Subject: Re: source access vs dynamism From: Erik Naggum <email@example.com> Date: 1999/09/08 Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> * William Tanksley | I'm curious, Erik. On what grounds would you sue him? his attempts to make me look like someone who trivializes the Holocaust. if this is believed by the wrong people, I face serious loss of freedom of movement in Europe, and I risk having to deal with people who believe this and cause problems. let me illustrate what happens in the global society: German courts have sentenced foreigners for making material "available" to Germans (over the Internet) that make comparatively weak claims about some of the less researched historic events and some actual errors in the history as it has been related. Canadian courts have handed out jail terms to foreigners who have never visited their country because they have broken Canadian laws when some _Canadian_ brought their material into the country (over the Internet). the Chinese government has declared a lot of people personae non grata because of the material that were spread about Tian-an-men over the Net, more than a decade ago. I'd rather be jailed or have my freedom of movement limited for something I say or do than something some moron like Erann Gat tries to make people believe. we also know that more of his kind are loose in the world, and they won't wait to learn what anyone actually said before they decide to take action based on false accusations. on this particular issue, there are more people like him who go ballistic when they come across something that triggers their uncontrollable emotions, and some of them don't stop at murder. I don't think Erann Gat is aware of the gravity of posting false accusations about the trivialization of the Holocaust, and which risks his posting such false claims poses to his victim. we also know that some people will go ballistic regardless of what you say if you mention something negative that someone feels is hurtful to Jews. there doesn't have to be any evidence of ill will at all, either, for people who have lost their mind to do very damaging things. the publisher of the Norwegian translation of Salman Rushdie's infamous book was shot by funnymentalist Islamic activists on the street in Oslo, for instance. dealing with nutcases like Erann Gat is actually very dangerous, because _they_ think they face no risk at all and that their moral outrage is defensible, no matter the consequences for others. the courts in various countries have begun to recognize the risks involved and that it is so easy to manipulate "activists" that the spread of false information and false accusations in particular is considered a weapon. with stuff so explosive as the Holocaust, there is ample reason to be cautious. again, we must not forget that the spread of false accusations against the Jews was the core message in the anti-Jewish propaganda that led to the Holocaust. if we don't excise the tendency to accuse others falsely in highly emotive issues, there is nothing to bar us from falling pray to the same kind of horrors and evil mass movements. I assume, however, that this is something that is only obvious to people who can stomach the study of how propaganda machines work (and not available at all to people who can't even read about something the Nazis did witout feeling tainted by it), and how little people react to propaganda techniques that were successfully employed during wars to convince the local population of the righteousness of the atrocities of war against an incredibly demonized enemy. if we take away the ability to see such demons, and punish every person who falls for this most primitive of anti-intellectual behaviors in time, maybe the people who benefit so greatly from the spread of false accusations and other forms of propaganda will fail to entice enough of their population to accept war, or, to a lesser degree, to accept the peace-time propaganda machinery of no less predatory companies and their marketing departments. it is typical of someone who has learned nothing of the past to repeat it, and fail to recognize it when they do: the false accusations were made against Jews, and the purpose was to kill them all, so clearly you have to have the purpose of killing Jews before "false accusation" can be as bad again or before they recognize it. clearly the Nazis were really bad people, but if someone _else_ exploits naive people's ever-present hopes for a better future to destroy and hurt them deeply, it must be tolerated as long as they aren't _Nazis_. but the same principles are at work in small scale and large all over the place. the magnitude of the horrors have nothing to do with the principle, except that when it goes unchecked, the principle may yield horrors of _unlimited_ magnitude. Erann Gat has refused to learn from the information available from the past because he is abhorred with something that is clearly irrelevant to the issue and principles at hand, and then he goes ahead and repeats the mistakes that were made. it's an amazingly condensed history lesson. #:Erik -- it's election time in Norway. explains everything, doesn't it?