesting discussions happen. You're the one who wrote to me - I was simply posting in a discussion.

    If you would like to know more about why I believe that there's a God and about His love for you, please write me at tom_cooper at bigfoot dot com
  • 1. According to www.m-w.com,
    Murder is: the crime of unlawfully killing a person especially with malice aforethought

    Killing is: to deprive of life.

    Thus, all murder is by definition killing, but all killing is not murder.

    Even the Bible recognizes the right to lawfully kill people. (To head off at the pass anyone who wants to weigh in on this, I do not believe that it is appropriate to stone people for committing adultery. As a Christian I am not bound by the requirements of the Jewish laws.) If the killing takes place within the boundaries of the law it is not murder. Technically speaking, this means that abortion is not murder, even though it definitely ends a human life. I believe that we should value human life more highly than we do in our culture, but that is a different issue.

    2. Why can't you accept that? A 1 second old has those rights. When does that first second begin? Human gestation takes 38-42 weeks, but babies removed from the womb prior to the "normal" gestation period are granted human rights privileges as soon as they leave the womb. Today our technology is such that babies born before 24 weeks have very poor odds of surviving, but that's a technology issue. It used to be that it was babies born before 30 weeks, and before that it was 35 weeks.... Technology and medical capability determine that today. When will human rights begin once our technology is sufficiently advanced that conception to "birth" can occur outside the mother's body? It's a slippery slope. I submit to you that human rights should be conferred at conception.

    3. Hitler intentionally committed crimes against humanity. He could have been put to death because he was a criminal. Unborn babies have not harmed anyone - at least not intentionally. I disagree with your interpretation of the Bible. Could you elaborate?

    4. That's not very tolerant of you. :-)
    BTW - Do you ask trolls to stop trolling? I am not trolling here, but simply following the command of my God. "Go into all the world and make disciples"

    There's a difference between people who claim to be Christians and those who ARE Christians.

    If I claimed to be a vegan, but you saw me having steak and eggs for breakfast each day, it would be hard to believe me when I said I was a vegan.

    Jesus said
    "By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." John 13:35

    If people behave in a way that is not loving - consistently angry or hateful, it's doubtful that they are really Christians.

    Please don't think that Christianity is Jerry Falwell. There's a lot more to it than a dusty irrelevant book and a charicature.

    Please let me know if you'd like to know more about this topic. (If not, I won't chase after you.)
  • Could God stop you from committing suicide? Certainly. Would He? No.

    He would not because this would mean that you were being compelled to obey. He gives people free will to choose whether to do what is right, or do what is wrong.

    God tolerates evil in the world because He is merciful - He wants all people to follow Him.

    If God were to wipe out evil, He would wipe us all out. It's His mercy that allows us to continue to be here.

    Regards,
    Tom Cooper
  • You're right. That's the best way of thinking about it that I've encountered.

    What is being violated is the right to privacy. And that's why the names of federal agents should be kept secret too. That was a correct decision that was made on the wrong grounds. Privacy is the criterion that should have been used. People, to be secure in their persons, need to have their privacy protected. There's always somebody who doesn't like who you are or what you stand for. So people who don't willingly choose to be public personalities (like, e.g., movie actors) should have the right to privacy.


    Caution: Now approaching the (technological) singularity.
  • And then there's the question of accuracy. What if the information isn't accurate? Do you get to apply for a retraction? Whee! More laws!

    Or, perhaps the laws governing the accuracy of credit records could be extended? Whee! More regulations!

    If regulations/laws are going to have anything to do with this, then they will need to be crafted very carefully. The recent history of the legislature doesn't promise well for laws, and the recent history of the executive branch implies that regulations might be even worse. But either might be better than an international treaty, which is what might really be required to do much about this.


