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    (Original post by Foghorn Leghorn)
    This video puts this whole thread into perspective, especially from 2:10 onwards.




    :ahee:
    You could post that on just about any thread on the Society forum.


    (Original post by Redolent)
    You're using the American definition of liberalism
    In what way?


    (Original post by mmmpie)
    It's difficult to tolerate being oppressed. I'm frequently amused by people invoking there freedom of speech in an attempt to silence objections, while they opine about denying the rights of others.

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    Freedom of speech is not an attempt to silence objections, its a means of offering an objection in the first place.


    (Original post by Bobifier)
    In this case the liberal must either be intolerant of the Christian or accept the Christian's intolerance of homosexuality. Either way someone is getting intolerated, so it might as well be the person who is themselves being intolerant.

    Furthermore, you are calling out liberals by saying that criticism of ideas they don't like is intolerant and they shouldn't do it, which is the same thing you criticise liberals for doing themselves.
    That's a circular argument because silencing the Christina's views is intolerant. Intolerance of intolerance is a ridiculous idea that hinges on the notion that you are morally better than someone. Whilst I don't agree with intolerant views, I'll fight to the death for their right to be expressed. Tolerance of intolerance may seem oxymoronic, but you retain any integrity for not silencing your opponent.

    (Original post by Blackburn_Allen)
    This is something I have said for a long, long time. What you tend to find is that these "Modern Liberals" usually hail from middle to upper class backgrounds, where they have not really suffered the consequences of many things they campaign for.

    If I am to put across my opinions to my friends in University I am called a racist or intolerant. The fact is, I'm not. I don't judge a person on the colour of their skin, I judge them on the way they lead their lives, yet when I say I cannot stand rganised religion I am called a bigot and told I should respect their right to believe. Then when I say I oppose mass immigration I am a racist even though race has absolutely nothing to do with it. It seems as though you cannot have a remotely right-wing idea without being branded the next Nick Griffin.
    It happens sadly. I think at university especially because people are so desperate to be part of something/belong to a social group that they go off the deep end with trying to force others to believe what they want/brand others as some kind of monster for not agreeing with them.
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    (Original post by Kiss)
    Freedom of speech is not an attempt to silence objections, its a means of offering an objection in the first place.
    That was my point. But there are always people who, if you argue with them say things like "you're denying my freedom of speech".

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    (Original post by Kiss)
    In what way?
    You are conflating it with an authoritarian left wing. It's something Americans like to do in order to discredit liberalism as a wider movement.

    Away from America "modern liberalism" is often used simply as a synonym for "social liberalism" as opposed to "classical liberalism", the reality there is no reason why one cannot be both a modern/social liberal (believe the state should intervene to protect its vulnerable) and a supporter of maximised free speech
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    (Original post by Kiss)
    You could post that on just about any thread on the Society forum.



    I'm only pulling your leg.
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    (Original post by Kiss)
    I'm so sick and tired of the amount of *******s I see on Facebook, or hear in day to day life on campus about how 'tolerant' liberals are because frankly they are not. I cannot generalise about all and every liberal because that is not fair, but I do want to argue the existence of one particular strain of liberalism which has flourished wildly across the western world.


    I want to first establish two camps of liberals, with the latter of which I am referring to as the liberals who I despise. Classical Liberals are more closer to a libertarian position - they advocate equality on all fronts, allow a debate for any and all opponents, and believe in free expression for all. Modern Liberals, on the other hand, believe in equality but take a much more hard-lined approach, and ignore rights for expression when it comes to those they disagree with. They do not believe in giving those with bigoted views 'a platform for debate' - in other words, they are right; you can't argue with them; don't try.


    Having previously been a modern liberal, I can tell you that it is easy to get swept up in their dogma, and very easy to think what you are doing is the morally right thing for everyone. But when I began to question things a little further and examine perspectives from a neutral position, I was immediately labelled a 'racist' and 'sexist'.


