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Spain: Call it a Dictatorship and They Throw You in Prison

From A World to Win News Service

Spain: Call it a Dictatorship and They Throw You in Prison

April 21, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |

April 14, 2014. A World to Win News Service. A Spanish high court sentenced the 25-year-old rapper “Pablo Hasél” (Pablo Rivadulla Duro) to two years in prison for “glorifying terrorism” on April 1. Several years ago, this “anti-system rapper,” as he calls himself, declared, “If they put me in prison, that will prove I’m right”—right that almost 40 years after the end of the fascist regime of Francisco Franco, despite economic, social and political changes, the Spanish state is still the enemy of the majority of Spanish people and the people of the world and “the critical spirit.”

Hasél was arrested in November 2011, during a time of upsurge in the country’s streets, when the police raided his home in the night and confiscated his digital devices, papers and books as evidence. At his trial before the high court for political cases, the judge ruled that the only question was whether or not Hasél was the author of the dozens of videos uploaded on YouTube and elsewhere on the Net. Since Hasél unhesitatingly stated that he was, the conviction was all but automatic. Hasél argued that he had the right to freedom of speech, but the judge ruled that while that freedom exists in Spain for some speech, Hasél’s rap constitutes “hate speech,” prohibited by law, and further, that “terrorism is the worst violation of human rights,” so no one has the right to defend it. (El País, April 1, 2014)

This is the standard legal double-talk that is the hallmark of the Spanish state: “terrorism” is an affront to “democracy” so those accused of it have no rights, those who defend those accused of it have no rights, those who argue for those people’s rights are “apologists for terrorists” and so on in a widening spiral. But in sentencing an artist to prison for nothing but his words, this is a further step in demonstrating the truth of his words, that in capitalist countries “freedom of expression is nothing but freedom to lie or shut up, and like democracy, freedom of expression is one of history’s greatest swindles.”

What does it mean, Hasél says, to talk about freedom in a country where six million people have been robbed of their jobs, half a million people have been kicked out of their homes, “and if you protest you get beaten or killed?” One of his videos shows him in a June 2011 march of “Los Indignados” (The Outraged) in Valencia. The police attacked it viciously, as they did protests in other cities in Spain in those months. They sought not just to stop it but also to break the heads, faces and arms of as many young women and men as possible, as the footage clearly and indisputably shows. Another rap video, El Reino de LosTorturadores” (The Kingdom of Torturers), features the battered and crushed faces and bodies of young women and men arrested at mass demonstrations defending Basque nationalist “terrorists” and then beaten and tortured while in custody—in the name of defending “democracy.”

How can Hasél be convicted of “hate speech” and being a threat to “democracy” when Franco-era torturers are considered respectable citizens, protected from arrest by law, even when clearly identified by their victims; Franco regime political figures are still prominent in public life; the main monument to fascism is untouched and untouchable; and it is perfectly legal and respectable to publicly praise Franco and seek to continue his work?

Franco came to power through a military uprising against an elected government in 1936 and an exterminating civil war, with the backing of Nazi Germany and Mussolini’s Italy, and the complicity of all the Western powers. His regime, which today could be called a Catholic jihad in its religious zeal and enforced cultural purity, targeted secular forces and workers and laborers, imprisoned all known opponents and executed many thousands. As was recently revealed, it stole thousands of babies from their mothers to ensure that they would have a proper conservative Catholic upbringing. Despite Franco’s alliance with the defeated Axis powers in World War 2, his regime survived by becoming a key American ally afterwards. Why today is it allowed to praise Franco but not groups that fought his regime? How can the upholders of the Spanish state accuse anyone else of “hate speech”? In fact, how can they label the political violence of their opponents as terrorism when they murdered people and broke lives on a vast scale for their political ends?