    Caution: Now approaching the (technological) singularity.
  • Too bad the AC's comment was modded down, It's pretty funny:

    ARMS RACE! We need a site listing the home addresses of anti-abortion crusaders who have committed murder, calling for THEIR deaths. As well as a list of the anti-abortion crusaders who contributed to the web site listing the doctor's addresses. When the dust settles there will be no one left alive with a strong opinion on abortion. ALL YOUR FETUSES ARE BELONG TO US!

    The AYBABTU ref is unnecessary, but the idea of rivaling web sites causing the elimination of all people who care about an issue, one way or another, is pretty good satirical SF. Not only that, it points out an interesting contrast between government-sponsored justice/violence and vigilante justice/violence.

    --

  • I think that it would be oh so lovely if we had federal statutes to protect the privacy of such information. If it is given that the addresses, phone numbers, etc, of these doctors was publicly available information, then it seems well within the rights of the publishers to put all of that information together even in that context.

    But the question is, should that information have even gotten to them in the first place? Should they be able to publish that private information without authorization from those doctors? I tend to think not.

    ---

  • So, what we need to do is put up a web site with the name, addresses, routes to work, etc. of the people who put out the Nuremburg Files. Let's see if they like it when their kids are being followed by people carrying guns and there are protesters on their front lawns.

    The only good defense against hate speech is more speech...

    -jon

  • Thanks. We all really appreciate that. Especially the customer service and support people that have nothing to do with crafting company policy or writing software.

    ---
  • No, no, no, no.

    THEY'RE more like the independant contractors that were working on the (incomplete) Death Star when those pesky rebels blew the fucker up.. hell, they KNEW they were working for the Evil Empire (tm), and thus knew that they in for. You can't do that kind of work without building up some serious negative karma, man.
  • The difference being that the United States consitution (remember that pesky document) preserved individual freedoms above the interest of the society.


    The second is not the case here. That is what this trial was about.


    For the most part, rules that exist in Europe simply can not be maintained here. We are too diverse of a socity, with too much different backgrounds etc. Therefore natural self-interest (aided and abeited by the constitution) keeps thoose who would cause violence for personal reasons in line.

    Hence, no Hitlers and a much more conservitive society.

  • You know the difference between just saying "I'll kill you", and the actual _real_ threatening of people?
    An actual death threat makes a normal life rather impossible, due to the imminent fear of being killed everytime you go to bed, or go out og the house, or just about any situation.
    Personally I dislike people who yell "I'll kill you", I find it crude and unpleasant, but I wouldn't want to see you prosecuted for it. If however, you looked me in my eyes and told me in a way I found to be truly sincere, that you would hunt me and my children down at night, then yes I would file charges against you, and I would be _very_ glad that this kind of law applies. The same goes for letters threatening to kill. If I file a complaint, you may of course be innocent, and that is up to the courts to decide.
    This story isn't even _about_ this. The slashdot-crowd just goes way too far sometimes.
  • And seriously, these pictures of aborted fetus's[sic]? Yuck the people who made this web site are fscked up!

    And the people who shredded said ftuses are not fscked up? I think that it's a useful thing to demonstrate that what they destroy is not a lump of tissue but a human being. An arm, a hand, a head--these illustrate that we are not dealing with a tumour but with a man.

  • Finally the law will let me put up the list of address's where teen schoolgirls commonly walk alone and would be easily abducted.
    Everytime one of them gets kidnapped/assulted etc I'll put a little cheer on my website.

    What part is exactly the freedom of speech there?
    Is a list of address's a view? An opinion?
    Is my "freedom of speech" to list address's more important than other people's saftey??

    Just trying to put things in perspective.
  • Both left leaning liberals and right wing conservatives want it both ways all the time.
    Well, since we're making sweeping generalizations, here's one: Libertarians want to re-write the constitution for their own agenda, but seek to do so by weakening key points of interpretation.

