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Watch your mouth; Feds spending $1 million to develop database to track ‘hate speech’

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Mind your mouth, the government is watching. The National Science Foundation is funding a $1 million dollar project for researchers to develop a database to track hate speech, political smears and “misinformation.”

Although Senate Democrat Edward J. Markey’s bill, the Hate Crime Reporting Act of 2014 went virtually nowhere in the Senate, the feds found another convenient route. The database will be called “Truthy” and it’s intended to monitor people’s moves on social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter.

In a Tuesday appearance on the “Kelly File,” Chris Stirewalt, Fox Digital Politics editor, weighed in on the issue.

“If you had somebody driving around looking at people [who had] stupid bumper stickers on their pickup trucks or unpleasant tattoos on their shoulders, it would make about as much sense,” Stirewalt said. “But that’s essentially what this says.”

Conservatives seem to reach a general consensus when it comes to the danger of such a program, and it’s not just because of the technicalities. What constitutes “hate speech?” How would you categorize “misleading information?” Here’s an easy suggestion for the feds. Just turn on MSNBC.

It really comes down to the principle of the matter. While experts speculate that the government wouldn’t do anything with the information immediately, it could easily turn sour.

“What this has with the stupidity present in an idea like this is that a thing examined will eventually be a huge temptation to regulation,” Stirewalk said. “What do we call that? An attractive nuisance. So an attractive nuisance to a bureaucrat is, ‘Hey we have all this data, we can start using it. We can start pulling it and finding people who are using smears– political smears.’ So if your great Uncle Bertram calls Barack Obama a socialist, is that his inference about what Barack Obama is, or is that hate speech and a smear? It depends on who’s talking, and it depends on who’s reading.”

Americans shouldn’t be so surprised. The Obama Administration has tried to pull a stunt like this before. Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign consisted of a website called AttackWatch.com. The website encouraged people to report their friends, neighbors and relatives for spreading “misleading information” or “outright lies” about Dear Leader.

That’s not creepy at all, right? On the most basic level, America was founded on the principles of freedom. One of the most crucial pillars of our free republic is the freedom of speech. Instead of working to limit offensive speech, the government and its minions should just develop some thick skin.

What are we turning into, North Korea?

Twitter users haven’t been shy about their feelings on “Truthy.”

Hannah Bleau


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