DARE: Daily Alert on Rights and Expression
Google fires employee who wrote anonymous memo questioning the role of women in engineering. Scientists leak hard-hitting government report on climate change, saying they feared that the Trump Administration would bury it. Department of Agriculture employees are barred from using the term “climate change” and instructed to call the phenomenon “weather extremes” instead. -Suzanne Nossel, Executive Director
Google fires author of divisive memo on gender differences
Alphabet Inc.’s Google has fired an employee who wrote an internal memo blasting the web company’s diversity policies, creating a firestorm across Silicon Valley. James Damore, the Google engineer who wrote the note, confirmed his dismissal in an email, saying that he had been fired for “perpetuating gender stereotypes.”
Scientists fear Trump will dismiss blunt climate report
The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years, according to a sweeping federal climate change report awaiting approval by the Trump administration.
NEW YORK TIMES
All the climate change related words employees at the U.S. agriculture department can’t use anymore
On February 16, federal employees at an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture received an email from one of their bosses on how to talk about climate change under the new administration. The gist was clear: Don’t talk about it.
Now starring in the West Wing: Sarah Huckabee Sanders
Pickle did not go as planned. When Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the newly minted White House press secretary, began her first official briefing by reading a child’s letter to President Trump—”Everybody calls me Pickle, I’m 9 years old, and you’re my favorite president”—the backlash was swift.
NEW YORK TIMES
The biggest threat to free speech? It’s the left
With every passing week, those who predicted the tyranny of President Trump look sillier. So does that mean we can all stop worrying about tyranny in America? No. For the worst thing about the Trump presidency is that its failure risks opening the door for the equal and opposite but much more ruthless populism of the left.
Israeli government moves to impose ban on al-Jazeera news network
The move was foreshadowed by a standoff between Qatar and the Gulf Cooperation Council, which included shutting down the network in demands delivered to Doha. Israel is not a party to this, but has long been scathing of al-Jazeera’s coverage of the Palestinian conflict, accusing it of deep ties to Hamas and other militant groups in Gaza and the West Bank.
Apple’s China problem highlights conundrum for tech sector
Apple acknowledged it had removed applications for VPNs, despite objections. The company is the latest from Silicon Valley to face a conundrum in balancing their value for human rights and free expression against a government intent on controlling online content.
Hate laws put reasonable limits on freedom of speech
Inciting violence is where Canadian law draws the line on free expression. As Kevin Metcalf of Canadian Journalists for Free Expression points out, absolute free speech is an American concept. Metcalf’s suggestion is not merely his private opinion: it is a legal fact. The question we should be asking is where those reasonable limits lie.
Khaosod English reporter charged with sedition, computer crimes
A Thai reporter accused of sedition met with police Tuesday to hear the details of the charges against him. Pravit Rojanaphruk, a senior staff writer at Khaosod English, was told by police last week that he was being charged for criticizing the junta in five Facebook posts.
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