The rub there Swedish Reader was there was actual harm to other individuals.
These cases (in the article0 seem like potential harm. Your case that you speak
of is slander/libel and not protected free speech even under the First Amendment
as the girls speech was probably harmful to the reputations of others and
untrue. It could be argued that the cases of this article present a clear and
present danger to others but that is extremely thin here. It wasn't a
speech held in public where people could riot a real threat for violence from
others existed. Since it is a public forum, I suppose the those making these
posting could (and should) be monitored closely by the authorities to see if
they ACT on their threats. But that's the rub, they have not in my view
committed a crime. Perhaps their speech is (very) bad judgment but we
don't put people in jail for that. We don't put people in jail for
bad thoughts and feelings, it requires action or in your case in Sweden when
their speech actually damages others. To me, this is a key difference.
We recently had a similar case here in Sweden. Two girls, 15 and 16 years old,
were convicted in court for slandering 38 other teenagers on Instagram. When
these slanderous comments were first posted on Instagram, there were actually
riots in the town where these kids live. The girls were sentenced to juvenile
detention and to pay damages totaling 570 000 kronor, equivalent to over 85 000
dollars. Their parents were deemed responsible to pay these damages, which is
something none of them can do - both girls come from single parent households
with no extra resources. Words can indeed do serious damage, not only to others
but also to the person uttering/posting them.
LVIS wrote: A Russian proverb: "If you think it, don't say it. If you
say it, don't write it. If you write, don't be surprised."And that attitude (and it is a very real attitude among Russians) was
spawned by generations of terror from a government that sought to control every
aspect of Soviet life. That Russian proverb is wise. Unfortunately, it is
rapidly becoming applicable in the US as well.Alexander Pushkin,
another Russian wrote: "A tedious season they await, who hear November at
the gate." Here in the US, we stand at the gates of November.
These bogus charges bring tax monies to the courts and all those who feed from
that trough. And they give the anti - american agencies - TSA - NSA - HomeLand
Security more power and one day that power will be overwhelming - ie even if you
THINK of something that is against their law - you will be carted off. Freedoms have all but disappeared in the USA - the police state is here, and
the alphabet gang is growing larger by the day - ie - The TSA - NSA - FBI - ATF
- FDA - HomeLand - CIA - DEA - Do your best to vote in those that
truly believe in our Constitution - Our Civil Liberties and our Amendments -
Start at your local levels, up to those in Washington.
Parents need to redouble their efforts to teach children that words do hurt and
to try and speak and think in ways that are less threatening.That
much said, those who believe themselves great wielders of power would do well to
measure out at least half as much mercy as they pretend to exact justice. When
justice must flow in the shape of punishment, ultimately greater trouble will
Freedom of speech? What is that?
@Sasha88:The problem is that we've come to view prison as the
punishment of choice, rather than the punishment of last resort, used only when
everything else has failed. And if the sentence isn't so long that the
prisoner has little or no chance of successfully rejoining society and
succeeding in staying out of trouble afterwards, we whine that he's just
"gotten a slap on the wrist". As a result, we have the highest per
capita rate of incarceration in the world, the largest number of prisoners in
the world, and impose longer sentences than any other western democracy. It also
means that we're spending more money each year on prisons than we do on
education. As someone once said, if you think education is expensive, look at
the cost of ignorance.
This sounds like that movie "Minority Report."
19 is still a kid even if the law says he is an adult. Society treats him as a
kid, I mean he is still not allowed to drink a bear for Pete's sake. I have
no problem with investigating threats but if there is no evident threat then
common sense on the adults side needs to be used. Do we really need to ruin
these kids lives and also burden the tax-payer with the cost of years of
incarceration plus the cost of that man when he re-enters society years later in
no telling what kind of mental state. If you want to create a real terrorist
then throw an innocent kid in prison for a few years and see what comes out the
other end. This is supposed to be a free country but it's not by a long
shot. The constitution is consistently ignored and the prisons are over-flowing.
There are more people per capita in American prisons than there are in any other
country in the world. Russia is 8th. Do you really think that Americans are more
criminal than anybody else? This is what happens when you privatize the prison
Increased attention and even surveillance I can understand. But
**incarceration** for merely uttering or writing something that is,
unquestionably, stupid, seem to be even **more** than unquestionably stupid. I
think it's unconstitutional!
@ruthey01 Whether they mean it or not is important. It is the crux of a legal
case. Intent, or lack thereof, is the basis of whether or not speech is allowed
or is criminal.
These young men threatened innocent lives. Whether they meant it or not is not
important. If they could have followed through with their words, how many
"bleeding heart liberals" would be screaming at the government for not
doing something before the deed was done. Is anyone out there old enough to
remember Charles Manson?? His boasts of plans weren't listened to before
he went on his killing spree. Sharon Tate, her unborn child and several other
people in different locations were brutally and ritually massacred.
kolob1 Merely buying a gun or asking about it at a gun show is
not the same thing as threatening to harm innocent people. Also contrary to the
liberal fairy tale the vast majority of "perps" don't buy their
guns at gun shows!
This is insane. There is no law against what a human being speak or believe,
unless it infringes upon some other man or woman's rights. This is just a
way for the corporate united states to enrich itself off of the misfortune of
our children.Who will the $250,000 go to? Where is the injured
party? Surely they are assuming or claiming that the government has been injured
as a result of the comments. How long will we stand by and allow those
corporate bosses to raid road our children.As I said years ago,
"Today it is the Moorish children who are suffering, tomorrow, it will their
own who will become the victims." That day has come. Satan is no respector
kolob1, I agree with most of what you said, however, a 19 year old is not a
child. He is an adult who can vote, join the military and own a gun, therefore
he can be held accountable for his words.I think people have got to
learn that the internet means that "schoolyard taunting" behaviors will
be seen by a wide array of people, many of them not incline to dismiss them,
particularly since shootings are practically the way anymore to insure your 15
minutes of fame and to go out in a blaze of glory. If I thought I could prevent
a horror, such as Sandy Hook, from happening then yes, I'm going to report
some foul mouthed brat's online ravings.
Whatever happened to freedom of speech? My kids say "You are Dead!" all
of the time while playing games (including online games). There is no intent to
actually kill the other person.I hope one of these guys will stand
up for their rights to help the Gov't understand that we will not allow the
gov't to bully us.I understand that you cannot yell
"Fire" in a movie - but that is not what is happening here. It is a
very slippery slope to travel down when we try to suppress others freedoms, just
because we don't agree with what is being said.It is time (once
again) to stand up to the un-needed federal laws that goes against the
It's amazing how, after a national shooting , we jump all over our kids for
uttering WORDS and yet we double down on the words "give me that gun"
when uttered at our gun shows. The words "How many can it fire ?",
"How many can it hold in the magazine?" have no significance. Children
playing violent war games uttering words cause us more grief than perps buying
the weapons that can do the most damage. Maybe it is because the child
can't fight back, like the illegal immigrant.
Where are the parents?
A Russian proverb:"If you think it, don't say it. If you
say it, don't write it. If you write, don't be surprised."
Pillault pled guilty about ten days ago and is now undergoing a court ordered
psychiatric exam prior to sentencing.