Perhaps Hasél’s greatest “crime”—and his greatest merit—is that since his 2005 breakthrough album, “Eso No Es Paraiso” (This Isn’t Heaven), he raps about Spain as still a capitalist dictatorship. He says that brutal repression on the one hand, and elections and illusions about “freedom of expression”, the post-Franco regime’s supposedly greatest achievements on the other, are two sides of the same coin, and combine with a media-cultivated “dictatorship of stupidity” that encourages a “Stockholm syndrome” where the masses of people identify with the capitalist system that exploits and oppresses them. He is very clear that not only is the currently-governing Popular Party the political successor party to the fascist regime, but that the Socialist Party “is worse or at least as bad”, and that the parliamentary “left” is just a tail on the Socialists.

The Socialists [Partido Socialista Obrero Español] (Hasél spells the party’s initials P$OE) made it possible for the Spanish ruling class to switch over from a fascist to a bourgeois democratic (electoral) form of rule almost painlessly, by protecting the continuity of persons and institutions and the bulk of the state apparatus, and agreeing to what some people call “the law of silence” protecting fascist personalities from legal consequences for their terrorist rule. The mass graves were kept secret and the killers given new jobs or allowed to keep up their work.

The Spanish Socialists led its own terrorist campaign against Basque nationalists when they came to govern. In the “dirty war,” Spanish death squads in France assassinated exiled Basque nationalists, ordinary Basques and French and other revolutionaries and bombed taverns and other public places. Neither ruling party has a right to call anyone else terrorists.

As a Socialist Party MP shamelessly explained in commenting on a new case where the courts refused to hear the complaints of a former student activist against the official who tortured him in 1975, “I just don’t think it would be good for the country. We don’t know where it starts and where it finishes. If we take someone who was a torturer in 1970, why aren’t we going to go after some ministers in Franco’s government who are still alive? Why not the courts? Where do we set the limits?” (The New York Times, April 6, 2014). Yes—what if we went after the same courts once led by Franco that have now sentenced a young rapper to prison? Might that not imperil the repressive efficiency and legitimacy of the state itself?


