General_Norris wrote:It's not speech having a cost, it's "insulting everyone in this country" having a cost in the same way that slander has a cost.
He was charged under a law which demands that a symbol be respected.
Respect for a symbol falls to personal opinion on what the symbol means and why that meaning is or is not worth respect. The law doesn't change that. It just denies that there are valid reasons to not have much respect for the symbol, and adds force to convince people, rather than logic. Effectively, the government has decided its chosen symbol is untouchable, and for the sole apparent reason that they REALLY LIKE that one.
If you can't see why the government being able to make something holy is a bad thing, something subjective that means more than one thing to more than one person, that would be the source of our disagreement, and I won't argue the point further. We would clearly share axiomatic differences at that point.
If you don't see why I'm saying the government is making the French flag holy, reread the article's first line. Insulting the flag is the crime that carries a potential jail penalty and a fine of up to a month's wages for the average French citizen. This example is just a more extreme version of the speech the law appears to limit.
In sum, the law's cost is for something that shouldn't have a goddamn cost. Because symbols are not absolute, and even things humans consider absolute often aren't.
Bright Shadows wrote:The cost to the public is absolute zero.
[Opinion on what the French flag means, and that such has all been disrespected]
Let's imagine that instead of the French flag it were the LGTB flag. Would you approve or that? Or is insulting the gay wrong but insulting an entire nation right?
There is no widespread discrimination against the French that I am aware of, you can stop being French, and unless I am missing something, people generally don't commit suicide because they are so ashamed to be French. That comparison is very poorly constructed. The only analogous part is that your country of citizenship is part of your identity.
However, and it may just be me here, in light of the above, that people are not committing suicide in large amounts due to the shame of being French, or even receiving counseling over the matter, it seems we are still at a tolerable medium between criticism / showboating and mental anguish here.