What Free Speech Does Not Mean

One of the most common arguments you’ll see from the ignorant on any number of a variety of topics is the ‘It’s free speech’ argument. Lately I’ve seen this with the Daniel Tosh Rape joke scenario, the We-Need-Moar-Guns-To-Stop-People-From-Shooting-Theatres debate, the Chik-Fil-A We-don’t-hate-gays-but-donate-to-anti-gay-groups debacle. And numerous other ridiculous situations that I have a hard time imagining anyone would want to defend.

Usually, the ‘It’s Free Speech’ argument is said completely without irony and without an understanding of what it actually means. It’s like people think it’s a ‘get out of argument free card’.

What free speech means:

That you are free to voice your opinion without government interference.

That’s it. Full stop. That’s all it means. Here’s what it does not mean:

That you are free to say something remarkably stupid without receiving criticism.

As I’ve said on a previous post : ‘No one is above critique. See that’s the flip side of the ‘Free Speech’ argument that so many seem to draw like a gun. Yes, you can say stupid things…and then I can verbally tear you a new asshole for it.’ If you try to tell me I’m not allowed to criticize something you’ve said…you’ve just committed the ultimate hypocrisy in asserting that your Free Speech somehow outweighs mine.

That I have to listen to what you have to say.

MRAs (Male Rights Activists) may rant and rave and froth and foam to their heart’s content. And they do quite frequently. I’m not interested and I’m not listening. My brain can only handle so much unreasoning hate and pure stupid. In no way have I taken away their rights by focusing my attention away from their fecal flinging. I won’t pull you off your soapbox…but I have the right to walk by without stopping.

That I have to provide you an opportunity to voice your opinion.

I believe this is part of the FreeThoughtBlogs vs Thunderf00t comedy. He was given a blog space by them…they realized he was only there to shit disturb…they promptly removed him. No Free Speech was taken. As a presenter or organizer, I don’t have to allow you the stage. As a webmaster I don’t have to give you a blog. As a blogger, I don’t have to let you write a guest post and I certainly don’t have to allow your opinions in the comment section of my personal blog. I’m not the government and I’m not censoring you. I’m just not giving up my space for your opinions. Get your own damned blog. I hear there’s this place called WordPress that gives them away for free!

That I must continue to support the person who is exercising their free speech.

For example, if I choose to boycott a business because they are vocal in their bigotry, this is not infringing on their free speech. They chose to voice their opinion. I chose not to support it. If, as another business, I choose to sever our relationship, this too is not taking away the rights of the first business. They chose to voice an opinion that may not be well received by the masses. There are consequences in that.

That the listeners must agree with the speaker.

Have your say. Try to swing me to your perspective. Don’t throw a temper tantrum and accuse people of stealing your free speech when they don’t instantly bow down to your demands or agree with you. Be an adult, for chrissakes. Or by all means, flop down in the mud and throw your temper tantrum. It gives us fledgling bloggers something interesting to blog about. And by ‘blog about’ I do mean ‘mock relentlessly’.

And you still deny religion rots the brain?

Recently there has been a string of sexual assaults at York University in Toronto. One Muslim cleric’s response is, of course, to take away the rights of women and force harsh penalties on those who ‘dress provocatively’. Whatever that means.

The entire letter to The Toronto Sun is so full of stupid that it burns. Al-Haashim Kamena Atangana, the street cleric in question, is not what you’d call…a thinker. But I’m a glutton for punishment, so let’s go through it anyway!

I wanted to mention that the reason why these sex attacks are continuously happening is because the Canadian laws, which gives too much freedom to women, are the cause of these sex attacks.

You hear that? Women having freedom is causing men to rape them. If only we punished women more, rapists wouldn’t have to intercede on behalf of Canadian Law and do it for us. The rapists are doing a public service. Damn you, Canadian Legal System, for not caring about women enough to persecute them relentlessly! Never mind the logical acrobatics one needs to make in order for this line of reasoning to make sense. Not oppressing one group sufficiently is apparently going to lead to that group being attacked.

Also, the grammar nazi in me would like to point out that the attacks are not continuous. That would imply a never ending string of events with no break whatsoever. Like, not even bathroom breaks.

The reason why a woman gets raped is because of the way she dress. Women dress so provocatively so much that they receive too much attention for themselves and that attention at times leads to death.

It’s not because she was attacked by a criminal. No. It’s because she received too much attention that might result in death. The fact that there no evidence to suggest that a woman’s choice of dress figures in to rape statistics and that rape is about power rather than animal lust (as this cleric and others like him seem to suggest) mean nothing.

It’s sickening how little respect these idiots seem to have for men as a whole. In their world view men cannot control themselves sufficiently not to attack or kill just because they saw a little cleavage. That would make them extremely weak minded and pathetic. And even after acknowledging that they believe men are rutting pigs without the ability to reason or control themselves they still somehow believe that men are better equipped to be in positions of power. Baffling. There’s that logic fail again. Anyhoo, let’s take in some more wisdom from cleric dumbshit, er Al-Haashim Kamena Atangana…

If the law enforcements and the Canadian politicians were very serious about solving this problem, they would introduce laws that would make it illegal for women to dress provocatively in the streets.

