Essay On Freedom Of Speech

There are two distinct but related reasons for this.

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The passion that marks these efforts is of utmost importance in sparking necessary dialogue and highlighting the ills of society.Hysterical backlashes substituted much-needed dialogue. Last year, a conservative student organisation at my university invited a controversial author and activist to speak on the possible threats of jihadist theology and ideology.The response of over twenty student organisations was to boycott the event.Yet, as history demonstrates, restriction of speech might be most deleterious to the very same people that such restrictions want to defend.Hindering informed discussion, which considers the views of all sides, shows the validity of some over others, is likely to be ineffective and even counterproductive in resisting prejudice and offensive ideologies.To achieve social change, we must engage in a discussion, not exclude our opponents, especially if our rival has substantial political power to influence social affairs, or if—as in the case of contemporary American politics—the “offensive” ideas are held by a majority of the public.Finger-pointing, name-calling and vilifying controversial speakers and their supporters is futile.Such instances should, on a case-to-case basis, be subjected to legal action.With those exceptions, however, there should be no infringement on free expression, and controversial speeches should be allowed, if not encouraged.First, censoring speech that is seen as discriminatory risks perpetuating existing biases by failing to tackle the core of the issues.Second, by giving control over speech to faceless authorities, those who fight for social change forsake their own ability to challenge the status quo, to participate in the destruction of dysfunctional and unjust systems.


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