Without free speech, eventually we will all lose.

Photo of George Orwell. Text: Threats to freedom of speech, writing and action, though often trivial in isolation, are cumulative in their effect and, unless checked, lead to a general disrespect for the rights of the citizen. George Orwell

“Without free speech, eventually we will all lose”: This quote is from the public letter to the Police Minister of Aotearoa New Zealand from The Free Speech Union.

Scenes of intimidation and silencing of debate, the censure of speaking and of listening, do not seem to belong to a mature and confident liberal democracy.

The democracy that has been so hard for us to achieve throughout the difficult millenniums of human history is the child of debate, of communication, and of compromise.
It is precious and has never spontaneously arisen nor been effortlessly gifted to us.

“Without the right to peacefully gather and express beliefs and opinions, controversial or condemnable though some may consider them to be, free speech is no longer protected in New Zealand. Free speech guarantees the right to both express perspectives and views, and also to hear others perspectives and views.

“The Police have failed in their duty to protect these foundational rights.

“If you take free speech off the table, as it seems Police allowed to happen on Saturday, the contested opinions and beliefs don’t simply go away. However, the ability to express them peacefully is undone. This leaves only far more extreme forms of expression on the table. We are concerned for the tenor of public debate, and the potential for this to produce violence.

“We believe in tolerance. Without free speech, eventually we will all lose.

“We call on you, and the Police Commissioner, to acknowledge the lack of action to defend the basic speech rights of those who turned up to the ‘Let Women Speak’ rally, and reassert that those who express unpopular or controversial views in public are entirely in their right, and deserve to be protected from threats, intimidation, and violence.”

Renwulf Author: Tamara Rendell
With support of Natasha Rendell and Ramon William Ravenswood

Writing that enlivens your heart, mind and soul

Follow our blog by email or notifications

Renwulf Author: Tamara Rendell

Tamara Rendell is the author of the mythological / historical fiction novels Realm of the Stag King and Realm of the Witch Queen and her poetry and stories collection Mystical Tides.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: