Home

Musings and personal views of a freelance journalist and writer, barrister and newbie blogger. I am the copyright owner, and all my rights are reserved in my publications past or present.

I assert my right to hold opinions and to impart information and ideas, without interference and regardless of frontiers, and without persecution by the lunatic fringe.

As Sedley LJ has observed in Redmond-Bate v DPP (1999) 7 NHRC 375 at 382-3 :

Free speech includes not only the inoffensive but the irritating, the contentious, the eccentric, the heretical, the unwelcome and the provocative provided it does not tend to provoke violence. Freedom only to speak inoffensively is not worth having. What Speakers’ Corner (where the law applies as fully as anywhere else) demonstrates is the tolerance which is both extended by the law to opinion of every kind and expected by the law in the conduct of those who disagree, even strongly, with what they hear. From the condemnation of Socrates to the persecution of modern writers and journalists, our world has seen too many examples of state control of unofficial ideas. A central purpose of the European Convention on Human Rights has been to set close limits to any such assumed power. We in this country continue to owe a debt to the jury which in 1670 refused to convict the Quakers William Penn and William Mead for preaching ideas which offended against state orthodoxy. [bold emphasis added]

Indeed.

Cui dono lepidum novum libellum

Arido modo pumice expolitum?