It seems that during the past year or two, the term "hate speech" has become a very fashionable expression used by social justice warriors and multiculturalists to belittle, dismiss and attack their critics. Often this is done instead of addressing the actual criticism. It's simply labeled as "hate speech", and that's it.
Of course the use of the term has become popular because it's a perfect way of circumventing the question of what the constitutional principle of freedom of speech entails, and what should and shouldn't be allowed to be said. Because in most countries hate speech does not fall under constitutional free speech rights, labeling all dissenting opinions as "hate speech" gives a platform for censorship, silencing and banning, while still keeping up the illusion of maintaining constitutional human rights.
What do these social justice warriors and multiculturalists label as "hate speech"? Among other things, criticism of immigration policies, criticism of refugee policies, criticism of Islam (both the religion and the culture), and criticism of progressive feminism.
They label all that "hate speech" and advocate for their censorship and banning. And I'm not making that up. For example, here in Finland alone, there are entire Facebook groups that advocate and promote Facebook's plans to censor "hate speech", and they aren't exactly secretive about what they consider such. In fact, they are quite open about it. Exactly those things I listed above.
Labeling all criticism and dissenting opinions as "hate speech" is a convenient and clever cop-out, an excuse. It's a powerful tool to silence and censor dissent, because if they succeed in categorizing all such criticism as "hate speech", they have completely legal technical grounds for censorship, bypassing constitutional rights of freedom of speech.
Ultimately this is tought-policing, plain and simple. It's newspeak. It's state-based censorship of ideas (or, at least, that's what they are promoting). The "wrong" ideas are being silenced and censored by law, and only the "correct" ideas are allowed. It's highly authoritarian and anti-constitutional, even totalitarian, cleverly masqueraded into technicalities and loop-holes of the law. This is one of the hallmarks of totalitarianism: Criminalizing dissenting opinion.
And the scary thing is that they actually have a good chance to succeed in doing so. "Progressive" authoritarian ideas are, somehow, astonishingly virulent. By all intents and purposes the entirety of the media accepts and promotes all of their ideas and values, and politicians to an ever increasing extent. Anti-constitutional trampling over people's free speech, labeling every dissenting opinion as "hate speech" (ie. abusing the loophole in the law), is becoming more and more prevalent. Differing political views are not accepted, and increasingly made outright illegal, by playing with words and abusing the loophole.
This is not a liberal ideology. It's a deeply authoritarian, even totalitarian ideology. An ideology that not only is extremely bigoted (ie. absolutely intolerant of differing opinions and beliefs), but also dangerously virulent and toxic.
Moreover, at the same time, actual crimes, such as mass rapes, are being largely ignored, their significance diminished, and even excused. In the name of "tolerance". When those rapists belong to the right group.
You see, when some members of demographic group A commit violent crimes, like rape, these "progressives" go into a frenzy of accusations against the entire group, and how the culture of that group is depraved and horrible. But when some members of demographic group B commit violent crimes, like rape, these "progressives" start making up excuses, and distancing those individuals from that group, and claiming how they do not represent the group as a whole. In some cases even the criminals themselves are protected and excused.
And what's the difference between group A and group B? Skin color.
So not only are these social justice warriors and multiculturalists deeply authoritarian and bigoted, they are also textbook racists.