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Pierre-Olivier Bastien-Dionne

Re: American Left Taking the High Ground

Dear Editor,I went on your website this morning to read new articles. I really like most of the articles that are published in your journal. I find a lot of intelligent people using common sense to defend freedom. But this morning was different. I read an article titled “American Left Taking the High Ground”. Sincerely, I was shocked because it strongly opposes the Statement of Principles expressed by the Prince Arthur Herald. Principle 18 reads as follows: “Freedom of speech and expression, particularly in Canadian political life.” Principle 20 reads, “The freedom of the press, to inform the public and contribute to the Canadian public sphere.”  I would never forbid the author to express his views, but I do not believe that the Herald is the right paper to do it.Freedom of expression is essential in democracy. The reason for this is that democracy relies on the common sense of every citizen. They should be exposed to all opinions, so that they can choose for themselves. Imposing restrictions on speech is a form of tyranny, denying the rights of some to express their ideas and their identity. Limits on free speech are necessary, so debates are made in respect of our opponents, and our laws forbid defamation, fraud, and incitation to violence. Beyond these boundaries anything can be, in principle, said. So more speech is in fact not a bad thing, but a good thing, because it enlightens the people so that they can make better choices for themselves. Free speech allows us to find the truth about something. It is the motor that drives innovation, by allowing information to circulate, resulting in greater prosperity. Freedom of speech is essential in the Western tradition. It is a product of an 800 year old tradition of constitutional right as enumerated in the Magna… Read More