    Modern liberals do not like free thinkers, and their first go-to in any argument is to immediately suggest or openly say you are a bigot of some kind. This is largely because it is an easy option but also it makes the audience turn against you:





    It comes as a surprise that many liberal groups are now turning to violence as a means of getting their message across. Groups such as the UAF and Smash-The-EDL advocate rather aggressive and hypocritical messages in order to ostracise their opponents and rally support:





    No platform for debate with bigots? Essentially they're saying it's okay not to offer democracy to those who are willing to debate with the UAF. And lest you disagree with them you are automatically a homophobe, a misogynist, you hate blacks, and any other thing under the sun they can think of. Apparently speech and the right to debate is now a weapon for their opponents. Rather ironic considering they think they are against fascism when you only have to scroll down a tiny section to see another message advocating a desire to ban their opponents voice, rather like this person who seems to think that human rights should be rewritten:





    What is worst is that modern liberals seem to think they have the cure to the world and knows what it, and everyone else on the planet, needs. Its one thing to assume you have the moral high ground in one in their own country, but to try to force others to change and impose their views on other country's is nothing short of imperialism. I think this sums up this attitude towards children in another country:





    'If you are a straight, white, male then you are automatically the most privileged person in the world.' - I heard those exact words coming from perhaps the most posh, rich girl I have ever had the displeasure of meeting, who has a stark cheek telling me that I'm privileged; simply being a white straight male does not guarantee any privilege. White guilt is almost a necessary component of being a modern liberal - if you don't feel shameful of your ancestor's past actions (actions which you haven't committed yourself) you are racist. And if so much as hint that immigration is unsustainable at its current rate then you are also labelled as a racist.




    To sum up, I find the modern liberal agenda a hypocritical, fascist and rather aggressive new political drive that is not focused upon equality or democracy for those it opposes; they are intolerant of those who disagree with them. It is a severely flawed philosophy that is becoming ever more prominent, and revels in PC drivel. Am I the only one who thinks that modern liberals are hypocrites? What do you think?
    You're confusing classical liberalism with liberal neutrality and modern liberalism with 'liberal totalitarianism', to use Starkey's coinage. It's perfectly possible to be a modern liberal and believe in liberal neutrality, i.e. state only relevant to preventing infringements on rights of others, just as it is possible to be a classical liberal, or supporter of any political ideology in fact, and obnoxiously force your views onto others.
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    (Original post by Tuerin)
    It's perfectly possible to be a modern liberal and believe in liberal neutrality, i.e. state only relevant to preventing infringements on rights of others, just as it is possible to be a classical liberal, or supporter of any political ideology in fact, and obnoxiously force your views onto others.
    No it isn't, hence why they do not tolerate anyone who disagrees with them. The whole notion of 'forcing tolerance' is contrary to the nature of tolerance itself, thus they go against their own ethos, and thus why I draw the distinction between the Classical Liberal perspective and the modern, totalitarian liberal perspective.
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    (Original post by Kiss)
    No it isn't, hence why they do not tolerate anyone who disagrees with them. The whole notion of 'forcing tolerance' is contrary to the nature of tolerance itself, thus they go against their own ethos, and thus why I draw the distinction between the Classical Liberal perspective and the modern, totalitarian liberal perspective.
    It's not totalitarian to impose rules about how people interact; that's basically what society is.

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    (Original post by mmmpie)
    It's not totalitarian to impose rules about how people interact; that's basically what society is.

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    You are completely missing the point. Liberalism itself hinges on the notion that every person has an opinion and that person has the right to voice it - yet the modern liberal seems to think it is okay to censor one group of people so long as it benefits their own viewpoint. That's wrong.

    It is hypocritical to class yourself as liberal whilst promoting the censoring of organisations like the EDL and the BNP.
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    (Original post by Kiss)
    No it isn't, hence why they do not tolerate anyone who disagrees with them. The whole notion of 'forcing tolerance' is contrary to the nature of tolerance itself, thus they go against their own ethos, and thus why I draw the distinction between the Classical Liberal perspective and the modern, totalitarian liberal perspective.
    The gaping flaw in this argument is the assumption that all modern liberals 'do not tolerate anyone who disagrees with them'. This is plainly a mindless, sweeping generalisation with only your own personal anecdotal evidence to support it. I would like to think I'm living proof that modern liberalism and liberal neutrality are harmonious possibilities. The second emboldened text understands this.
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    (Original post by Blackburn_Allen)
    You are completely missing the point. Liberalism itself hinges on the notion that every person has an opinion and that person has the right to voice it - yet the modern liberal seems to think it is okay to censor one group of people so long as it benefits their own viewpoint. That's wrong.

