Parents and businesses typically buy “censorware” to filter out pornography and other obscene materials. Apparently, though, software programmers have also taken to censoring what they call “hate sites,” and one oft-blocked site, Vdare.com, is fighting with lawyers.
One might argue that censorware companies make their own software, and the programs should behave the way customers want it to. But the charge is that blocking a Web site on the grounds it’s a “hate site” is libelous.
It’s pretty clear that the main concern is being blocked (which costs hits), not being spoken of negatively. The Southern Poverty Law Center has been at it for years:
“Reviving a favorite theme of early nativists and the Ku Klux Klan, [Vdare head] Brimelow attacks 19th-century Catholic immigrants for being supposedly subservient to popes and monarchs, and thus incompatible with democratic self-rule.
“The VDARE Web site also contains an archive of columns by Sam Francis, the immigrant-bashing editor of the newspaper of the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens. In his columns, Francis rails against the ‘emerging Hispanic majority,’ plugs conspiracy theories, and promotes white racial consciousness.
“In April, VDARE took one more step toward the racist right, publishing an essay on its Web site by white supremacist Jared Taylor that dismisses ‘the fantasy of racial equality,’ claims the Civil Rights Act of 1964 ‘stripped Americans of the right to make free decisions,’ and says that ‘[b]lacks, in particular, riot with little provocation,’ unlike the far more peaceable white race.”
Vdare has said it considers the SPLC’s opposition, including designation ofÂ Vdare as a “hate group,”Â an “endorsement” or “honor.” So much for the reputation-harming effects of the racism charge that supposedly inspired the new round of lawyer-penned letters.
I happen to think blocking the whole site is overkill, as Vdare columnist Steve Sailer is one of the nation’s most talented writers when he doesn’t cross the line. But there are certainly articles on Vdare I wouldn’t read at work.
Robert VerBruggen blogs at http://robertsrationale.blogspot.com.