    Case in point:
    Now if we can only educate people as to why free speech should be defended even when they don't like the content.
    I dislike Nazi ideology. I will actively seek to discredit (truthfully) the arguments of Nazi proponents and stop others from falling for the party line. However, I will defend people's right to speech the same way Noam Chomsky did. If a Nazi wants to write a book, in which he questions World War II history, I say let him have his press. If an anarchist wants to say "down with the government", more power to him (or her). If an anti-abortion advocate wants to say that doctors should be confronted with the horror that they instill in others, I don't agree, but go you forth and speak!

    When a person posts the name and address of another person in with literature advocating harm to that person, I don't care if the target is Steve Balmer, Richard Stallman, the undersecretary of defence or the very person to whom I am responding; it's just wrong. On what basis? When you incite people to kill, you create a weapon. When you point that weapon and it goes off, you cannot claim "I knew it was loaded, but it's the gun's falt for firing."

    If you were talking to ONE person, and discussed this, I would say that you have put it in that person's hands to make a decision, but when you're dealing with a mob of unknowns through a publishing mechanism (say, the Web), you know that someone out there is going to be unbalanced enough to do the deed.

    Let me put this another way: if I walk into an asylum full of violently insane people, unlock the doors, tell them that the president is evil and must die and then I tell them exactly where he will be later today... would you say that I have just conspired to kill the president? In what way is it different if I say the same thing on a Web site? If I lay out the plan to kill someone, and suggest that it should be done, I am at the very least conspiring to commit 1st degree murder, am I not?

    I have 2 disclaimers: 1) I never got the chance to read the original threats. If they were of the form, "here are the people that you should talk to," then I can't see a case. If they were of the form, "here are the people that need to pay for these crimes, and don't deserve to live," then I absolutely feel that the first amendment has nothing at all to do with this. 2) I am not a lawyer. Do your own research. These are just opinions.
  • Your argument is classically known as a strawman. You state "I want X. I'm going to get X. I'm ENTITLED to X. If your Y needs get in the way, you'd better watch out."

    First off, this statement cannot be mapped to the post to which you reply. Especially "I'm going to get X" and "you'd better watch out."

    You procede to demonstrate that your statement is one that is used to limit rights. Yes, clearly. Too bad no one said it.

    The post to which you replied was discussing the harm that would come to those who engaged in a legal activity which some do not agree with.

    Let me quote: "A bunch of kids' rights to go to school without being harrassed, threatened or hurt because of what their parents do for a living just got trashed."

    Here we have the pivotal argument: is it legal to publish information which is intended to cause harm to come to specific persons. We're not talking about posting anti-abortion literature (which I defend your right to do all day long). We're talking about saying that someone should die and then posting their name and address.

    As far as I'm concerned, this is loading the gun and aiming the gun. Even if the gun goes off on its own, I don't buy that you are innocent of the murder.
  • You ask a lot of questions, so they must be taken in turn:
    • "There is a large contingent of people who think that what the people on this list are doing is completely and totaly abhorent and wrong. These people don't have the right to speak out against the people on this list?"

      Of course they have that right. As well they should. Let's make no mistake, no one who defends the bill of rights can reasonably turn around and say that speaking out against someone for their deeds is wrong.
    • "They don't have the right to seek them out and try to convince them that what they're doing is wrong?"

      Again, of course they do. You have every right to publish a list of abortion doctors and suggest that people write them letters, call them or send them email. Personally, I think this is rude, but clearly defended.
    • "They don't have the right to call them murderers?"

      I'm not sure. Clearly the law has determined that abortion is not (always) murder, so to call someone who practices abortion a murderer may be slander. I am not a lawyer, but I wouldn't take the chance if I were you. I would go for, "Dr A. is an abortion doctor, and I think abortion is murder." It makes your take on abortion clearly your take and you clearly accuse Dr A. of nothing other than abortion.


