When opinions go underground
I saw a funny meme today, “Get fired in 5 to 10 years time, say what you like on twitter and wait for 5-10 years”
If people are vilified for having an opinion, no matter how ugly it looks, they will soon take their thoughts underground and we will be left with the shadows to fight.
No matter how hard speech is policed, that approach never changes the way people think. The problem is not necessarily in what people say, but more in what they truly think and do.
There is a reason why the freedom of speech has been fought for in many parts of the world for centuries. If I don’t know what you are thinking by what you say, then I am never able to engage you in dialogue and debate and put up strong reasons for you to change your mind.
As much as each person has the responsibility to watch what they say and how they say it, censorship will affect all of the good, the bad and the downright ugly.
Where opinion crosses over to incitement to harm others, or to deny the truth of the rights of others, there we must draw a line. It is a delicate balance that needs to be found, but it is essential to creating a society that is fairer and free from all forms of oppression.