Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Peter Tatchell: Freedom of speech must be defended - even for homophobes

Well, God bless him. Even when you don't agree with Mr Tatchell, you have to admire him.

This is no fair-weather gay rights activist, monstering little old ladies at a Pauline Hanson rally. He's been beaten up by Robert Mugabe's thugs. And that hasn't been the only time he has literally put his body and his personal safety on the line.

More importantly though, here he is absolutely correct.

What has happened to our previously free and open societies when the simple expression of an opinion has become criminalised?

This is absolutely insane. It's also dangerous for us all. What happens to us when the winds of fad and fashion shift and it is we who hold opinions deemed to be beyond the pale?

It is extremely dangerous when the state effectively tries to determine what is acceptable opinion and what is not.

As Mr Tatchell says, his views on gay people should be challenged. But he should not be made a criminal for simply expressing them.

I also think it is high time for certain poofs to harden the fuck up and remove the chips from their shoulders. "Somebody said something nasty to me, boo hoo." Oh really? So what? Grow up.

Some people don't like poofters, for a variety of reasons. As with the poor, they are likely to be ever with us.

There already exists the criminal law to deal with situations where this opinion produces illegal acts.

But if Mr Hole wants to publicly say he doesn't like us by reason of his religious beliefs, then fine. He's welcome to his opinion, just as I'm free to express mine that he's a nutter.

Why can't we just leave it at that? It's not that the police these days are short of real crimes and real criminals to worry about.

Posted via email from Garth's posterous

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