Should Hate Speech Be Free Speech?

On college campuses across the country, certain groups (specifically, at UTSA, Turning Point and Young Americans for Freedom) are growing concerned that their First Amendment right to free speech is being impeded on. Here’s why that’s bullshit:


For the most part, not to say such cases don’t exist, far right voices aren’t being censored on a large scale on campus (speaking for my campus, at least). In fact, it feels that the opposite is true. What they seem to think is being silenced is actually just being held accountable. Freedom of speech is not the same thing as freedom from criticism for saying something intolerant.


What types of speech are these organizations considering to be silenced on campus? Plain and simple: hate speech and images. Unfortunately, hate speech (including symbols such as swastikas) is protected under the first amendment. Separating legality from morality, why is this speech worth protecting to these organizations? Why is your organization so concerned about giving a platform and respect to literal nazis? Those same groups contain people that argue that just because abortion is legal doesn’t mean it should be on account of their moral opinions, so why does that not apply when it comes to hate speech? When your words infringe on the existence of others, it stands for anything but freedom.


Conservative organizations on campus are conflating free speech with good speech that is worth protecting, creating demonstrations that give a voice to alt right ideas. Why is it that those ideals find such comfort among them? While the first amendment is good in itself, do we really think hate speech should fall under that? If you want to make an argument that it should, know this: it is not okay to be a nazi, a racist, or a rapist, and you don’t deserve respect if you are one. Sorry.