0 # vices 2014-04-25 06:47
What happened here is described in the text, "...coverage of urban riots has tended to depict such political disorder as instances of criminality and to ignore the larger structural and political forces involved. (Beckett p.78) " Hasél is framed as a terrorist instead of a revolutionary because the discourse surrounding the term terrorist strips Hasél of all of his legitimacy. As long as the government fools the public into viewing him as a terrorist, all the punishment inflicted on him is justified. It also makes his acts seem futile because the government discredits his acts by labeling it as terrorism. According to the quote, the media portrayal of political riots focuses more on labeling the behavior as criminality while ignoring the political structure that caused the uproar. This is similar to this case in which they labeled Hasél as a terrorist, so people don't focus on all the terrorism the government has inflicted.
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0 # Sadiez Moreno 2014-04-25 18:15
This could be related to Tuesday's lecture, when the professor explained how the US has policies (in regard to terrorism) that I believe are present in the case of Hasél. These Public Order Policies have seeped into the Criminal Justice System and have distorted our Constitutional Rights into mere privileges that we are granted on occasion. Dr. Loo explained, "Governance has moved way from treating only those who have done something suspicious as subject to surveillance and sanctions to expanding it to include everybody as suspicious." Hasél wasn't even guilty of any actual terrorism, he was simply exercising his freedom of speech which clearly isn't free at all. If the government is able to make an example of somebody through harsh consequences, they think that they are deterring the general public from making similar actions from that of the alleged perpetrator; it is their way of keeping the public in line, thus minimizing individuals' rights altogether.
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0 # soc123 2014-05-05 06:39
Thats very true! it saddens me to hear how people are being treated in other countries by voicing their opinions, but at the same time I think about how good we have it and that we do have freedom of speech. Comparing the U.S.A to other countries are we too lenient or or the other countries too strict? is there such thing as balance?
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0 # marcam 2014-05-05 20:16
I think you bring up a good point. Governments are breaking citizens rights when they are being targeted. They think that all citizens are their foe and because of it they remove their nationality rights, freedom of speech. It seems as if that no longer matter in the world. Freedom of speech is accepted until you say something negative about the government. As soon as you say anything negative you are considered a terrorist and you become part of the watch list.
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0 # MayDay 2014-04-26 00:10
Upon reading this and finding this article thoroughly interesting, I looked up Pablo Hasél for the definitive “justifiable” reasoning’s for sentencing him to 2 years of prison and from the articles that I found on Google, there is not a true justification for why this man should be arrested. He commented on his court hearing before the sentencing stating that he was being arrested due to “glorifying racism”. He countered that judgment with the fact that it was his hatred for the oppressors that spurred his music and lyrics. I got one of his videos and translated that to English and although he does speak of Nazi’s, Al Qaeda, and the Basque separatists ETA (in different songs), his intention was not “praising” (the word the High Court contributed to his sentencing) the groups directly, but more so, Hasél argued that his lyrics are a gateway for the general population to call the government out on their misdemeanors and make a statement to his country that they need people to revolt...
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0 # MayDay 2014-04-26 00:12
CONT(2/3)...and change the plight of injustice occurring.
Furthermore, he also said, ” People should get to know that in this country there is complete freedom of expression only for the fascists and, on the other side, there are people detained and brought to court for expressing their ideas about social justice.” (Hasél-Translat ed by In class, Dr. Loo mentioned that we are all being tracked through technology; the sites we visit, our contacts are all being tracked until there is enough suspicion to detain us and call us “terrorists”. As mentioned in class, there is a difference between freedom of speech to create awareness and physically harming civilians. The FBI’s definition of terrorism is accurate to how the general population would classify terrorism, except for one line. On the FBI webpage, the one line was, “Appear intended (i) to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; (ii) to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion;”...
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0 # MayDay 2014-04-26 00:13
