Saturday, February 18, 2006

defending Free Speach

Clarifying my position on a debate on David Farrar's site

One of the anti offensive cartoons crowd suggests : "if you think it's ok to allow something offensive then you should allow all things offensive"

But surely anyone would allow all sorts of offensive free speach (such as cartoon kidy porn) a long time before they would accept the banning of free speach (preventing anything that might be offensive).

Free speach might be restricted in some extreme cases (for example maybe real practical plans to kill people?) but I sure as hell want to know a VERY good, direct reason for it, and also an explination why there is no other reasonable solution.
"it might upset someone" is an example of a pretty terrible reason. And even if you have a reason like "they might get upset and burn an embassy" I want to hear why there is no other opption besides controling thought through censorship.


And regarding the debate about whether people can say southpark is a bad show (or mo toons are offensive)

This is the fun of free speach. I can't ban you from saying bad stuff about south park (or youth behaviour or Mo Toons) but if you say bad stuff about it I can say bad stuff about you saying bad stuff about it - and I have just as much right as anyone else. At no point will I burn your embassy!

Actually I would prefer not to lower the tone of the debate at all - but to be a little childish... "I didn't start it!"


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