    However, none of what you ask goes to the core question: can you post a list of people with their addresses and say that someone should kill them? If that is, indeed what was done, then I cannot see why it should be protected speech. You are inciting to murder. Would you be happy if I put up a list of pregnant mothers with their addresses and said that these children should be terminated with or without their mother's consent?
  • Free speech shouldn't be limited if you want bubble-gum

    No, nor should it be limited because you want anything. It should be, and is, limited to protect the freedom of others. This is why you cannot lie in a way that damages others. This why you cannot write up a plan for the assassination of the president and distribute it (but you *can* write up a list of reasons why he should die).

    In this case, I contend that the particular speach involved (regardless of the hot-button topic of abortion) constituted a threat and plan for serious harm to individuals, published to a wide and willing audience. This is, as far as I can tell, like pointing a gun at someone's head and then saying that you're not responsible for murder because you're not the one who pulled the trigger.

    This is exactly the kind of speach that we're not supposed to let people get away with, beucause it damages the freedom of others to, as the Declaration of Independance put it, "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness." The person seeking an abortion is only harmed indirectly. We should be concerned about this, but not so much as to infringe on free speach.

    We should be very concerned that idiots who hide behind a rhetoric of saving life advocate and promote murder. I won't tell you if I'm pro-life/choice, but I will tell you that I feel ashamed of the actions of these people as a human being.
  • punish the people who are infringing them. What's so hard about that?

    Right on, brother! In this case, that happens to be the people with the Web site that published names and suggested that these are people to harm. That's clearly conspiracy to commit a crime, and under our law that's a crime.

    I can only guess that the judge felt there was sufficient disclaimer on the page to nullify the threats and suggestions that they made elsewhere. I would not buy it, and I hope that another court overturns it.
  • > 1. Many of these people were actually unlisted.

    So if information takes more than 10 minutes to find, the publishing of that information is not Free Speech?

    > 2. People generally don't picket at the houses of the corperate officers - they picket at the offices. There is no need for these people to be circulating private addresses.

    So, because you can't think of an immediate justification for publishing something, and you don't like it, it's not Free Speech?

    (Example justification: If the doctors forget where they lived, they could look it up on the web site. -- But I'd guess that this isn't a good enough justification given the fact that you really, really don't like the message.)

    > 3. People generally don't go killing CEOs because they are upset about corperate policy. People DO kill doctors who provide abortion services.

    So, all anyone has to do to get all anti-corporate websites shut down is kill a single CEO? Someone might just take you up on that. (Of course, then you'll be sued for $109 million. That is, unless your post was Free Speech.)

    Free speech is real simple. Either you have it or you don't.
  • I didn't really get the point of the rest of your arguments, but common sense is really a BS concept.

    You can argue that anything, no matter how off the wall, is just common sense.

    Try it... bigger is better -- it's just common sense. Smaller is better -- it's just common sense. See?
  • I read the post. It agreed (as you seem to agree) that free speech should be limited for the sake of abortions.

    Well, free speech shouldn't be limited because you want abortions. Not even if you really, really want abortions.

    Free speech shouldn't be limited if you want bubble-gum, or world peace, or your MTV either (or "to feel good about yourself", or "a pleasant trip to school", or "because you hate right wingers").

    Because my free speech is mine. And laws and the constitution are there to prevent you or the government from taking away what's mine. And what's more, this protection is provided to everyone equally. (Hooray.)

    (I could swear I just said this in my prior post.)

    BTW: I can read all your arguments and analogies in favor of taking away this particular free speech that you don't like. They simply don't matter. (Do arguments in favor of slavery matter? If I came up with 6 good reasons we should all come to your house and steal your car, would the reasons matter?)
  • It follows simple rules of logic. It doesn't use weird analogies. This is NOT an example of algebra:

    A is like B, and I think B=3, so A must equal something like 3, and you said it was 7, so that's libel [dictionary.com] and you must be in the 10th grade to think that.

    Oh well.

    And as for the site in question, the court was really pretty clear. It's OK to (Y) "help someone else find a doctor", because that's free speech. It's not OK to be (Z) "killing the doctor", because that isn't free speech, and it's bad for the doctor.