CONT (3/3)...Also I’d like to mention that I looked up the definition for “domestic terrorism” because I felt it’s more applicable than international terrorism. Basically the government found a way to define terrorism to the point where speech can be contained without intervening with our First Amendment. That form of (revolutionary) speech can be twisted into coercion of civilians which would influence the policies of the government thus causing someone like Hasél to become a victim. Hasél is not in our country but cases like Hasél’s, such as the peculiar death of Michael Hastings, is prominent in raising awareness to how oppressed and manipulated we actually are.
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0 # deltoro 2014-04-26 03:38
What type of criminal justice do we have? The structure is greater than individuals and we are not allowed freedom of speech? Show punishment on the streets when people are protesting, in order for the rest of the population to see what can happen to you if you go against the government. People fear their leaders. Anybody has the right to freedom of speech but the government takes it away when someone uses it against them.
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0 # deltoro 2014-04-26 03:44
This is another case of how governments are using the laws to do whatever they want with their citizens. “The police attacked it viciously, as they did protests in other cities in Spain in those months.” This is another example of what happened in the 1960s in the southern states in the U.S.: “law and order.” In which the government used the law to try to stop the social movements. They have the right to protest. The police don’t have to use violence against them. The government gets scared when people get together and demand their rights.
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0 # mitchell denerson 2014-04-26 03:45
This article reminded me of what we talked about in class with the Criminal Justice System. When you throw the word "terrorism" or "terrorist" at someone, their rights have been taken away. It seems as though this rapper sees the ugly truth beneath the "democracy" which seems to just be a cloak over fascism. The high ranking individuals in political control did not want the rapper's words to reach the public, and have an uprising, so they sentenced him away to make a point to anybody calling out the government. It's their way of keeping control in society, which makes the citizens angrier which could eventually lead to more trouble.
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0 # Sme 2014-04-26 17:04
“A government can only exist with the consent of people”, this expression seems to lack meaning when we talk about many governments in the world. Even when people are not supporters of the way the government governs a nation, there is nothing to do, if people try to change the laws to favor minorities they are treated as “terrorist” initiating riots or disturbing the “peace” of the nation. The freedoms written in the constitution such as freedom of speech and so on have been taken away from us by the government.
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0 # giovanna serrano 2014-05-01 03:06
Seems lack government is doing anything it can to pretend to keep its people happy by letting them hear what the people want to hear, but are doing the opposite. Like you say it is constituted that we have freedom of speech, when we all know there are laws and restriction to this. So the question here is what role does the government serve for its people?
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0 # karla garcia 2014-04-26 18:16
I think this has a lot to do with what the professor said in class about when the war against terrorism is in place every ones rights are taken away. It is very similar to what is happing in the united states with the new polices about speaking against the government. when at war against terrorism our rights we don't matter.
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0 # Michelle Ngo 2014-04-26 23:04
There are some rappers who rap about things that they experienced in their life, environment, or how they feel right at that moment. What they say is true and from the heart. In other words, even with the trial, the accused is still going to jail because of what they have spoken to their country. What is thought to be from the heart is seen as terrorism because the government does not approve of what is said. They want to control people. Everyone has the right to freedom of speech, but it can also be limited because the government controls what is broadcast to their country.
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0 # Marisol Parra 2014-04-27 17:47
Soc 305 Freedom of Speech is limited; what you say and or protest because it mostly is seen as negative in the eyes of the Government. Hasel a rapper who caused uproars to change the political system in Spain was portraying the message of Spain as a dictatorship. Going back to the Division of Labour by Durkheim, according to Durkheim we accept the social norm of the Political System. Hasel was only trying to bring forth the message of Spain: Corruption. Even though Freedom of Speech exists we still have to be careful what we speak as in Hasel case.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-04-27 18:31
Quoting Marisol Parra:
Going back to the Division of Labour by Durkheim, according to Durkheim we accept the social norm of the Political System.

