Monday, 26 November 2007

Fighting fire with fire... what does that make you?

The 'anti-fascist' mob are out in force tonight in Oxford, trying to prevent Nick Griffen and David Irving from addressing the Oxford Union, blockading the gates, so people can't enter, invading the debating chamber, shouting abuse, intimidating people, because they disagree with the opinions of the two men in question, they decide for everyone else that these voices won't be heard. And of course, it never occurs to this baying mob that their actions may be a little bit... well... fascist.

Either you believe in freedom of speech or you don't. It's a simple enough concept, and it applies equally to those you agree with and those you don't. On these grounds, those opposed to the Oxford Union's decision have a right to voice that opposition, but if they succeed through violence, real or threatened, to prevent something billed as a discussion of freedom of speech, all they'll do is hand the moral victory to their designated enemies.

Voltaire's attitude, attributed in the quote "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it", is a perfect summation of the principle that should govern social discourse.

1 comment:

flashgordonnz said...

They would be more effective in their campaign (ie get themselves on 'tele) if they were mute and wore tinfoil hats.