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Freedom of speech crisis in the UK?

 
 
Reply Thu 29 Apr, 2010 08:08 pm
The UK apparently has freedom of speech (as long as you don't offend anybody)


BBC News - John Lennon Airport sexual image atheist gets Asbo



This is a travesty! If I lived in the UK I would definitely protest this. Freedom of Speech is the bedrock of a civilized and free society. I can't even comprehend how something like that would pass.

Do any of our resident Brits have any comments?
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theophilus cv
 
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Reply Fri 30 Apr, 2010 09:03 am
@Fatal Freedoms,
There are two issues to consider in this case. The first is whether he had the right to make the images and the other is whether he had the right to leave them in the prayer room.

I agree that he should have the right to express his opinions any way he chooses and proclaim them openly but it seems to me that the airport has the right to decide what they want in their prayer room. It seems to me that he is infringing on the rights of the managers of the airport by using their property to express ideas they didn't agree with.

However, from reading the story I get the impression that he is being punished for making the images, not just for leaving them where he did. If that is the case then I agree that this is suppression of free speech.
kynaston
 
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Reply Fri 30 Apr, 2010 01:16 pm
@Fatal Freedoms,
Fatal_Freedoms;71480 wrote:
The UK apparently has freedom of speech (as long as you don't offend anybody)


BBC News - John Lennon Airport sexual image atheist gets Asbo



This is a travesty! If I lived in the UK I would definitely protest this. Freedom of Speech is the bedrock of a civilized and free society. I can't even comprehend how something like that would pass.

Do any of our resident Brits have any comments?


There are a great and growing number of infringemements on our liberties here, but this isn't one I'd get worked up about. Our local nazis- BNP and the like - get round the ban on racist incitement by constantly attacking Muslims and saying this is a religious matter. It isn't. The anti-Christian bit would just be cover.
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Fatal Freedoms
 
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Reply Fri 30 Apr, 2010 07:09 pm
@theophilus cv,
theophilus;71485 wrote:
There are two issues to consider in this case. The first is whether he had the right to make the images and the other is whether he had the right to leave them in the prayer room.

I agree that he should have the right to express his opinions any way he chooses and proclaim them openly but it seems to me that the airport has the right to decide what they want in their prayer room. It seems to me that he is infringing on the rights of the managers of the airport by using their property to express ideas they didn't agree with.

However, from reading the story I get the impression that he is being punished for making the images, not just for leaving them where he did. If that is the case then I agree that this is suppression of free speech.


I agree that a private business should have control over what material is promoted in their establishment, but the law used to prosecute this man would apply to any location private or public.

When you censor material on the basis that it may be offensive, you fall into a dangerous trap.
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