    It is hypocritical to class yourself as liberal whilst promoting the censoring of organisations like the EDL and the BNP.
    Provide evidence of this action which is isolated to modern liberals and this accusation may be taken seriously
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    (Original post by Blackburn_Allen)
    You are completely missing the point. Liberalism itself hinges on the notion that every person has an opinion and that person has the right to voice it - yet the modern liberal seems to think it is okay to censor one group of people so long as it benefits their own viewpoint. That's wrong.

    It is hypocritical to class yourself as liberal whilst promoting the censoring of organisations like the EDL and the BNP.
    It is not okay to censor for the benefit of an ideology, and I've seldom if ever encountered anyone calling themselves any sort of liberal who would disagree. It can be, if that's the least harm/greatest benefit for people in general. That is a more complicated business with lots of complex ethical arguments to be had, and there is much danger of abuse down that road, so in general we should avoid censorship in all forms.

    The point of liberalism is to let people get on with their lives without unnecessary interference; to lay down a minimal set of rules for people to interact by, preferably with some kind of justification behind them. Freedom of thought and expression can follow from that, and historically did. Fundamental rights guarantees are a fairly modern addition.

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    (Original post by Tuerin)
    Provide evidence of this action which is isolated to modern liberals and this accusation may be taken seriously
    I think if we look at the OP you can see clear evidence to suggest this is true. Then we have the debacle of the attempt to stop Nick Griffin from appearing on the BBC. I can speak from personal experience when I say I know people that fit in the category that the OP labels "modern liberal": the same people are all for freedom of speech and expression, until it comes to someone voicing an opinion that is directly opposite to theirs. I say "I disagree with mass immigration", they say "racist" and attempt to completely block my argument with the repeated accusation of me being bigoted. I think a lot of you are missing the point of the topic: it isn't to disparage liberalism, more to promote the true ethics of it and try to take away the negative aspect that seems to have come around the past few years. Modern Liberalism seems to take home in organisations such as the UAF where violence is met with violence and any attempt to argue against them is met with a protest or a petition to make sure your voice is not heard.

    (Original post by mmmpie)
    It is not okay to censor for the benefit of an ideology, and I've seldom if ever encountered anyone calling themselves any sort of liberal who would disagree. It can be, if that's the least harm/greatest benefit for people in general. That is a more complicated business with lots of complex ethical arguments to be had, and there is much danger of abuse down that road, so in general we should avoid censorship in all forms.

    The point of liberalism is to let people get on with their lives without unnecessary interference; to lay down a minimal set of rules for people to interact by, preferably with some kind of justification behind them. Freedom of thought and expression can follow from that, and historically did. Fundamental rights guarantees are a fairly modern addition.

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    Who is to judge what is a harm to others? Many years ago people spoke out against the common trends and where in turn persecuted by the majority yet many of their ideas now sit as common practice and accepted as progressive and politically correct. No one has the right to silence others for any reason.

    The point of liberalism, in my view, is that everyone is equal and that everyone has the right to be heard. Liberalism has been twisted in recent years into this ideology that we must apologise for our past, we must hate ourselves for what we done, we must silence those that disagree with liberalism and we must do so by any means necessary and lastly we must impose our beliefs on others at every available opportunity. Modern Liberalism is threatening to ruin the liberal movement for everybody; modern liberalism isn't truly liberal at all.
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    (Original post by politixx)
    We have a right to free speech unless it is a direct threat to national security.
    Bizarre comment.

    What about conspiracy to commit crime? Do you have the right to discuss how to commit a crime (eg: plan a crime) with others? Do you disagree with legal punishments for conspiracy to murder/fraud/burglary/terrorism etc? Only terrorism? Is threat to personal security not an issue?

    What about slander? Do you think it is right that one(s) should be able to freely express/publish known lies in order to defame another individual(s)?

    What about harassment, eg: of a sexual or threatening nature? Do you have the write to talk about sexual acts with small child for your sexual pleasure? Do you have the right to verbally harass or threaten someone? Do you disagree with restraining orders taken out on these grounds? Does a female employer have the right to call all of her male workers "penis" instead of by their name?

    Not to comment on anything else in this thread, but the ridiculous notion that we have ever had, or indeed should have complete or near-complete freedom of speech continues to astound me.