Actually, according to Durkheim, the people are the ones who create the social norms, including those of the political system, so it's not that we accept the norms as much as we supposedly create the norms via the conscience collective. There's an important distinction there because if it was just acceptance and not creation, then that would make public policy look like it was one sided and the conscience collective was non-existent. So then that raises the question of whether you think the Hasel case supports or undercuts Durkheim's claim?
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0 # Jessica Ulloa 2014-04-27 20:51
The treatment that Pablo Hasél and others in Spain have endured due to the power that Franco has is terrible. Like discussed during lecture, these individuals live in a society that is the primary problem and the secondary problem that needs to be addressed is the individuals. For this to not occur the dynamic of the society will need to be changed. The fact that the judge decided that Hasel's Freedom of speech was not freedom yet a hate speech, shows that the judge and the country feels that if any are not on 'their side' then they cannot be living in freedom at all. Like stated before what needs to change is the ideology of the country.
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0 # Christine Lopez 2014-04-27 21:59
Soc 305.Pablo Hasel was sentenced for two years in prison because he was considered as glorifying terrorism in Spain. This was unjust because Hasel was at his right to speak about the economic, political, and social changes he even marched in protest with the "Los Indignados" where he reordered many young men and women with there faces beaten up and many were seriously injured. Hasel had the right to protest and record because in Spain freedom of speech exist. but in this case it must be limited. The article states, that the Spanish state affronts to democracy those accused have no rights. those who argue for those rights are apologist for terrorist and freedom of expressions nothing but freedom to lie or shut up.
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0 # Christine Lopez 2014-04-27 22:04
Soc 305. Durkheim mentioned, the relations are governed by co- operative laws with restrictive sanctions and solidarity which express results from the division of social labour. Conscience collective the results that determine them cannot have dominating force and transcendent authority when often demands expiation.
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0 # thatdude 2014-04-27 22:18
This is a prime example of how much power a government can have. Through his music Hasél expressed his views of the Spanish government and for that he was taken to court and sent to prison. Comparable to how Obama's directive on the media and what is allowed to be reported about the government, Franco's regime also had an agenda that included diffusing any negative remarks toward the government. Complete control was the objective of Franco and someone like Hasél, who had a voice through his music and lyrics, was seen as a threat. It is frightening that any government could have control at such a magnitude that would allow them to send someone to prison based on lyrics. I couldn't even imagine the type of protest that would occur if a similar situation happened in the U.S.
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0 # LA305302 2014-04-28 01:52
it seems as though that other countries around the world face the same issue that the US currently also goes through. We spoke about terrorism and the loose definition of it, and here it seems like that power has been abused. Another similarity is how Franco regime continues to govern, with the alias of another government in tack, that reminds me of the neoliberals here in the United States, and the democracy theory tactics. Freedom of speech is not something that is repeated by those in power, for those in society to exercise. Occupy is an example of this.
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0 # aplopez 2014-04-28 02:33
It is a shock to hear about what happened to Hasel. The fact that he was charged with "hate speech" is unthinkable. Saying something that you believe in is not a crime, its a right. Yes, every country has its own system but incarcerating someone that wants to show there freedom of speech, is wrong. Hasel did his own thing, he was not hurting anyone. People just decided and at the same time, realized and agreed with Hasel. Trough music and books, his voice was noticed. The Government should not take that away.
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0 # Danielle Waldman 2014-04-28 06:03
I completely agree. How can the government classify his lyrics as "hate speech" if he is speaking the truth? If musicians and people in the public eye are sanctioned for their words and are not able to get them out there, how will the people looking up to them be able to get their voices heard? Music and books are one of the best ways to speak the honest truth and to let it be heard by all, so sad that the government takes that right away.
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0 # Guy 2014-04-28 02:53
When comparing Spain and the United States it seems all too familiar. But instead of directly attacking US citizens like what Spain seems to be doing to their citizens the government indirectly attacks us in ways we would not notice until it is too late for some of us. They all try to put us in our place trying to secure us with these invisible ropes. I think they labeled Hasél as a "terrorist" because I think music from artists have a lot of influences on people. They are using the same technique as the US's NDA Act as discussed in class. Changing people's view is probably one of the best weapon anyone can use against a corrupted government. Once people see what kind of hell hole we live in there will be radical changes to the system and maybe a change in the government. But we all know that once new power flushes out the old, people in power will eventually abuse it again.
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0 # SecretSeaBridges 2014-04-28 03:43
This reading is another example of an unjust government. "Freedom of speech" is a term that was given to the people to give the illusion that they have rights that are protected and supported by their government. However, how could this be true when the people are unable to voice the truth?! People are manipulated by the government everyday, there is no such thing as freedom.
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0 # Princess Peach 2014-04-28 03:47
I thought that this article related to what we discussed in the SOC 302 lecture. In class we came up with this general definition of terrorism: the use of fear to control or manipulate people. This definition does not describe what Hasél did. The government should not classify what he said as terrorism. However, the government exaggerates and distorts what Hasél said in order to justify their actions. It is unjust.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-04-28 04:00
Quoting Princess Peach:
In class we came up with this general definition of terrorism: the use of fear to control or manipulate people.

