We have previously discussed the growing anti-free speech movement in Ireland. As discussed in The Indispensable Right: Free Speech in the Age of Rage, these crackdowns on free speech tend to come with periods of public panic or anger. Anti-free speech advocates use such periods as opportunities to get the public to surrender this core right to government censors or prosecutors. Right on schedule, Ireland is now pushing one of the most chilling crackdowns to date. Continue reading “The Irish Government Moves to Crackdown on Free Speech After Anti-Immigration Riot”
Below is my column in the New York Post on the Associated Press guideline for reporters to avoid calling Hamas a terrorist organization. Voice of America and other media outlets have made the same decision. This is not about supporting the Palestinian cause. It is about correctly describing a group that commits terrorist attacks as a terrorist organization.
Here is the column:
I have often written about the struggle of activists in Iran, Saudi Arabia, and other countries to fight for equal rights. These women continue to inspire many of us as they face violence and incarceration for fighting for rights that many of us take for granted. Narges Mohammadi, 51, was given the Nobel Prize “for her fight against the oppression of women in Iran and her fight to promote human rights and freedom for all.” Continue reading “Nobel Peace Prize Awarded to Jailed Iranian Advocate for Women’s Rights”
Jacinda Ardern may no longer be Prime Minister of New Zealand, but she was back at the United Nations continuing her call for international censorship. Ardern is now one of the leading anti-free speech figures in the world and continues to draw support from political and academic establishments. In her latest attack on free speech, Ardean declared free speech as a virtual weapon of war. She is demanding that the world join her in battling free speech as part of its own war against “misinformation” and “disinformation.” Her views, of course, were not only enthusiastically embraced by authoritarian countries, but the government and academic elite.
In my torts class, I often compare the different approaches and doctrines in the United States and the United Kingdom. One of the most pronounced is the position and authority of physicians on issues like consent and malpractice. This week produced a particularly striking example. British doctors are seeking to take a 19-year-old critically ill female patient off the intensive care despite her objections and those of her parents. Unlike most such cases, the woman known only as “ST” is conscious and communicative. Yet, the doctors argue that she is not being realistic about her chances of survival from a rare disorder. Now a British court has agreed and ordered that she can be placed on end-of-life care against her will. Continue reading “British Court Rules that Competent and Conscious Patient Can Be Denied Life-Sustaining Treatment Against Her Will”
We have previously discussed the denial of religious expression in France for Islamic women who wish to wear abaya, Islamic swimsuits, or burkas. Many of us have lamented about how France, the cradle of so many individual rights in history, has become so inimical to those rights. France has adopted the opposite position to these rights. It has relentlessly attacked free speech (including the criticism of religious beliefs) while denying the expression of religious beliefs. The latest example is the ban announced this weekend on Muslim women wearing the Islamic abaya to school as violations of France’s strict secular laws in education. Continue reading “France to Ban Abayas in Schools”
In 2017, Denmark took a historic step in favor of free speech by rescinding its blasphemy law after 334 years. For those of us in the free speech community, it was an important moment in Europe where free speech is being rapidly reduced. Now, however, the liberal government is moving to reinstate the blasphemy crime with a new law barring the burning of the Qur’an, the Bible, and other religous texts. Continue reading “Denmark Restores Blasphemy Prosecutions”
John Clauser, a Nobel prize-winning physicist, is apparently the latest target of a cancel campaign. According to a group called the Co2 Coalition, Clauser was scheduled to speak to a group at the International Monetary Fund on climate change when critics spotted a serious problem: he does not support the accepted view on the subject. The response was all-too-familiar (even if less expected by Nobel laureates): Clauser had to be barred from sharing his scientific views or being heard by others at the IMF.
As the debate rages in the United States over parental notification and authority in cases involving transgender children, the United Kingdom is embroiled in a controversy over a law that would not only limit parental authority in such cases but affirmatively require parents to pay for such transitioning. Under the interpretation put forward by police, parents who refuse to use the alternative pronouns for their children or refuse to pay for their transitioning could be criminally prosecuted. Continue reading ““Domestic Abuse is a Severe Crime”: British Parents Could Be Prosecuted for Refusing to Pay for Transgender Treatments”
The Irish Green Party followed many on the left around the world, including our own Democratic Party, this week and came out for censorship and speech controls. Indeed, the party went full Orwellian as its chairwoman Pauline O’Reilly called for “restricting freedom” to protect it. Continue reading ““We are Restricting Freedom … for the Common Good”: Irish Green Party Calls For Limiting Free Speech”
It is often said that “The first casualty when war comes is truth.” The line is attributed to Hiram W Johnson in 1929 in a debate over a dubious effort to legislatively ban war. That line is not original to Johnson but what followed should be equally notable: “this mode of propaganda whereby … people become war hungry in their patriotism and are lied into a desire to fight. We have seen it in the past; it will happen again in the future.” Continue reading “War’s First Casualty: Ukraine Reportedly Sabotaged Nord Stream and Then Lied About It”
Twitter continues to reveal the extensive censorship system created by government and corporate officials despite continued efforts from the left to drain the company of revenue. (The latest company to cancel Twitter is Ben & Jerry’s which objected to the company’s greater protections for free speech as allowing harmful views to be heard on social media). However, Elon Musk is undeterred and has continued to reduce censorship on the platform while letting the public see what the government has been doing behind the scenes on social media. The latest disclosure is astonishing. The FBI not only targeted individuals that it wanted banned for dissenting views, but it also was enlisted by Ukraine to target its own critics. Continue reading “Twitter Files: FBI Assisted Ukraine in Targeting Journalists and Others for Censorship”
Howard Law Professor Justin Hansford addressed the United Nations Permanent Forum on People of African Descent last week and called for the establishment of a United Nations Reparations Tribunal that could order the payment of reparations to African Americans.
The Oxford Union bills itself as “the most prestigious debating society in the world” based on the values of free speech. It is a well-earned reputation for one of the world’s oldest forums for debating the great issues of the day. However, Oxford students are outraged that the Union will allow a debate over transgender ideology. In response, as reported by the The Times UK, the Union has promised to provide a “non-student support team that will remain in a separate welfare space to offer counseling and advice.” This is to deal with the trauma of free speech in simply allowing Dr. Kathleen Stock to speak about her views that biological sex is real and “gender identity” should not alter certain biological truths. Continue reading “Taking Stock: Oxford Union to Set Up “Welfare Spaces” for Students to Cope With Gender Debate”
Thousands cheered King Charles III with ‘God Save The King” as his gilded carriage passed through London. The coronation had all of the pomp and circumstance that people expected from the fifth longest monarchy in history (Japan is the longest). The ceremony included one time-honored tradition that some of us could have done without: the arrest of peaceful protesters. It was all part of “Operation Golden Orb” and follows a long, unbroken British tradition of quashing free speech.