Tuesday, April 8, 2008

iTunes.ca pulls anti-gay dancehall songs from its online store

This is a good move by iTunes Canada. It sends the right message.

The songs — by Jamaican dancehall artists Buju Banton, Elephant Man and TOK — contain lyrics that promote the violent killing of gays, including the lyrics, "Dance wi a dance and a bun out a freaky man" (Join our dance and let's burn out the queer man).

To all the free-speech literalists out there, how exactly does, "let's burn queer men to death," contribute to the marketplace of ideas?

I hope HMV, Archambault Inc, and Amazon.ca follow suit.


Slap Upside The Head agrees with me, I'm happy to say.

1 comment:

Cliff said...

It isn't a free speech issue. These artists have the right to produce this hateful material and iTunes has the right to refuse to sell it. I'd have a problem if someone was trying to legally prevent the musicians from creating or releasing the material, but any company like iTunes or HMV has the right not to sell it.

I'm close to being a free speech absolutist when it comes to government sanctions, but freedom of speech doesn't mean freedom from consequences. Produce hateful material maybe you won't have a venue to sell it and maybe that will have an economic effect on all your 'art'. Teach hate in a classroom maybe you'll lose you job and your teaching certificate. I'm all good with that.

Better that they be impoverished for their hate, dismissed as morons and convicted in the court of public opinion by their own crappy art and idiotic messages than revered as free speech martyrs for being targeted by the counterproductive overkill of heavy handed legal sanctions.

The Wiemar Republic had some of the most stringent hate crime legislation in the world - right up to the point when Hitler was voted into power.