Censorship is an impulse that no true totalitarian can resist. Re-branding censorship as curtailment of “hate speech” may give it a facade of legitimacy, but it is an attack on free speech nonetheless. Consider the latest overreaches happening in the most democratic of countries:
- A conversation last September (2015) between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg was caught on a hot mic. Merkel pressed Zuckerberg to do something to suppress “anti-immigration” postings and Zuckerberg affirmed that they were working towards this.
- In January (2016) Facebook Germany launched the Orwellian sounding “Initiative for Civil Courage Online” with the mission: “To promote the civil courage displayed by organisations and grassroots activists carrying out valuable counterspeech work online.” By “counterspeech”, they mean to find and suppress free speech that contradicts the narrative of the political leadership.