Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Very Opposite of Free Speech

The English are getting it all wrong:
Last fall, we noted that UK Home Secretary Theresa May had made it clear that if her Conservative Party were re-elected, one of the first orders of business would be a new "Extremist Disruption Orders" plan that would outlaw any speech or events that the government declared "extremist." She wasn't kidding around. Following last week's election in the UK, David Cameron appears to be announcing just such a plan to basically wipe out anything resembling free expression in the UK...

Oh, and here's the really insane part. David Cameron is claiming that he's doing this in the name of free speech. No joke:
“For too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens: as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone. It’s often meant we have stood neutral between different values. And that’s helped foster a narrative of extremism and grievance.

“This government will conclusively turn the page on this failed approach. As the party of one nation, we will govern as one nation and bring our country together. That means actively promoting certain values.

Freedom of speech. Freedom of worship. Democracy. The rule of law. Equal rights regardless of race, gender or sexuality.

“We must say to our citizens: this is what defines us as a society.”
Did you hear that? That's the sound of actual free speech supporters having their collective jaws hit the floor. Here he is, saying that for too long we've been "tolerant" of free expression, and thus we have to ban it, in support of "free speech" and democracy. And he flat out admits that they no longer think "obeying the law" should keep you out of trouble. That's some incredibly Orwellian bullshit right there. 
I can only shake my head, and then be thankful that the former Englishmen who founded the United States were much brighter than the current English leadership--which has had almost 230 years to learn the right way to do free speech but has utterly failed to learn the lesson.


pseudotsuga said...

It is becoming clear that the best Englishmen emigrated from Old Blighty 200 years ago...
Of the ones that were left, a couple of European conflicts got rid of the rest of them.

maxutils said...

This why I am working, with a friend on my entry (he wishes not to be named) for the next "Draw a cartoon of Mohammed" contest. I think minejust might be the most offensive religious cartoon ever … I think it's money in the bank. Modified free speech isn't.