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Free Speech … and those who seek to silence it!

January 29, 2012

We all like free speech don’t we?

Don’t we?

Well let’s be honest we like it up to an extent.  There will always be opinions we disagree with.  Evelyn Beatrice Hall, recognised this in her quote often attributed to Voltaire;

“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it. “

Where we disagree we have the right to speak up in opposition.   We can do so civilly and without ad hominem attack.  And when speech crosses the line and becomes defamatory there is the recourse  of legal action.

Sadly though some resort to bullying to silence.  Some will play the victim (Margaret Court is a recent example) while others resort to calls to silence others.

The Herald Sun is currently running a poll:

Aboriginal Tent Embassy

Herald Sun 29-01-2012

Menzies House which describes itself as “the leading Australian community for conservative, centre-right and libertarian thinkers and activists ” has started a petition demanding to “Close the Aboriginal Tent Embassy!

” Sign our petition below, and together we will bring an end to this monstrosity.”

Of course any speech or protest that doesn’t conform to their outlook must be a “monstrosity” and must be ended.  Free Speech isn’t high on their priorities despite previous protestations.

Free Speech for some?

While they passionately supported Andrew Bolt’s right to free speech, they have no qualms in asking that it be denied Indigenous protesters.  The contradiction, the hypocrisy, does not occur to them.

Menzies House if you really want to support free speech, support it for all.  Even if you wrongly attribute the quote to Voltaire.

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