December 18, 2014

"This whole thing is just scary... It’s emails, it’s your private stuff. And the whole town is scared . . . nobody knows what to do."

"You say the wrong thing — you see what happened to [Sterling]... I’m not defending what Sterling said at all, but if that’s not the First Amendment then what the [bleep] is? And what did he say, ‘I don’t want my girlfriend hanging out with black basketball players’? Me neither!"

Said Chris Rock. 

64 comments:

cubanbob said...

Now that their stuff come back to bite them on the ass Hollywood has rediscovered the 1st amendment.

Alexander said...

Well see - that's the problem. If he really is pro free speech, he would defend what Sterling said. But then again, the left has never been pro freedom of speech or freedom of ideas... so it's not really a surprise that they wouldn't fight for their fig leaf.

And frankly, screw 'em to the wall. Hollywood's raison d'etre for the past fifty years has been to destroy a differing spirit, morale, and culture: I won't shed a tear over a bully being slapped down by a bigger bully.

Where was Chris Rock and Hollywood when it was Zimmerman's or Wilson's addresses being let out? Or the attacks on Joe the Plumber? Or the snooping around Sarah Palin's house? Tea Party IRS attacks? Or the Firefox debacle?

You idiots not only didn't speak out, you were part of the lynch mob. And now someone has turned the game on you... and now you want to lament that nobody is left to speak for you.

Kristian Holvoet said...

"If he really is pro free speech, he would defend what Sterling said"

No. Just no.

One (Sterling, Rock, Streisand, Rush, whomever) should be able to say it without fear of loss of life or liberty. But I am free to mock or ignore them as I please. Defending both sides is defending freedom of speech.

Hagar said...

Good for Chris Rock.
It's getting bad when comedians seem to be the only sane people left, but at least it is a spark of sanity left living.

Jay Vogt said...

Mr. Rock is a smart guy, but sorry it's not "the f**k a first amendment thing".

MadisonMan said...

I think he is defending Sterling. Doesn't he say he agrees with him? (So do I, except I'll make it my daughter, not my girlfriend).

The new Captcha is interesting, btw.

RonF said...

Ah HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

Gotta love it. I've been in I.T. since before e-mail got out of the labs and academia and into businesses. One thing we learned VERY QUICKLY was that you never, ever, ever put something into an e-mail that you did not want to end up a) in your boss' inbox or b) on the front page of the New York Times.

But these clowns style themselves as masters of the universe and figure they're above such petty concerns. Good. Love to see people who hold themselves up as so superior in cultural taste and politics exposed as being vulgar, sexist and racist. And, frankly, stupid.

Alexander said...

Yeah, but Sterling just wasn't 'mocked' or 'ignored', now was he? Just like Eich didn't 'decide to resign'.

So yes, unless you're willing to actually defend what Sterling said, given the attacks made against him then you're not pro freedom of speech.

RonF said...

The First Amendment says that you can say whatever you please without the government stopping you. It does NOT say that you do not have to suffer consequences from private individuals. If people read what you say and decide "She's an asshole, I'm not going to do business with her and I'm certainly not going to invite her to parties anymore", the First Amendment has not been violated.

MadisonMan said...

Who is that woman introducing Rock in the video -- and who in Earth let her out of the house with her hair like that? It looks absolutely terrible and greasy!

Robert Cook said...

If he really is pro free speech, he would defend what Sterling said."

No. One who is pro-free speech does not defend statements one disagrees with; one defends the speaker's right to say them, an important distinction.

(This is the reason the ACLU has defended the right of American Nazis to hold public rallies, even though the certainly do not defend the content of the Nazi message.)

Robert Cook said...

"But then again, the left has never been pro freedom of speech or freedom of ideas..."

Boy, you really are misinformed.

Big Mike said...

Boy, you really are misinformed.

No, sir, the misinformed individual is yourself.

paminwi said...

RC: all you have to do is look at the current Marquette University "free "speech" issue and know that the quoted statement in your 10:38 post is completely true.

Boy, you really are misinformed about the "new rules" on free speech used by liberals these days!

tim maguire said...

Robert Cook said..."But then again, the left has never been pro freedom of speech or freedom of ideas..."

Boy, you really are misinformed.


"But then again, [today's] left has never been pro freedom of speech or freedom of ideas..."

Does that read better? Because of course, you are right. The left once did defend these things, but the left that defended these things today calls itself conservative.

Robert Cook said...

"...the left that defended these things today calls itself conservative."

GaaaHahahahaha!

Michael said...

Robert Cook is correct. The left was once a bastion of free speech. Now they are at the vanguard of safe speech, of trigger warnings, of shouting down their opponents, of uninviting those with the wrong ideas. Cook is right. The left was at one time, forty years or more ago, very much in support of free speech.