    Algebra again : "help someone else find a doctor" (Y) != "killing the doctor" (Z)

  • by Kohath (38547) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:52PM (#332812)
    You have now incited the posting of doctor's credit cards. Me and the doctors will be suing you for $109 million dollars.

    Next, I'll be suing Slashdot for inciting your incitement. I'll be rich!

    I wish Slashdot would post more stories like this. (Oh no! Now I'll have to sue myself!)

    And so forth...
  • by Kohath (38547) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @06:45PM (#332813)
    This phrase is the one of the most regrettable things ever uttered in the history of American law.

    The day that all freedoms are abolished and all independant voices are silenced in this country, it will be justified with "... after all, you can't yell FIRE in a crowded theater."

    The next argument will be: "you need a license to drive, why shouldn't you need a license to " (watch TV, write an essay, have children, cut hair, own a pet, carry a gun, walk, eat, breathe, etc.).

  • by Kohath (38547) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @02:04PM (#332814)
    This is actually a great post. It completely illustrates the reason for a constitutionally constructed society.

    The attitude is clear:

    I want X. I'm going to get X. I'm ENTITLED to X. If your Y needs get in the way, you'd better watch out. If you stand in my way with your Y, I'll take away your Z and anything else I have to, including your W. I'm going to get X.

    In this case, X="an abortion", Y="Free Speech", Z="money", and W="freedom".

    Try X="guns" or X="money" or X="a pizza" or X=anything. Fill in the other variables with things you'd like not to be taken away.

    The reason for laws and a constitution is to prevent this type of attitude from prevailing.
  • by taxman_10m (41083) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @02:42PM (#332818)
    It goes beyond religion.

    There are athiest prolifers: http://www.godlessprolifers.org [godlessprolifers.org]

    And there are libertarian arguments against abortion: http://www.l4l.org [l4l.org]

    To view the issue as a "religious issue" is as incorrect to view slavery as a religious issue simply because many of the arguments surrounding its practice in the US were religious in nature.

  • by Dr.Evil (47264) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:19PM (#332832) Homepage

    That's a ridiculously weak connection.

    Yelling "Fire!" in a crowded theatre has the potential for immediate, causal effects of demonstrable harm. People would not run in panic, most likely causing some to be trampled or otherwise injured, if you never yelled "Fire!"

    In this case, however, you cannot prove that any harm came to any abortionist because of direct action by the website, or that any who were harmed would not have been harmed had the website not existed. For the "FIRE!" analogy to work, any harmful action in question must be conclusively shown to be a direct result of the speech.

  • by mwalker (66677) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @02:02PM (#332859) Homepage
    This case just outlines the need for a Privacy Bill of Rights. The Court is absolutely right - this speech is protected by the First Amendment.

    But it should be absolutely banned under a Privacy Bill of Rights. Those people should be able to rant and rave about how Planned Parenthood is Hitler all they want, but they should not be able to violate the privacy rights of these doctors. Best Buy and Safeway shouldn't be able to sell my purchase profile from my "Safeway Club Card" to direct marketers and my health insurance company. Digital consumer profiles and personal profiles should be identified as tradeable items that are the intellectual property of the identified person.

    If ever there was intellectual property, it's your own name, address, and SSN. And publishing people's names against their will along with other identifying information, for the purpose of having them executed or any other malicious reason (even calling them at dinner to sell them life insurance) should be explicitly prohibited.

    at least, that's what i think.
  • by Stevis (69064) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:55PM (#332862) Homepage
    and please, before flaming me for having a different view than yours, read the fucking post and tell me where i have promoted one view or another.

    Let's see, how about:

    doing so would cast those favored by the media in a negative light. can't have that!

    This states that those called pro-choice in the media would be considered negative by being called pro-abortion. Therefore, you call call pro-abortion a "negative" thing, promoting an anti-abortion view.

