We Must Defend Free Thought


The unpleasant reality that we must face today is that there is a small subset of hard-line ideologues who oppose open discourse altogether. The fact that you may not feel comfortable speaking your mind openly, and may feel afraid of serious consequences, is viewed by these people as an accomplishment. It is easy to ignore this reality, but when it harms people we admire, and threatens to stifle earnest discussions taking place in good faith, this reality must be dealt with head-on.

Their position is that debate "normalises" unsavoury people and that to platform anyone with right-of-centre views is the equivalent to "legitimising Nazis". This fanatical minority is tiny in number but has successfully cowed university administrators, corporate leaders, and countless thoughtful people into silence. So successful are their tactics, they have even instilled climates of fear in institutions that were established with the explicit purpose of defending free thought. If these institutions cannot resist such vandals, who can?

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