The Free Society Institute stands with Charlie Hebdo and all defenders of free speech and civil liberty in condemning the murder of two police officers, three cartoonists, and eight journalists in Paris on January 7. As offended as those of the Muslim faith might find blasphemy to be, that offence pales into insignificance compared to… Continue reading Statement on Charlie Hebdo attack – Free Society Institute
The IHEU is today releasing a report on discrimination against non-religious people, with examples drawn from all over the world. It makes for interesting reading, because in addition to all the cases that get widespread media attention, the problem of discrimination against the non-religious is perhaps a larger one than many people realise. The report… Continue reading IHEU report on social media and discrimination against the non-religious
Take a vast chasm, a tightrope, pea-soup mists and swirling, vicious gusts of wind – then a person steps onto that rope, destination unseen. Such are the ingredients for the kind of ‘recipe for disaster’ if a country embarks on creating charter upon charter of special privileges for one or more interest groups – no… Continue reading Staring into the abyss of special privileges
The Press Freedom Commission “released a call for the SA public to voice its opinion about press freedom and the regulation of print media”. What follows is a submission made by the FSI Chairman (not a consensus statement by the FSI generally). To whom it may concern, SUBMISSION WITH REGARD TO PRESS FREEDOM AND… Continue reading Comment to the Press Freedom Commission on regulating the print media
Anyone in Cape Town and surrounding areas is encouraged to attend any of these events – but particularly the march on Saturday, in protest of the POI Bill. Students Against Secrecy, a coalition of student organizations have put together a week of action to raise awareness about and activism against the Protection of Information Bill.… Continue reading Stop Secrecy Week
The Kuli Roberts column, Bitch’s Brew, has been cancelled by Avusa and the Sunday World newspaper following the publication of a “racist” column which expressed various stereotypes related to a subsection of South Africans sometimes described as ‘coloureds’. But as offensive as the column might have been to some, is there ever a good reason… Continue reading Moralistic outrage chills free speech
Despite the stated commitment of Awka Ibom State Governor Goodswill Akpabio to rooting out the exploitation of children for the Pentecostal witch industry, people like Leo – who are allies in that cause – are frequently arrested and subjected to other rights violations.
The South African Charter of Religious Rights and Freedoms should be of concern to all who are committed to South Africa’s Constitutional values, particularly those endorsing and defending freedom of speech.
What is missing in the protests against Terry Jones’s plans to burn a Quran, as well as Mohammed Vawda’s plan to burn a Bible, is why anyone else should care about your beliefs, or desist from offending those beliefs. We can agree that doing so is rude, offensive, insensitive and all the rest, but these… Continue reading Freedom of speech and burning holy books
Free speech is not the only value that democratic societies subscribe to. Nor does, or should, our commitment to free speech always have to trump competing values such as national security or personal dignity. But the principle of free speech nevertheless stands in need of exceptional, and exceptionally strong, counterarguments in cases where we are… Continue reading Threats to a free media