HATE: Why We Should Resist It with Free Speech, Not Censorship

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In recent days, “hate speech” has gotten much attention on televised and social media. We’ve seen the term used to label language from many groups, from the alt-right to Black Lives Matter activists to the survivors of the school shooting in Parkland, FL.

What Nadine Strossen does in HATE is defend the need to protect “hate speech” because, as she states in the overview, “the cure is worse than the disease.” Strossen offers an in-depth study of the term “hate speech” itself and includes some interesting and disturbing precedents related to court cases in countries where speech—all speech—is not protected. Her point is to argue that all speech must be protected so that change can happen. She suggests the answer to “hate speech” isn’t legislation or prosecution, but more speech.

As a teacher, I love the notion that we, as a society, can be made better if we counter the worst things among us with conversation, civil discourse, and communication is a cornerstone of my class. As an American, I worry Strossen’s point may be a bit Pollyanna-esque, but I’m hopeful I’m wrong. Strossen’s book makes the case for the continued protection of “hate speech” with logic, and her credibility is above reproach. As a professor of Constitutional Law at New York Law School and a former president of the ACLU, her knowledge is deep and wide. The book can be a bit legalistic at times, which could turn some readers off, but I couldn’t put it down.


Reviewed By:

Author Nadine Strossen
Star Count 4.5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 232 pages
Publisher Oxford University Press
Publish Date 2018-May-01
ISBN 9780190859121
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue October 2018
Category Current Events & Politics
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