1993-11-30 - Re: Disruptive members

Header Data

From: “Perry E. Metzger” <pmetzger@lehman.com>
To: Andy Wilson <ajw@think.com>
Message Hash: 7755db12b646c5dcb0ad25d7a666542459a5c7522245cc28c5cf44fad3cf963c
Message ID: <9311300008.AA00857@snark.lehman.com>
Reply To: <9311292342.AA00834@custard.think.com>
UTC Datetime: 1993-11-30 00:12:26 UTC
Raw Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 16:12:26 PST

Raw message

From: "Perry E. Metzger" <pmetzger@lehman.com>
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 93 16:12:26 PST
To: Andy Wilson <ajw@think.com>
Subject: Re: Disruptive members
In-Reply-To: <9311292342.AA00834@custard.think.com>
Message-ID: <9311300008.AA00857@snark.lehman.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

Andy Wilson says:
> If you don't
> like free speech,  don't log in.  The U.S. Constitution and the Declaration
> of Independence state very clearly that our form of government is based on
> the recognition of human rights,  not responsibilities.  You might be able
> to find a system more to your liking in China or North Korea for a little
> while longer.

Does free speech mean that I can stand up in the midst of a company
meeting and start reciting Hamlet at the top of my voice? No, it does
not. It means that THE GOVERNMENT shall not PUNISH people for
speaking. It means that PUBLIC PROPERTY may not be sealed off from
people with particular opinions. It does NOT mean that speech is
permissable everywhere, nor does it obligate private individuals to
give opportunities to people to speak. Just because you want to reach
millions of people doesn't mean that the New York Times has to give
you space to do it, for example.

Toad.COM is NOT a public place. Mailing lists are NOT public places.
This is the exact equivalent of someone hosting a block party in their
yard and discovering that a local bum has decided to deficate in the
fruit punch.

Censorship is eliminating a person's capacity to speak. This is NOT
censorship. The individual in question could send mail to all the list
users if he wanted to. He could (and has) started his own mailing
list, so thats obviously not prohibited to him. He could post to
netnews -- and does. His outlets for speech have obviously not been