YASSMIN STILL DOES NOT GET IT – Freedom of speech is a foreign land. A very foreign land:

Andrew Bolt, are you up to the challenge?

Mechanical engineer, author and social justice activist¬†Yassmin Abdel-Magied has provoked the right-wing columnist:¬†“If Andrew Bolt cares so much about freedom of speech as much as he reckons, he should have defended me.

“Where were all the defenders of freedom of speech in my case?”…

Ms Abdel-Magied said the experience taught her that freedom of speech was not shared equally by all Australians.

“The conversation is not on my terms, it’s not on the terms of any marginalised group,” Ms Abdel-Magied said.

Andrew Bolt has already replied (“Yassmin Abdel-Magied is not demanding free speech but freedom from criticism. She is demanding the freedom of a narcissist.”) so I don’t need to speak on his behalf (but what if I identify as Bolt?).

How complicated is it that a “mechanical engineer, author and social justice activist” cannot comprehend the concept of free speech? As The Daily Chrenk readers might recall, I have always said that Yassmin has every right to say what she wants and I have every right to say that what she says is bullshit. To criticise someone is not to deny them the right to speak. To deny someone the right to speak is to prohibit them by law and punish them if they do, or otherwise actually silence them.


Yassmin has not been prosecuted or dragged before the Australian Human Rights Commission; neither Facebook nor Twitter has denied her the forum, and media outlets lined up to report her words and allow her to respond to her critics. And that’s wonderful; that’s what freedom of speech is all about. If the government was trying to silence her, I would stand up and defend her right to free speech. The government wasn’t, so there was nothing to defend from anyone. See the difference again?

Freedom of speech is not agreement. Freedom of speech is not applause. Freedom of speech is not a licence to silence any criticism. And the world is not one big Festival of Dangerous Ideas or a similar progressive self-love-fest and an echo chamber.