    People don't have the right not to be offended. However, restrictions to freedom of speech/expression are not based on the grounds of not causing offence. They are based on the concept of avoiding harm and/or infringement on other people's right to live without harassment/threats/defamation/conspiracy etc.

    More often I see people with offensive/bigoted views citing "my freedom of speech!" as the grounds for suppressing criticism of their horrible opinions, certainly on this site. Freedom of speech does/should not imply freedom to speak without being criticised, nor does/should it cover freedom to use words/expression to cause infringement on others' rights as outlined in the examples above.

    I consider tolerance to be allowing others to conduct their private lives as they wish, providing this does not infringe upon others' rights in private and public. Others' may define it differently, but at least I can say that is a value I apply to all, equally. Whereas many people who complain of "intolerant liberals" (perhaps not the OP, who does raise some valid points) seem to want a higher tolerance applied to themselves than others. They wish to go about their private lives as they wish, but feel somehow that this includes infringing on others' abilities to do the same. They regard tolerance to mean "I want my desire to restrict others to be tolerated", but are happy to claim that it is wrong for others to restrict them. There is no equality in their application of "tolerance" yet they have the cheek to accuse others of hypocrisy.
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    (Original post by Rhadamanthus)
    I'm not sure what you're trying to say. I was making the point that many liberals (who often speak of tolerance and understanding, and who sometimes go so far as to endorse moral relativism) are completely intolerant of those who oppose the liberals' own ideas of how society ought to be ordered. Thus, if someone is a Christian and cannot accept the idea of gay marriage, it is often the very liberals who stress tolerance who are most vocal in criticising this person.
    Exactly. Someone I know once said that they were a Christian. First question asked 'what do you think about gay marriage

    An ex-friend of mine never spoke to me again because I said that I wouldn't tolerate by people if I lived in the 1960's, and was brought up in that time.
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    (Original post by Pigling)
    Bizarre comment.

    What about conspiracy to commit crime? Do you have the right to discuss how to commit a crime (eg: plan a crime) with others? Do you disagree with legal punishments for conspiracy to murder/fraud/burglary/terrorism etc? Only terrorism? Is threat to personal security not an issue?

    What about slander? Do you think it is right that one(s) should be able to freely express/publish known lies in order to defame another individual(s)?

    What about harassment, eg: of a sexual or threatening nature? Do you have the write to talk about sexual acts with small child for your sexual pleasure? Do you have the right to verbally harass or threaten someone? Do you disagree with restraining orders taken out on these grounds? Does a female employer have the right to call all of her male workers "penis" instead of by their name?

    Not to comment on anything else in this thread, but the ridiculous notion that we have ever had, or indeed should have complete or near-complete freedom of speech continues to astound me.

    People don't have the right not to be offended. However, restrictions to freedom of speech/expression are not based on the grounds of not causing offence. They are based on the concept of avoiding harm and/or infringement on other people's right to live without harassment/threats/defamation/conspiracy etc.

    More often I see people with offensive/bigoted views citing "my freedom of speech!" as the grounds for suppressing criticism of their horrible opinions, certainly on this site. Freedom of speech does/should not imply freedom to speak without being criticised, nor does/should it cover freedom to use words/expression to cause infringement on others' rights as outlined in the examples above.
    Those should all be legal i'm not interested whether a person is planning a crime or not i am only interested if they actually carry it out. You can lie about someone yes it is up to the people listening to determine its validity. Talking doesn't harm anybody even if it is sexual.
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    (Original post by politixx)
    Those should all be legal i'm not interested whether a person is planning a crime or not i am only interested if they actually carry it out. You can lie about someone yes it is up to the people listening to determine its validity. Talking doesn't harm anybody even if it is sexual.
    I completely disagree. I'd imagine you would disagree with yourself here as well should you ever have the misfortune of:

    - Acquiring a stalker who threatens you and your family. These people (whilst many of them quite piteous themselves) literally ruin lives, end careers, result in suicide and the laws protecting their victims are already insufficient.
    - Being falsely accused of rape
    - Being burgled by an organised gang but only the rookie idiot they get to actually carry out the act is punished or controlled
    - Your child comes back and tells you about the adult who has disturbed them (whether talk is sexual, threatening, excessively frightening, bullying etc). If you think children (and indeed adults) can't be harmed by words you are quite wrong, it is a recognised form of abuse.

    I can't say anything further, I think you're being obtuse.