    Which is your right of course. I myself am pro-choice and anti-abortion. I'd like to see it never happen, but I'm not the one carrying the baby to term. I'd like to see adoption become a more viable option, but until that time...

    And I do have a problem with anti-abortion, pro-death-penalty people calling themselves "pro-life". Not that you have displayed any evidence of this hypocracy (or any hypocracy, for that manner), just saying.

    Stevis

  • by Temporal (96070) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @02:03PM (#332903) Journal
    So, when can we be seeing a site listing the names and addresses of the people who maintained this thing and anyone who ever mirrored it? I wonder if that would make them feel a bit differently...

    ------
  • by mr_gerbik (122036) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:32PM (#332935)
    Now I can resume my website that publishes the names and addresses of microsoft employees in hopes that it shall bring them to an early demise. MUAAAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

    -gerbik
  • by mr_gerbik (122036) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:31PM (#332936)
    I'm glad you appreciate a GOOD JOKE. Lighten up my friend.

    I would work for Microsoft if I could.. but they said my coding was too solid for their taste.

    -gerbik
  • by KahunaBurger (123991) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:31PM (#332948)
    I'm glad I'm not the only one on this crazy group that sees any rights for people past the first two ammendments to the USC. (Or that thinks freedom can be restricted by someone other than the goverment)

    I love the fact that this was labled Your Rights Online. Yeah, your on line rights are doing fine. Your offline rights to provide or recieve reproductive health services just took a trip to the shitter. A bunch of kids' rights to go to school without being harrassed, threatened or hurt because of what their parents do for a living just got trashed. But hey, it's FREE SPEECH so everything's good....

    The people who run this page are disgusting terrorist fucks, and they just got the green light to keep going. You'll excuse me if I don't feel any increase in freedom from that. As far as I'm concerned, my world just got a little less free. But you'd have to let go of two preconceptions to see why, and most /.ers are really attached to those.

  • by Salsaman (141471) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:36PM (#332983) Homepage
    Whilst I agree wholeheartedly with the concept of free speech, surely the line has to be drawn when that speech includes personal information, such as somebody's address ?

    What if they were publishing the doctors' credit card numbers instead - would that still be protected as free speech ?

  • by SquadBoy (167263) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:13PM (#333020) Homepage Journal
    That would be wrong. Justice Holmes wrote that opnion in dissent. The law in fact is such that you do have the right to yell fire in a theater. You may want to look here [google.com] and here [google.com] to understand why.
  • by Archangel Michael (180766) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:40PM (#333028) Journal
    Both left leaning liberals and right wing conservatives want it both ways all the time. They want free speech when it suits them, and don't when it doesn't. Only Libertarians understand where the line should be drawn. If speech causes real damage and the link is clear between the damage and the speech cause, then there is a legal recourse.

    This is the rational for not being able to yell "fire" in a crouded theater. The causal reaction to the speech is likely to cause real damage.

    Now if we can only educate people as to why free speech should be defended even when they don't like the content. That would be real education.
  • by prelelat (201821) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:33PM (#333045)
    I don't really agree about abortion but "I" don't think that gives me a right to chear when a person who does is killed died or what ever. If you beleive that abortion is bad then your just as bad as the other person to be rid of a human being. Wheather or not its grown any.
  • by Tyrannosaurus (203173) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:56PM (#333047)
    Would you still feel this same way if I published your home phone & address against your wishes? How about if I asked if someone could please use this information to harrass you (literally) to death?

    What if I published your credit card numbers or social security number? Have I commited a crime if I never used that info for identity theft? What if someone else did?

    My point is, not all speech is protected. Yelling 'fire' in a crowded theater is against the law. If I abuse you with 'fighting words' (following the Supreme Court's definition), you can legally beat my lights out.

    Limitations do exist--its not 'all-or-nothing' as you would have us believe. My opinion in this particular case is that the court dropped the ball, and went with the letter of the law rather than the intent of the law.

