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Free Speech and Why It Matters

Andrew Doyle

Free Speech and Why It Matters

by Andrew Doyle

Free Speech and Why It Matters

Andrew Doyle

5 min
3 key insights
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In Free Speech and Why It Matters, writer and scholar Andrew Doyle digs into the politics and legislations that have led us to legalize free speech, and the threats currently menacing it in a polarized world.

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Free Speech and Why It Matters

by Andrew Doyle

Free Speech and Why It Matters

Andrew Doyle

Overview

Free speech is a fundamental right that many take for granted in Western countries. In today's polarized political world, it's become commonplace to try and police other people's words and opinions. Criticizing isn't the same as prohibiting or shaming. Should hate speech be legally abolished, or should communities learn how to have open debates and listen to the other side without castigating or ostracizing?

Freedom is about opinions, but also about having the right to express them openly – even if it offends. Even prohibiting an oppressor from speaking has counterintuitive consequences: the more honest and clear each party is, the easier it is to fight ignorance, racism and obscurantism. By pushing a certain narrative and allowing laws to be put in place to control speech, we would eventually diminish our own freedom – and punish ourselves by punishing the other.

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"To feel upset is not an aberration, it is a sign that we are alive."

Andrew Doyle

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Free Speech and Why It Matters

Andrew Doyle

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