Is free speech under threat?
The word Black is now an inherently racist “microaggression”, and the word Bossy is now considered sexist and oppressive.
Obesity is now a respectable choice of lifestyle instead of a serious health concern, and Gay is now a harmful description of homosexuality.
Feminist Anita Sarkeesian implores the United Nations to censor criticism and ridicule on Twitter, and is now on the board of Twitter’s new Trust and Safety initiative to police the speech and expression of its users.
Stephen Fry closed his Twitter account because an army of left wing loons couldn’t take a joke he made about a friend who happened to be a woman.
Universities in America now have “safe spaces” for students emotionally traumatised by opinions and counterarguments.
World-famous atheist and biologist Richard Dawkins was disinvited from speaking at a Science and Skepticism conference because he Tweeted a video that pokes fun at radical feminism.
Today, everything is a “trigger”.
I believe rational thought has a foot in the grave and free speech has a noose around its neck. I think the pendulum of society has swung left too far, and it’s largely thanks to sanctimonious social justice warriors and narrative-over-fact third wave feminists.
Growing a backbone is one of life’s many necessities. If you’re going to project your voice and discuss your ideas in a public space, you need to accept the likelihood that some people will criticise, ridicule or even hate you. But a politically correct society doesn’t accept this reality. It instead promotes a fearful and hypersensitive culture that treats the quill as a murder weapon and makes everyone even more insecure. The fact is, words are just words and they are never without context.
A mark of a healthy individual is a capacity to moderate your emotions and reactions. You have no control over the opinions of others, and you will encounter opposition no matter what position you take.
If a word or opinion on the internet can make you want to hang yourself, you might want to rethink which machine in that picture needs oil before you go surfing the waves of free speech. If an off-hand remark is enough to shatter your choice of career or lifestyle, you surely couldn’t have been very committed in the first place, and your level of self confidence might need some work.
Self expression, sense of humour and ridicule have been healthy components of an evolving society since the dawn of time. Individualism is generally celebrated in Western cultures, and poking fun at one and other is a way of illuminating reality and allows us to see ourselves and our actions in different ways.