    EDIT: Need I add another example. Your private/secure details are stolen. Sure, you'd agree that the person who stole them is guilty of intrusion/theft, but if they are distributed before this person is apprehended, do third parties have the right to publish this stolen information for profit, knowing the serious loss you will incur as a result? Intellectual property (including ideas, personal details, secure details) deserves protection does it not? Or can you only understand the material? Is honest reputation (which could easily be destroyed without laws to protect it) less real or valuable than a material possession vandalised, ruined or stolen?
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    (Original post by Blackburn_Allen)
    I think if we look at the OP you can see clear evidence to suggest this is true. Then we have the debacle of the attempt to stop Nick Griffin from appearing on the BBC. I can speak from personal experience when I say I know people that fit in the category that the OP labels "modern liberal": the same people are all for freedom of speech and expression, until it comes to someone voicing an opinion that is directly opposite to theirs. I say "I disagree with mass immigration", they say "racist" and attempt to completely block my argument with the repeated accusation of me being bigoted. I think a lot of you are missing the point of the topic: it isn't to disparage liberalism, more to promote the true ethics of it and try to take away the negative aspect that seems to have come around the past few years. Modern Liberalism seems to take home in organisations such as the UAF where violence is met with violence and any attempt to argue against them is met with a protest or a petition to make sure your voice is not heard.



    Who is to judge what is a harm to others? Many years ago people spoke out against the common trends and where in turn persecuted by the majority yet many of their ideas now sit as common practice and accepted as progressive and politically correct. No one has the right to silence others for any reason.

    The point of liberalism, in my view, is that everyone is equal and that everyone has the right to be heard. Liberalism has been twisted in recent years into this ideology that we must apologise for our past, we must hate ourselves for what we done, we must silence those that disagree with liberalism and we must do so by any means necessary and lastly we must impose our beliefs on others at every available opportunity. Modern Liberalism is threatening to ruin the liberal movement for everybody; modern liberalism isn't truly liberal at all.
    I did say there were complex ethical questions about legitimizing censorship, and that it is open to abuse. Nevertheless you can (and I do) argue that if some speech can be harmful then some restrictions can be justified.

    The particular twisting that you describe only seems to exist in the conservative press, which likes to scaremonger and mislead - that seems to be all the press does these days. We must impose our beliefs as little as possible, we must not silence dissent; but we must accept that we need a degree of pragmatism, that we cannot totally avoid imposing liberalism on others.

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    (Original post by mmmpie)
    Perhaps that is a better word. It's part of the same old dilemma though: can we tolerate intolerance? Can a liberal society permit illiberal elements within itself?

    Up to a point I think we can and should. Dissent is not necessarily a bad thing. But there are more principles involved than just being politically permissive, and a balance needs to be struck there.



    National security seems suspiciously close to politically expedient to me. I prefer demonstrable harm as a test.



    Just to clarify what I mean about harmful speech: it's offensive and distasteful, but not harmful, to express xenophobic, racist, sexist, homophobic or any other sentiment. No form of political or ideological dissent is directly harmful.

    It is harmful to encourage lynchings of black people, or to tell gay kids they are sick or evil and have no right to exist, or to threaten women with violence if they turn up at a polling station. I'm talking about demonstrable harm to people, not simply bruised feelings or damage to ideals and ideologies.

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    I agree with you about the freedom of speech/protection of society problem. I believe in freedom of speech, but not when advocating harm. If someone wants to call me a *****, or whatever else they can come up with, good for them, have a great day. But if they're saying I should be killed, or attacked? Not okay.
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    (Original post by Calpurnia)
    This is definitely something I've found recently. As a follower of various "liberal" groups, I've started to spot something that seems like an extreme narrowing of perspective, rather than any sort of broadening. My personal favourite is a group, who whenever you click a link to their site, asks if you're for or against "discrimination of all people regardless of race/class/sexuality". You have the option to click "agree" or "disagree", or close the question box. I've recently stopped closing the question box and started clicking "disagree" because it's such a stupid, borderline offensive question.

