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06.20.13

Richard Stallman Interviews – an Exclusive Techrights Series

Posted in Site News at 7:50 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Richard Stallman
Photo by Håkon Wium Lie, released under CC BY

Summary: Privacy, anonymity, and of course freedom discussed with the founder of the Free Software Foundation, Dr. Richard M. Stallman

If Richard Stallman is “controversial” in some people’s minds, it’s because those whom he criticises or whose work he criticises want an artificial polarity to marginalise him. A person with principles is not a person worth berating; a person with weak principles or none at all (at times hypocrisy) would be more deserving of criticism. As the old saying goes, “when you believe in nothing, you’ll fall for anything.”

The value of freedom and civil/human rights is increasingly appreciated when the façade of those principles, especially in the West, is breaking down. A lot of secrecy-veiled violations bubble up to the surface, reminding people if not waking them up to the fact that their dignity is covertly being compromised. In the name of convenience or “security” a lot of people have turned a blind eye to glaring issues and in recent years the war on dissent took off primarily to address the ‘problem’ which is informed citizens.

“The value of freedom and civil/human rights is increasingly appreciated when the façade of those principles, especially in the West, is breaking down.”Earlier this week I spoke to Richard Stallman, one of the people whom I never had reasons to disagree with. He has good experience and excellent track record foreseeing the future of computing, repeatedly showing that his dysphoric views on where technology is heading are actually quite prophetic. In a multi-part series of interviews we shall soon publish some of Richard Stallman’s views on privacy in light of Snowden’s important leaks. As far as we’re aware, this will be the first time since this leak that Stallman addresses the issues in audio form. We would like to thank Stallman for taking the time to share his insights with us. Interviews may take a while to publish because of the need to transcribe and then double-check with Stallman.

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2 Comments

  1. Michael said,

    June 20, 2013 at 11:53 pm

    Gravatar

    I would love to hear you ask him about the following quotes from his own site:
    Richard Stallman (the man who coined the term "voluntarily pedophilia"):

    All of these acts [prostitution, adultery, necrophilia, bestiality, possession of child pornography, and even incest and pedophilia] should be legal as long as no one is coerced. They are illegal only because of prejudice and narrowmindedness.
    When making pornography involves real abuse of real children …
    that does not excuse censorship. No matter how disgusting
    published works might be, censorship is more disgusting.

    Blocking adolescents’ access to porn, or keeping them ignorant
    of sex in any way, is likely to stunt their emotional growth and
    make them vulnerable to mistakes that can hurt them badly.

    Stallman advocates for putting kids in sexually abusive situations, even saying that blocking such abuse is going to harm them! It is hard to think of a more repulsive position anyone has ever taken publicly!
    I know you, specifically, have been shown these quotes by him. Amazing you still claim you have no reason to disagree with him.
    Do not get me wrong, I greatly admire the GPL and much of his other technical work, but I find many of his comments to be so grossly offensive and harmful that I could never say I support the man as a whole.

  2. Michael said,

    June 20, 2013 at 11:55 pm

    Gravatar

    Two of the three quotes I used got combined into one. They should be:

    All of these acts [prostitution, adultery, necrophilia, bestiality, possession of child pornography, and even incest and pedophilia] should be legal as long as no one is coerced. They are illegal only because of prejudice and narrowmindedness.

     

    When making pornography involves real abuse of real children …
    that does not excuse censorship. No matter how disgusting
    published works might be, censorship is more disgusting.

     

    Blocking adolescents’ access to porn, or keeping them ignorant
    of sex in any way, is likely to stunt their emotional growth and
    make them vulnerable to mistakes that can hurt them badly.

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