We value freedom of expression and freedom of speech in this country. That is absolutely essential in underpinning our democracy. But we also value tolerance to others. We also value tolerance in relation to religions. …
I think we need to ensure that, yes, it is right that people can have that freedom of expression. But in doing so, that right has a responsibility, too. And that is a responsibility to recognize the importance of tolerance to others.
This heralds the end of the freedom of speech in Britain, for May’s statement is flatly self-contradictory. Who will decide whether one’s criticism of Islam has shaded over into becoming “intolerant”? Presumably the police or some governing authorities.
But the freedom of speech is designed precisely to protect people from being prosecuted or persecuted by the governing authorities because their speech dissents from the accepted line. It was developed as a safeguard against tyranny.
By introducing this massive exception, May is turning the freedom of speech on its head and emptying it of all meaning. She is also implying that the British government will now be bringing the full force of the law against those who are deemed intolerant, and indeed, that has already begun.
Tolerance to whom? Why some but not others? Who gets to decide that? Our tyrannical ruling class. Very Orwellian.
hat-tip Scott of the Pacific