Define Provocative. Are we talking boobies(Being topless in public is legal in Ontario)? Or two inches of calf? Depending on where you are either or neither of these are provocative. But yes, what this comes down to is again: Canada, if you loved your women, you’d spend more time oppressing them.

However by arresting sexual predators is not going to solve the problem because as long women continue to dress like this there will always be perverts and rapist who will continue to remain on the loose.

No need to punish the criminals. Boys will be boys, afterall. Men can’t be expected to control themselves when confronted with the sight of a woman’s calf. And that’s her fault. The important thing is that we blame the victims and use violence against them as an excuse to heap more ridiculous rules and restrictions on them.

Why is it that Rapists and sexual predators only target women that dress so provocatively?

Citation please. You’re not going to get stats on that, of course, since Shariah Law doesn’t acknowledge that rape happens. It’s simply called adultery and she gets stoned to death for it. Unless she has four male witnesses to the crime…and then she just gets killed by her family. You know, so they don’t lose honour. Or it’s called marriage. Even when a woman is kidnapped and married by a mullah against her will and then raped…well, that’s not considered rape either.

And as a bonus, here’s a list of rape myths from the University of Minnesota.

As an aside, is a street cleric the same thing as those religious doomsayers who hold up signs that the ‘End is Near’ when they’ve gone off their medications for too long? That might explain some of his ‘advice’.

Tesla and Women’s IQs

“But the female mind has demonstrated a capacity for all the mental acquirements and achievements of men, and as generations ensue that capacity will be expanded; the average woman will be as well educated as the average man, and then better educated, for the dormant faculties of her brain will be stimulated to an activity that will be all the more intense and powerful because of centuries of repose. Woman will ignore precedent and startle civilization with their progress.”

Nikola Tesla

Over at Jezebel there’s an interesting article with the straightforward title: Women Are All of a Sudden Scoring Higher than Men on IQ Tests. It follows on the announcement that…well, you read the title. No need to be redundant. Apparently, for the first time since they began keeping records, women are averaging up to 5 points higher than men on Intelligence Quotient tests. This follows on another report suggesting that women are now earning more college degrees than men, and that young professional women are now outperforming young men in the job market.

By the many noodly appendages of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, how could such a thing have happened? You may be asking yourself. This flies in the face of everything that male chauvinist and religious folks have been telling us for ages. Lady-brainz are delicate things that aren’t supposed to be taxed with too much thinking. Thinking causes worry lines…and feminism. Best leave it to the menfolk. Clearly it is time to panic. But first, let’s cast about for something to blame.

Two quotes from the article in the Telegraph suggest that:

One theory for the result is that the demands of juggling family life and building a career have made women more intelligent.

This sounds a little like the reasoning of Evolutionary Psychology. I am not a fan of this budding ‘science’ (And I call this science in the same way I call homeopathy science). It’s a little too have-the-answer-I-want-now-lets-look-for-the-question. You know, the opposite of how science actually works. But that is a post for another day. Suffice it to say that there’s no evidence that multitasking makes one smarter, and plenty of evidence to suggest the opposite.

Another theory is those women have always had the potential for higher results, but are only now realising it.

Which sounds an awful lot like my Tesla quote from the beginning of this post. Oh Tesla, is there anything you didn’t know? Keep in mind he said this about a hundred years ago. Please excuse me while I take a moment to sigh dreamily while thinking of my favourite mad scientist:


If only I had white wings and laser eyes… Okay, I’m back.

Tesla’s quote (and I guess the second quote from the article too) is also an excellent answer to that question asked by angry dudebros everywhere: ‘Yeah, well if women are as smart as men how come they never invented anything?’ See, but then you have to bring up that word that frightens the dudebros: Privilege. If women aren’t allowed to go to school and learn things like engineering, you can’t honestly suggest that women not engineering anything noteworthy makes them stupid. Keep in mind I did say that it isn’t an honest argument. Not that dudebros wouldn’t try to use it anyway.

I know there’s a few other arguments out there as well. One is that the IQ test is flawed. We know this. Of course it’s biased towards people educated in a certain way and with a certain social background. *cough* White Caucasian males *cough* That’s the point, right? The playing field has apparently been leveled. And two, Affirmative Action. What this last one sounds like is sour grapes from someone that is so caught up in this zero sum game of boys vs. girls that they need to cast about for excuses. It almost seems like they’re suggesting the only way a woman could perform equally to a man is by cheating. That there is raw and pure sexism. Also: Fighting words.

The important thing to consider is that over the last 100 years IQ averages have been going up all around as the complexity of the world demands more of us. That means the boys and the girls are scoring better. This is a victory. Yay for education! As far as I’m concerned there is no girls-vs-boys to factor in. It’s a wonderful thing that women are showing more of their true potential. This isn’t something that should make anyone cast about for excuses and vent anger. Higher education has helped us all achieve better scores and this has got to be a good thing, right?