    ---

  • by wanderung (221424) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @01:01PM (#333065)

    republican, white congress, some of whom were in office and voted against civil-rights legislation in the 60's

    Quite the racist aren't we? Not to mention uninformed. Check out the below link about the Civil Rights Act of 1964 along with the voting records. More Democrats voted against the bill than did Republicans.

    http://www.congresslink.org/civil/essay.html

    Two days later, the Senate passed the bill by a 73 to 27 roll call vote. Six Republicans and 21 Democrats held firm and voted against passage.

  • by Bonker (243350) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:37PM (#333091)
    When I attended UT, I had dinner from time to time with an Iranian exchange student who couldn't beleive that Americans got away with so much in the way of criticising our leaders and the rich and powerful. I had to explain to him the difference between a threat and criticism, but he still couldn't beleive how liberal we were and how public we could be with our speech.

    He did see, however, how important it was for us to keep hold of these freedoms, even if it meant sacrificing some safety. (I'm certain that the abortion doctors don't agree with me, but...)

    For every Klan site and every kill the abortion doctor site, there's a cryptome.org or a peacefire.org who couldn't function without basic freedom of speech laws. For every nutcase redneck who promotes white power, there's a rainbow coalition website who would have been edged out by our republican, white congress, some of whom were in office and voted against civil-rights legislation in the 60's.

    It is important to watch for threats and illegal behavior, but to be truly fair, free speech decisions must almost always come down in favor of the speaker.

    These words are as true today as they were 50, 100 and 200 years ago: 'If it doesn't work for everybody, it doesn't work for anybody.'


  • by blair1q (305137) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @02:37PM (#333127) Journal
    Unrelated?

    Seems like if you apply a few degrees of Kevin Bacon to it I bet you would find that the people doing the shooting are not all that unrelated with the people doing the slandering and intimidating.

    So now it's okay for, say, November 17 to come into the US and incorporate a 501(c)(3) front that recruits members for November 17 as long as it says "kill them with kindness" in the title?

    There's a lot of bad craziness in this ruling. They reach back to a left-wing supportive ruling with at least as much bad craziness in it in order to support this instance of courtly insanity. It's almost as though they're trying to tangle this obvious case of hate-speech/violence in order to get a legal excuse to re-review the previous one. When the Supreme Court gets this, they can either validate the concept of violence-enabling speech as free speech, or they can fix it across all the cases cited.

    And while I would agree that speech calling for violence necessary to revolutionize the government is clearly protected--it's the reason for the 1st Amendment--I don't agree that speech calling for violence against individuals engaged in medical practice should be protected. The government is not a doctor, and political action should be sufficient to decide the fate of such doctors. If political action is not sufficient, then your quarrel is with the government, not the doctors, or you're just plain wrong. In fact, I'm leaning towards the attitude that calling for violence against any person by name rather than a governmental institution is just plain wrong, though that would take some careful defining in a world where we place or inherit people in governing positions as an institution of one.

    --Blair
  • by Urban Existentialist (307726) on Wednesday March 28, 2001 @12:35PM (#333129) Homepage
    There is a central question here. Where does the responsibility lie? If a film portrays a violent act, and someone who watches that film then goes and commits that act in real life, who is responsible?

    If the defendant can reasonably claim that the film he watched incited him to commit the act, and that hence he is not responsible, then he can reasonably claim to be innocent.

    What this lawsuit says is that people who see a violent film and then commit a violent act are innocent. Is this reasonable?

    Perhaps in some instances it is. The general public is, well, stupid and impressionable. European governments have recognised this for sometime, and take care of these issues for them by implementing strong censorship of violence. Hence there is little violence in European countries.

    Should America foillow this lead? I think that if they can demonstrate the innocence of the defendant and think this is reasonable as the Europeans do, then yes. This is an undecided question though.

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