The Right and Privilege of Freedom of Speech - New Conservative NZ

The Right and Privilege of Freedom of Speech

New Conservative sees freedom of speech as an essential pillar to robust and effective democracy. The right to speak freely is also a privilege, and it must be used with respect for people with differing opinions.

There is an integral role that Freedom of Speech holds within any nation. That is to allow the people and the government to communicate with each other to make the best decisions possible and to allow the people to hold any governmental organisation, at any level, to account. This has been proven many times throughout the world, most recently in France where tens of thousands of French citizens displayed their displeasure towards President Macron’s COVID regulations. After the days long protests, which were civil and peaceful overall, the French president walked back his vaccine passport requirements.

All other freedoms stem from Freedom of Speech. Not one person can espouse a new concept or idea, thought or philosophy if their speech is limited. No religion, or ideology can spread without the use of speech, as it is vital to getting any message to the masses. People gather together to discuss or even debate new concepts, ideas or religions, to determine the right course of action. This is impossible if speech is limited by the government. This is a profoundly important right, with no greater right existing alongside it. Having a government or any organisation try to limit the speech of the people has only detrimental effects on a nation’s society and morale overall.

Freedom of Speech is exactly that. You have the right to speak freely, without legal repercussions from the government or any of its agencies therein. There are societal and personal consequences for the harmful use of this freedom. However, these are not in any way a limitation on the right to speak freely. 

There is an adage that sums up the position of New Conservative’s policy on free speech: “I may not agree with what you may say, but I will fight to the death to defend your right to say it.” This has been the approach of many throughout history and it is an attitude New Zealanders should adopt going forward, if we want to retain our right to free speech.

We have witnessed in recent days the public shaming and bullying of people who dare to express in a respectful manner their choice in relation to mandatory vaccination. It is appalling, and this abuse of freedom of speech is harmful and should carry consequences, not because of differing opinions, but because of malicious intent to cause harm.

ENDS

Caleb Ansell, New Conservative Civil Liberties Spokesman