Shanna said...

Their is a difference between freedom of speech as a legal, defined by the constitution issue, and having a general culture where one is free to speak their opinions without being hounded out of their jobs and the public square. We used to reserve this for serious offenses, desire to kill others and the like, and now it's been dumbed down and that IS a problem.

buwaya puti said...

The case of the left being against free speech is arguable either way, depending on ones definition of the left, going back at least to the French Revolution. More importantly it depends on whether the left is in power or not.
There was always a powerful totalitarian stream in left wing movements. Not every leftist ever had such inclinations, but as it has usually turned out, the more powerful and effective groups generally did. When leftists actually obtained power, they normally suppressed free speech even within their parties. There are many cases - well, its almost a convention by this point - of leftist intellectuals dismay at the ruthlessness of their more practical brethren, come the day.
A classic illustration of this is the tragedy of Maxim Gorky.
Illusions can continue as long as the left has limited power, but not after it has taken power.

Gordon said...

Goodness, yes, in 1963 the left was all about free speech. That's because the leftists felt their own speech was not being given sufficient attention. Thus, they demanded the opportunity to use amplification and access to publications they didn't own.

Once they had control of the apparatus, the issue became how to justify banning "hate speech," which is any speech opposing theirs.

Brando said...

"So yes, unless you're willing to actually defend what Sterling said, given the attacks made against him then you're not pro freedom of speech."

I don't think you have to defend WHAT he had to say so much as his right to say it.

And none of this is First Amendment--we're not talking about government action. But the principle of freedom of speech generally should be about open discussion, and criticizing what we disagree with, but not trying to destroy people just because they said something offensive. It all depends on the circumstances, though--if what the person says actually prevents them from being able to do their job (say a judge making racist comments indicating he will have bias in his decisions) then that's a different story.

Michael K said...

"Blogger Robert Cook said...
"But then again, the left has never been pro freedom of speech or freedom of ideas..."

Boy, you really are misinformed."

Joseph Stalin and Vladimir Lenin are unavailable for comment. Castro is not talking Chavez is dead.

Even Walter Duranty is not around.

Hagar said...

"Liberal" and "progressive" are very different animals.

mikee said...

Upon first glance, I wondered if this post was a promotion for the new season of Archer, with Sterling doing his usual bit, "If you want North Koreans, that's how you get North Koreans!"

Anonymous said...

I'm glad to hear Chris Rock speak up like this, but we need more of it. Chris Rock has always seemed like a pretty decent fellow along these lines, but just not outspoken about it (Wise, considering the way Hollyweird reacts).

Even his funny little video on how not to get a beat down by the cops was along these lines.

Plus, he seems to be in fine company with other Saturday Night Live alumni, many of whom almost seem to be Right Wing Republicans when compared to the rest of that town.

Achilles said...

I just watched Captain America The Winter Soldier last night.

It is very creepy at this point.

gerry said...

The left was at one time, forty years or more ago, very much in support of free speech.

Western liberalism used to defend free speech rights heroically. Not so much National Socialists (who burned books and killed people for speaking anything but the Party line),Soviet socialists, who murdered millions for disagreeing with them, Chinese socialists who also killed millions for the similar reasons, etc., etc., etc.

Contemporary liberalism is a bastion of illiberal speech codes and horrific consequences.

Matthew Sablan said...

Don't say stupid things in private because you never know who is listening.

I think it is terrible that people are sharing the private conversations of the rich and powerful.

If only they had stood up for the weak and not powerful, I'd believe they cared as equally.

buwaya puti said...

The problem here, or one of them, is that in this climate of hysteria its not just the rich and powerful at risk, but anyone with something to lose. As in, for example, anyone working for a sensitive employer - these days probably all of them - risks his job should his personal email generate complaints or controversy, and ends with someone naming his employer.
I'm not sure what the answer is. Perhaps a counter hysteria, threatening employers of the hysterics?

buwaya puti said...

I highly recommend Orlando Figes fine books on Russia, Natasha's Dance and A Peoples Tragedy. He describes in depth and detail the very liberal Russian intelligentsia of the 19th and early 20th centuries, which were remarkably productive and creative, a Golden age of culture indeed. It was a society of eerily familiar, modern sorts of persons, with remarkably similar proclivities to our modern western cultural classes, though I have to say the old Russians had much better taste, talent and skill.
And then this cultivated, enlightened, moral, creative class, saturated with benevolent feelings and an intense sense of social justice, materially helped to kick off a set of massive general disasters that consumed most of them as well.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Revenant said...

Personally, I would like to see one of the people who is being asked to "apologize" for their emails respond with something like the following:

"The only way to be insulted by my email is to read my email. In which case you owe me an apology."