    All I can really say on the matter is that if "modern"/"student" liberalism can be a vehicle by which society can be improved, through increased awareness of issues, then I'm not gonna complain too much about it.
    This is interesting. I consider myself a modern liberal (athough that's just semantics) but perfectly disagree with any of the below:

    (Original post by Blackburn_Allen)
    we must apologise for our past, we must hate ourselves for what we done, we must silence those that disagree with liberalism and we must do so by any means necessary and lastly we must impose our beliefs on others at every available opportunity.
    (Although I would add we must recognise the past but not hold ourselves personally responsible)

    Maybe it is because I have never visited/followed liberalist sites/groups that I have not particularly encountered such extremism/loss of perspective. I think it is a problem to an extent (and have no doubt that such problem "liberals" exist), but not one which undermines good ideals underpinning/associated with liberalism. Whenever someone bothers to make a website (or any other form of effectively a cult where everyone agrees), its an indication they're more likely to get carried away whatever their ideology or intent. That's human nature.

    Anti-liberals as it were, don't all fall into the same boat and it's often a matter of semantics. But to offer a counterpoint to this thread, I frequently encounter the irritating phenomenon of making point A, which I (attempt to) justify. Then point A is associated with the demon "liberalism" whereby I am criticised for exaggerated strawman points B, C, and D which I have never made. For me to then be accused of the one who is shouting down, and unfairly labelling others without considering their actual views, is almost enough to choke on.

    I think strawmanning of liberalism (particularly by newspapers) has to be recognised when discussing this.

    Then again maybe that (strawmanning) is exactly the same as what I'm doing right now, but I don't mean to
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    (Original post by mmmpie)
    I did say there were complex ethical questions about legitimizing censorship, and that it is open to abuse. Nevertheless you can (and I do) argue that if some speech can be harmful then some restrictions can be justified.

    The particular twisting that you describe only seems to exist in the conservative press, which likes to scaremonger and mislead - that seems to be all the press does these days. We must impose our beliefs as little as possible, we must not silence dissent; but we must accept that we need a degree of pragmatism, that we cannot totally avoid imposing liberalism on others.

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    I think a perfect example of modern liberalism is in your post there. To dismiss an entire press-group as misleading and scaremongerers is in itself an attempt to completely squash their claims and opinions: perhaps without knowing you, yourself, are exactly what this topic is about. What you consider misleading someone considers as truth and it is up to you to attempt to argue your point across, not simply dismiss it (as many dismiss the Daily Mail as utter crap purely because they disagree with what it publishes) and brush it under the carpet. This leads to a broad group of people that go unheard, which in turn leads to a large group of angry people and that's what results in extreme forms of communication, i.e: EDL.

    Again, I ask of you, who decides what speech is "harmful"? Are the anti-Monarchy campaigns that a lot of liberals support harmful? Is the opposition to gay marriage classed as "harmful" to society? Where do we draw the line at harmful?


    (Original post by Pigling)
    This is interesting. I consider myself a modern liberal (athough that's just semantics) but perfectly disagree with any of the below:



    (Although I would add we must recognise the past but not hold ourselves personally responsible)

    Maybe it is because I have never visited/followed liberalist sites/groups that I have not particularly encountered such extremism/loss of perspective. I think it is a problem to an extent (and have no doubt that such problem "liberals" exist), but not one which undermines good ideals underpinning/associated with liberalism. Whenever someone bothers to make a website (or any other form of effectively a cult where everyone agrees), its an indication they're more likely to get carried away whatever their ideology or intent. That's human nature.

    Anti-liberals as it were, don't all fall into the same boat and it's often a matter of semantics. But to offer a counterpoint to this thread, I frequently encounter the irritating phenomenon of making point A, which I (attempt to) justify. Then point A is associated with the demon "liberalism" whereby I am criticised for exaggerated strawman points B, C, and D which I have never made. For me to then be accused of the one who is shouting down, and unfairly labelling others without considering their actual views, is almost enough to choke on.

    I think strawmanning of liberalism (particularly by newspapers) has to be recognised when discussing this.

    Then again maybe that (strawmanning) is exactly the same as what I'm doing right now, but I don't mean to
    I agree with your final paragraph. Most liberals tend to get put into the same group purely because it seems that the largest "liberal group", as it were, is now the "Modern Liberal". You only have to go onto most university campuses to notice that this form of liberalism is quickly becoming the common thing and it is quickly tainting the classic liberal as one of them. I don't think organisations such as the UAF help the cause either. They flock under the banner of liberalism and democracy yet are renown for violence, censorship and chaos.
 
 
 
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