Terrorism's nature requires more than just that fear is being used to control or manipulate people, since coercion does the same as this. Terrorism includes as part of its nature the use of violence that is specifically aimed at innocents or is entirely indiscriminate in its use of violence so as to make no distinctions between innocents and combatants. That is what makes terrorism distinct as a strategy.
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0 # Jane Doe 2014-04-28 05:22
This article ties back to lecture in class in which the government has the right to strip anyone from citizenship if they are accused of terrorism. I find it very unfair that someone can actually be stripped from citizenship just because someone accused them without there being any actual evidence to back-up the statement. This just shows how unfair democracy is. It goes back to the same discussion that the government wants to have us believe that we actually have a say in what goes on in our countries/state s.
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0 # cutemeow 2014-04-28 04:22
It sounds like Franco's regime is more based on terrorist foundations, rather than Hasel's rap music. The police beating the protesters and civilians is a perfect example of the government using violence aimed at innocents in order to instill fear to control and manipulate. Perhaps they would defend that the protesters were not "innocents" because they were partaking in deviant acts against the government, but to an outsider, it doesn't look like that. This is similar to how the US government uses media to control the public's opinion of social issues. By directing the attention at Hasel, and how he is a "terrorist" against his country, they are able to vilify who he is and what he stands for. Trying to change the public opinions of Hasel's character and his intentions, they are revoking his validity, his power of his words, and truth.
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0 # Uriel Gonzalez 2014-04-28 05:29
We can also compare the technique used in Franco's regime being more based on terrorist foundations rather than Hasel's rap music, to the time when the government was trying to advocate a war on drugs during the 1960's as the main problem to distract people from seeing social movements as more important. We can agree that the government does not want to reveal the truth. From the two types of terror, either state or anti-state terror, state terror is applied here because it is the government that is torturing and influencing people to be in fear. The government uses violence against innocents in order to have control. In Hasel's example, the Spanish government has set the ground rules that one's speech is no longer free as they considered his rap music as "hate speech" and nevertheless a crime. Hence, this is the radical shift in the nature of governance that we now face.
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0 # flr9d 2014-04-28 04:27
This article brings to light how scary a government can be. Like it was stated in class anyone can be accused of terrorism. Hasel was convicted for rapping about something that did not coincide with the government and with that was accused of terrorism and stripped of his rights as a citizen. In the article it was also said that any one we tried to defend his freedom of speech could also be accused of terrorism. If the public can not trust their own government then who can they trust.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-04-28 04:30
Quoting flr9d:
If the public can not trust their own government then who can they trust.