Revenant said...

The left was at one time, forty years or more ago, very much in support of free speech.

I have to disagree there. The left has never been in favor of free speech. *Liberals* were in favor of free speech. The left was just in favor of allowing speech by the left.

We're used to saying "liberal" and "left-winger" like they mean the same thing, but they couldn't be further apart.

John said...

Testing the new captcha by leaving it blank

John henry

John said...

Testing again with random letters

John said...

Ann what is the point of the captcha?

It doesnt matter what i put. Are you just messing with us?

MadisonMan said...

Hooray for Experimentalism! But I couldn't leave it blank.

buwaya puti said...

Liberal and left in the modern American context are mere shades of meaning that apply to the one ideological tribe. When push comes to shove they will end up in the ranks of the same army.
The way to decide what side you are on is to imagine an American version of a real ideological war, like the Spanish Civil War. Whether you are the American version of a Spanish liberal intellectual, a volunteer for Durruti's column, an old compadre of Dolores Ibarruri, you would still be shooting at us Carlists, Fascists, Monarchists.

Kyzernick said...

I left it blank.

Robert Cook said...

"Once they had control of the apparatus, the issue became how to justify banning 'hate speech,' which is any speech opposing theirs."

I certainly don't think "the left" is immune to the tendency of any group who gain power to enforce rigid orthodoxy and limit freedom of speech; it's true of all sides and to ascribe this tendency only to that side on which one is not is simply self-flattery. To the extent there have been free speech battles in this country, it has not been the right, predominantly, who have fought for it.

However, since when has "the left" gained "control of the apparatus?"

I, for one, am certainly opposed to "hate crimes" laws, as they indisputably punish the thought behind a crime, rather than the crime itself. This is where the "good liberals," signing feel-good legislation into law, haven't thought through the implications of what they've done.

Kristian Holvoet said...

I just watched Captain America The Winter Soldier last night.

It is very creepy at this point.


Especially with the news of the Homeland Security Observation Blimps..

HoodlumDoodlum said...

I'm sure Sterling appreciates Rock's not-quite-timely defense of the idea of privacy. Oh well, he's right now at least.

Revenant said...I have to disagree there. The left has never been in favor of free speech. *Liberals* were in favor of free speech. The left was just in favor of allowing speech by the left.

Exactly correct, though in fairness it's easier for the Right to champion freedom of speech when the Left owns the Media (and Academy) and subsequently gets to set the narrative--I'm not certain how principled the Right as a whole would be if they had the kind of Media power the Left usually has.

I was amused to read about Gawker's condemnation of people participating in the Fappening releases/publications, as they were otherwise all for smearing people with private information and illicitly-obtained media, provided those being smeared were people they disliked. The patted themselves on the back for refusing to comply with a lawyer's request that they take down compromising private footage of Hulk Hogan (that they mocked, etc) and then called sharing of Jennifer Lawrence's stolen photos akin to a sex crime. I don't think it's really possible to build a strong case when their moral position seems to be "invading the privacy of people I don't like = great, invading the privacy of people I do like = terrible and dangerous."

As examples please see Joe the Plumber, the Koch brothers, any number of 501C3 applicants to the IRS, conservative political interest groups whose private filings were leaked by gov officials, Mitt Romney, Mitch McConnell (recorded through an office door by a Think Kentucky activist--was that guy ever prosecuted?)...and so on.

Mike said...

The old comedy-as-truth device that keeps Chris Rock relevant.

jr565 said...

Yup, when it's the racist talking out of turn to his gf, he should be forced to lose his team. When it's Sony execs, they're just really sorry and now we shouldn't have it released.
Thanks North Korea. Not for the hack but for bringing out the hypocrisy of Hollywood.

jr565 said...

Cook, yesterdays liberals were essentially what are now classical conservatives. Around the 60's the left became socialist. Now liberal means socialist. And no, socialists are not for freedom of speech.
Look at any college campus with their speech codes to see what they think about freedom of speech.
They want people fired for saying global warming is a hoax, and/or that traditional marriage should be protected.

Mary Beth said...

MadisonMan said...

Who is that woman introducing Rock in the video -- and who in Earth let her out of the house with her hair like that? It looks absolutely terrible and greasy!

12/18/14, 10:34 AM


I found her more appealing than the man asking the interview questions. I gave up after a couple of minutes, I just couldn't watch.

Brando said...

I don't care to surrender the term "liberal" to those who seem to want to restrict everything. Let them go by a more apt term--"Leftist", "SJW", "Neo-Victorian"--any of those are more fitting. It's like dictatorships calling themselves "Democratic Republics".

