Main topic

CHALLENGES AND DILEMMAS OF CONTEMPORARY DEMOCRACY

HATE SPEECH AS A FORM OF POLITICAL VIOLENCE

Abstract

According to the conclusions of this paper, hate speech can be
defined as a complex and indirect form of political violence. In this case,
the complexity refers to the criterion of the number of participants and
their mutual relationship, while according to the method of violence, an
indirect relationship is apparent between the hate speech broadcasters
and the subject against whom the violence is carried out. Hate speech is
aimed to provoke intolerance, hate and violence, towards an individual
citizen or a group of people, most often due to their ethnical, religious,
sexual or political background, and to encourage and confirm such
discriminating attitudes. Although just one segment of its common
manifestations relates directly to the political views of the victim, hate
speech is an expression of extreme political standpoints, and its motives
can be defined as political. Predetermination of the victim of hate speech
can be found in their specific individual characteristic, singularity or
affiliation, as a personal peculiarity of that person or a group. Such
characteristics, as a rule, differ from the usual, major and generally
accepted social category or value, in other words, the wider culture’s
main stream. Personal characteristic of a particular person is precisely
what is of vital importance for defining hate speech, since the message
expressed in hate speech is aimed directly to frighten, insult or degrade
on the basis of race, ethnic, religion, language, gender, sexuality, political
belief, social origin, or other personal characteristics of an individual.
The genesis of hate speech is more about its recognition as such,
rather than its specific occurrence and historical development. Throughout
centuries, there has been a socially accepted practice, where the winners
in war completely destroyed their enemies, as retribution or a severe kind
for a “punishment for defeat”. In such circumstances, it is quite certain
that hate speech practically existed, but was not condemned. The political
ideology of hate-speech broadcasters is not especially significant, since it
was practically used both by radical leftists and right-wingers. However,
regardless of whether it is a “Jewpig” or “The enemies of the people”
(in the case of Holocaust or Stalin’s purges), the impression is that hate
speech is a second-degree crime. In periods of mass murders and similar
cruel crimes, hate speech goes relatively unnoticed. Nevertheless, it is
noticeable that uncontrolled hate speech serves as an announcement, that
is, an introduction to a crime of much wider proportions.

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References

PERIODICS Srpska politička misao 2/2018 2/2018 УДК 316.647.5:343.4 65-78
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