They can trust those who tell the truth about what's actually going on and who are able to muster the evidence to prove that what they're saying is true. What other choice do we have?
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0 # tiffany 2014-04-28 05:00
Government is scary. In every country there seems to be ups and downs, some better and some worse than others. Yet, this example here is not even better or worse, its an extreme. He was expressing how he felt and what he believed. It may not be a freedom there for him to say what he did, but clearly it also is not legal. The fact that they he is being accused of hate speech or terrorism is absurd, in a way I feel the government knows they messed up and or should not have done what they did.
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0 # Uriel Gonzalez 2014-04-28 05:11
As explained in lecture, there has been a shift towards a far broader definition of public order crimes to include any behaviors or appearance that might make anybody uncomfortable. Pablo Hasel's story sheds light to this reality. His "hate speech" behavior was considered uncomfortable to the Spanish government, therefore sentenced to two years in prison. This is obsurd because Hasel's freedom of speech is taken away. The judge's action on Hasel's case may have been subjective in order to keep control of the system, rather than objective. This may be another example of how government will always come before people, even with or without the existence of a constitution that is supposed to protect people's rights.
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0 # Sherlock 2014-04-28 05:20
Freedom of speech in many countries today, actually means freedom to say whatever you want as long as it is in the best interest of the state. True freedom of speech allows, if not demands criticism from the public. It is our responsibility to call out the government on their bad decisions.
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0 # Jane Doe 2014-04-28 05:22
Pablo Hasél was just trying to voice out his opinions exercising his freedom of speech to a subject he found unjust in which he was later accused of terrorism. Terrorism is as described by Google as, "the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims." In other words for someone to be accused of terrorism there is a need of force or violence to be involved in which Pablo did not seem to be doing. Although, the police trying to stop these assemblies do use torture and force to get their point across. So in reality who is the terrorist here?
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0 # marcam 2014-05-05 20:22
I don’t see and understand how saying something is a terrorist. How speaking along with a beat about something you dislike is a terrorist. How wanting change but not doing anything violent is terrorist. How speaking your mind is unlawful but law enforcement breaking citizens faces and arms is ok. I don’t understand how the government can justify their criminal acts and punish those who don’t do anything violent.
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0 # Danielle Waldman 2014-04-28 05:49
It is unfortunate and unfair that Hasel was sentenced to prison for rapping lyrics that were considered an act of terrorism against the Spanish government. Freedom of speech should not be taken away nor be sanctioned for it, it should allow him to speak freely, especially since he is in the media and needs to get his words out. Would the U.S. government do the same to a musician that spoke out against it?
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0 # AJ 2014-04-28 05:50
The case of Hasél is an excellent example of how far a government will go to control what is leaked into the media. Evidently, no matter what government, the goal is to control what information is fed to the public. Hasél was doing exactly what most governments fear, educating the public of the realities of the Spanish government, which led to his arrest for hate speech. As the public, we find his arrest as an injustice done for speaking his mind, but unfortunately this might just be another door that has been open for other governments to take similar actions.
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0 # Jason Kubanis 2014-04-28 06:01
The matter of Pablo Hasel is quite unfortunate, a man trying to get his word across about a vile country. I feel that if a Rapper from the United States was rapping about over throwing the government, I believe that this same type of treatment would be brought forth. Take for example the RED scare, if you even thought or spoke about promoting communism you would find yourself in this same type of situation. It is terrible for someone to be imprisoned for speaking to his fellow citizens, and giving them an understanding from a different point of view of the way he feels about being trapped in this dictatorship.
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0 # Natalie Rivera 2014-04-28 06:15
Soc 305 Where is the democracy? Reading this was very frustrating. It seems that the government desires for society members to not have a mind of their own. Many times the government uses fear to force society into believing what is convenient for the government. How? Usually by making an example out of a person that "goes against the grain."
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0 # soad 2014-04-28 06:19
I have been lucky enough to be able to go to Spain in the summer of 2011. I remember my dad asked a woman working at the information booth in Madrid, if they have any museums about the Franco era. She responded that there is nothing of the sorts, just a monument in the outskirts of Madrid. She continued on saying that "no one speaks of that time anymore, we don't want to remember." Franco was an oppressive dictator. But we can't really compare Franco and Hasel. Hasel is a rapper, and he should have the right to talk against the government. To bring in Hasel's lyrics and call him a terrorist is ridiculous. These countries claim to have 'freedom of speech' but the word 'terrorist' can strip a person from all their rights, and thats terrifying.
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0 # Brandon Vildosola 2014-04-28 06:56
To be honest, what else can you expect? Sure 40 years is a long time since Franco ruled but it is not nearly long enough to end all the harm his regime has caused. You can't expect all those who supported him to just vanish or forget all about the time. It will take several more decades before all those who supported him are out of political office. Only then will freedom of speech from things like this be truly legal and this rapper will have nothing to worry about in legal terms and even less to rap about in the future.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-04-29 00:34
Fascism won't go away just because of the passage of time. It's a political ideology that serves certain political forces and as long as they are still around, they will continue to propagate those ideas. In a larger sense, as long as exploitation of whole classes of people continue, then there will be forces among those who directly and indirectly benefit from that exploitation who will continue to organize around ideas that justify that exploitation.