I don't care much for the term "progressive" either, as it's sort of meaningless--progression can go in any direction, it'd be sort of like calling yourself the "Actionists".

Freeman Hunt said...

"The only way to be insulted by my email is to read my email. In which case you owe me an apology."

This.

If someone broke into your home and found things they didn't like written on papers there, would you feel the need to apologize?

Birches said...

So far nothing that has been released is all that bad. It just puts a spotlight on the prima donna natures of the participants and then, true to form, they blow it all out of proportion with prima donna hissy fits. It is fun that it is the behind-the-scenes players exposed.

Exactly. Leave it to Hollywood to liken leaked emails to an act of terrorism.

Jupiter said...

If I understood the whole imbroglio, the problem the usual suspects claimed to have with Sterling was not that he made certain statements, it was that he held certain views. The statements, which were not made publicly, were held to be evidence of those views.

Anonymous said...

I always leave the captcha blank. So far, it hasn't been an issue.

Curious George said...

"Freeman Hunt said...
"The only way to be insulted by my email is to read my email. In which case you owe me an apology."

This.

If someone broke into your home and found things they didn't like written on papers there, would you feel the need to apologize?"

Not a valid argument. The question is "if someone broke into your home and found info that was about your mother, and revealed it to her, would you feel the need to apologize to your mother?"

Original Mike said...

I haven't being doing the captcha of more than a month. Just ignore it, works just fine.

Original Mike said...

"If someone broke into your home and found things they didn't like written on papers there, would you feel the need to apologize?"

Maybe, since I will have just punched them in the face.

Freeman Hunt said...

Sterling was already known to be a bad guy. People only started to care when they thought other people were going to penalize them for not caring.

"Not a valid argument. The question is "if someone broke into your home and found info that was about your mother, and revealed it to her, would you feel the need to apologize to your mother?"

Good point. Certainly applicable in a lot of these cases.

SJ said...

@everyone, RE: Donald Sterling.

I find it very odd that Donald Sterling, reputed racist, was awarded "Lifetime Achievement Award" by a local branch of the NAACP.

First such award was in 2009, and a second was in the works in Summer 2014, before the incendiary recordings were released.

I find it very odd that the local branch of the NAACP could be such a bad judge of character.

Or maybe Sterling wasn't a racist, he just had no better way to identify the men he didn't want his girlfriend to hang around.

JAORE said...

Yep, per above this is NOT a first amendment thing. It's a privacy issue and a hacking issue. The privacy part interests me because certain Republican conversations and cell phone calls were released with great glee by the left (e.g. the 47% comment). And Sterling is gutted by release of what he rightfully thought was a private conversation with his girl friend. Finally, did not some Hollywood luminaries, like Samuel L. Jackson, think Snowden was a bit of a hero?
But that is oh so different when nude selfies are spread around (no pun....) or Horryrooooood executives e-mails are opened.

Where you stand depends on where you sit.

Revenant said...

The question is "if someone broke into your home and found info that was about your mother, and revealed it to her, would you feel the need to apologize to your mother?

I don't think the parallel quite holds, because generally speaking the people expressing offense and demanding apologies *aren't* the people about whom inappropriate things were said. E.g., it isn't Obama saying his delicate feelings were hurt by the Django/12 Years joke -- it is the usual offense-mongerers.

If I said something offensive to my mother, in private, and some jackass told her, of course I would apologize -- in private, to her. Public apologies are only appropriate if you actually insulted the public.

David said...

Emails are not your private stuff. Never email anything you want to be private.

Gahrie said...

I don't care much for the term "progressive" either, as it's sort of meaningless

Not really. If nothing else it ties the modern Progressives to their earlier brethren.

Achilles said...

Robert Cook said...

"However, since when has "the left" gained "control of the apparatus?""

ABCNBCCBSCNNESPNMSNBCCNBCNYTWAPOUSATODAYPBSNPR and all but 1 or 2 college campuses in the country plus the monopoly that runs public schools?

MayBee said...

People who say companies need to not put into emails that which they don't want shared don't get it.

Everything is computerized now. If you have a bank account, health insurance, a mortgage. That stuff is on computers somewhere and available for hacking.

Just as every paper is available for stealing and every conversation can be recorded.

This isn't the fault of the people who were hacked.

Robert Cook said...

"Robert Cook said...

'However, since when has "the left" gained "control of the apparatus?'


"ABCNBCCBSCNNESPNMSNBCCNBCNYTWAPOUSATODAYPBSNPR and all but 1 or 2 college campuses in the country plus the monopoly that runs public schools?"


Nope!

Gahrie said...

You have to understand...Bolshie Bob is one of those who claim that there is no real Left in the United States, and that Communism has never failed because it has never been implimented correctly.