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Jul 17 2019

Facebook Forbids Words of St Augustine

Under totalitarianism, the rules are vague, so that you must always live in fear of accidently violating them, and so that anything you might say can be suppressed. So comprehensive are the rules that Facebook has threatened to kill the account of Domenico Bettinelli for posting a quote from St Augustine that the social media behemoth’s censors have repeatedly suppressed as “hate speech”:

It’s a quote from a homily by St. Augustine of Hippo, a sermon that is contained in the official liturgical books of the Catholic Church because it is part of the Office of Readings for the 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time in the Liturgy of the Hours (the Divine Office).

The forbidden words of St Augustine are as follows:

“Let us never assume that if we live good lives we will be without sin; our lives should be praised only when we continue to beg for pardon. But men are hopeless creatures, and the less they concentrate on their own sins, the more interested they become in the sins of others. They seek to criticize, not to correct. Unable to excuse themselves, they are ready to accuse others.”

You might think that this call for tolerance is the opposite of hate speech — unless you consider that the working definition of hate speech is “speech liberals want silenced.” That includes speech by Christians.

On a tip from Kate P.



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