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0 # Slovebee 2014-04-28 07:00
I had no idea this was going on in Spain! This is so surprising to me. And also quite sad, that political uproar is happening, in what I think, one of the most culturally beautiful countries of the world. This situation reminds me of when we discussed the NDAA in SOC 302. Even our own government has a system set up so that if anyone shows any bit of a threat to the government, they are given the right to strip you of citizenship. However, through this act they are allowed to do that without a trial. In this article it states Hasel was given a trial. I wonder just how fair the trial and prosecution went for him?
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0 # ch2782 2014-04-28 18:47
How is Pablo Hasél songs considered racist? In that case, then most comedians and rappers should also be put in jail by using the N-word and offending people of color. The court system probably feels pressured and feels like they might lose authority over their subjects; therefore, they probably want to make a statement by loading Hasel with charges. Keeping Hasel locked up seems like a threat to the system and courts, not society. Enforcing more rules on Hasel and accusing him on false pretenses will cause even more protest towards the people, because the people already know the real “truth” behind it all. There is no participation in promoting “terriosm” as well as violating the freedom of speech through his songs.His songs are a symbol of clarity, expression, and implementing reality to these people in Spain to understand the problems of society and defend their country for whoever causes them harm.
To be continue...
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0 # ch2782 2014-04-28 18:48
This connects to soc 305 because the more people who know about the social problems in society, the more educated and more prepare people are, the more willingness they are to stand up from themselves. System/governme nt want to maintain their power and authority, which causes them to lock people in jail, not for the people’s sake, but for theirs.
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0 # Susan Torres 2014-04-28 19:45
I had no idea Spain's government was so distorted. At the same time I don't know why it surprises me when our own government is just the same but for some reason everything just seems to get swept under the rug. It might also be because our government does a better job at hiding what is actually going on. On the other hand, as I write this I come to think that it might also be because U.S. citizens do not put much importance to such topics because it is not affecting them directly. Or simply because there is such a diversity that the majority of people do not see themselves as Americans but their nationalism is rooted to their home countries. So why would they even want to change or find out more about what the U.S. government is doing.
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0 # Agris 2014-04-29 04:56
Could you describe a little of what the government was like before this power took over? Not that it justifies any of the actions that have taken place. I could look up the facts but I want to hear how you understand the revolution. It would clarify the questions in my head while reading the article.
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0 # WOW 2014-05-03 20:53
They are making an example of the rapper. They are using his fame to show other citizens who has the upper hand. The government is cutting off a chance of a possible uprising for change. The government knows they are in the wrong, but are not going to admit it. Spain is trying to protect their shame, but by imprisoning Hasel they are just drawing more attention to their wrongdoing. Music is a great form of speech. It is listened to by most everyone. In class Dr. Loo talked about the Kent state shootings in 1970 there was a song by Neil Young entitled “Ohio” that told of this tragedy.
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0 # minnie 2014-05-06 10:41
Within reading the first few lines of this article, I remembered back to the lecture in which we were talking about terrorism, its definition, and Public Order Policies. When I read that a Spanish high court sentenced rapper Pablo Hasel to two years in prison for “glorifying terrorism,” I was skeptical about whether Hasel really did “glorify terrorism.” This sounded a lot to me like the National Defense Authorization Act of 2011, which is an act of the United States that is a presumption of guilt by association. Hasel would be going to prison just for saying words and exercising his right of free speech. But of course, the Spanish government (like many governments) finds a loophole and claims that Hasel’s rap constitutes “hate speech.” He is not being convicted on account of any actions that he has committed. He is being convicted of words in a song.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-05-06 13:09
The NDAA allows and mandates guilt by association but it also mandates that members of the US military may convict someone by mere accusation. All you have to be is accused by someone in the military of being a "terrorist," and you can have your US citizenship revoked (if you're a US citizen) and your rights to due process suspended. You can be indefinitely detained w/o a trial or even formal charges. This gives to the military powers that the White House has been exercising since Bush's years and continuing into Obama's. When the NDAA was first being considered, Obama specifically asked Congress to include US citizens in the law. When Congress passed the law, he publicly complained that he might not sign it b/c its passage might interfere with executive privileges. He then signed it & at the signing said he wd never use it against Americans. If that were true, then not veto it? If you didn't want US citizens included, then why ask Congress secretly to include them? Cont.
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0 # Dennis Loo 2014-05-06 13:18
In other words, the NDAA enables anyone in the military to simply accuse someone and they can be punished based merely on an accusation. You can be put away forever under the NDAA and never see your day in court & have a chance to confront your accuser or the charges. At GTMO detainees are not allowed to see all of the charges against them. They have the right to refute the charges against them but not the right to know what all the charges are against them. How do you refute charges u don't even know exist? This is guilt by secret accusation and Kafkaesque. On NDAA, see On GTMO, see See also this from 2009
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Elaine Brower 2

Elaine Brower of World Can't Wait speaking at the NYC Stop the War on Iran rally 2/4/12