The foundation of all freedom
Freedom of speech is the cornerstone of a democratic society. It is the most important of all freedoms. It is the foundational freedom upon which every other right we enjoy - from the right to vote to the right to protest - is built. Without the freedom to think, write, publish, depict and debate as we see fit, all our political and social rights become meaningless.
Masters of our own minds
Freedom of speech makes us morally autonomous. It allows us to use our moral and mental muscles, to decide for ourselves, through discussion, debate and argument, what is a good idea and what is a bad one. It makes man the master of his own mind and fate, rather than allowing the authorities to treat us as infants by determining on our behalf what we may read, think and believe.
The midwife of enlightenment
Freedom of speech is the best guarantor of getting to the truth of a matter. Where censorship discourages debate in favour of silencing the allegedly offensive or hateful opinion, freedom of speech insists on holding people to account for their beliefs and challenging their claims in the public sphere. It is the midwife of enlightenment where censorship fuels only an unquestioning approach, and ultimately ignorance.
No censorship - ever
Freedom of speech must never be restricted. No state bans, no hate-speech legislation, no libel laws, no restrictions on the press, no mob pressure on people to conform to modern orthodoxies. For attacks on freedom of speech do not only commit the bad-enough offence of preventing someone from saying what he believes - they also reduce the rest of us to the level of children through blocking our eyes and ears, degrading our moral autonomy, stifling truth-seeking, and elevating stupidity over enlightenment.
Free speech now!
Freedom of speech makes us free. It makes us fully human, through allowing our minds to work and our views to matter. We are absolutely committed to breathing life back into this essential freedom, to fighting against all forms of censorship and intolerance, to ensuring that everyone - regardless of their viewpoint - enjoys the freedom to express themselves and to enter into the truth-determining fray of public life. We want free speech now, with no ifs, buts, erming, ahhing, restrictions, restraints or delay.
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2030 people have signed up!
Simon Curtis, Manager, United Kingdom
More speech not less is the only way to fight for a better future
Andrew Albury, Accountant, United Kingdom
When The whole World seems to be turning into Orwells' Nineteen Eighty-Four writ large- now is the time to say the unsayable - even if you disagree with it!
Josh Woodworth, Student, UK
I was banned from my union socialist society for being a strong atheist and expressing my views on my personal Facebook timeline. This was nothing to do with the society and I got abuse for it and Chinese whispers happened around the union about me. Apparently I had offended a certain "race" most people consider a religion. I am a strong atheist I dislike all religions equally.
Peter Sawyer, United Kingdom
History shows that suppression of free speech protects only tyrants, the ultimate minority group.
Gabrielle Lord, Author, Australia
Freedom of speech is non-negotiable as it underlies every other freedom we have. Silencing 'dissenters' is the work of tyrants.
Mike Marsh, Executive, UK
Compromise, contrary to the fanatical belief of its advocates, does not satisfy, but dissatisfies everybody.
Sanda Bogoevici, Language teacher, Romania
"If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear" George Orwell "Every fool was born offended." Anonymous
Michael Robson, Retired, United Kingdom
We need to campaign for a first amendment right as in the US.
Jim Jordan, none, United States of America
keep up the good work (no offense).
Andrew Grimmett, Investment Advisor, Canada
I may not agree with your point of view, but I will defend your right to say it.
Nathaniel Loso, Game designer, United States of America
Because nobody has the right to not be offended
Alan Clunnie, UK
All other freedoms flow from freedom of speech.
Michael Gardner, Law student, UK
Freedom of speech is indivisible and should be an irreducible public good, helping, as it does, to expose misconduct and the vanities of those in positions of power and influence. I've enjoyed Spiked's efforts in defending a free society and look forward to it's continuing to do so.
Karen Harradine, Freelance journalist, UK
Freedom of speech is a cornerstone of democracy. Without it we are all damned.
Bettina Eberle-Gray, Deutschland
Freedom of Speech is the basis for democracy. It's as simple as that.
Simon Barrett, Guernsey • Clare Haslett, United Kingdom • Andrew Grimmett, Canada • Graham King, UK • Jorge Javier Cervera Rodriguez, Mexico • Bart Roozendaal, UK • Marco Santucci, UK • Daniel Hammarberg, Sweden • Craig Garsed, UK • Neil Ross, USA • Matthew Robinson, Cambodia • Malcolm Turner, United Kingdom • Alan Hughes, Wales • Aidan Condie, United Kingdom • sharmini brookes, South Africa • Anders Madsen, Prefer to be hidden • nigel vogt, UK • John Hider, England • Itamar Shein, UK • Katrina Thomson, United Kingdom • K McCulloch, Canada • Max Butti, United Kingdom • Nikos Sotirakopoulos, United Kingdom • Peter Dannenbaum, UK • Julia Crighton, uk • Chrstie Davies, UK • David Shear, Spain • Robert Sullivan, United Kingdom • Jason Cullen, UK • Felix Saint-Leger, United Kingdom • Henry Kadoch, United States • David Mortimer, United Kingdom • Steve Foulger, United Kingdom • Kevin Morris, • Graham Finnie, UK • Conrad Spencer, United Kingdom • Eleanor Binks, United Kingdom • Joshua Wii, United States • Brian Burnell, United Kingdom • Paul Ireland, UK • Louise Turnbull, UK • Alan Metchem, England • Paul Warren, UK • Jason Kennedy, UK • Ted Getzel, USA • Gillian Cockwill, United Kingdom • Bertiffiny Sumbry, usa • Valerie Price, CANADA • Robin Crosthwaite, Scotland • David Armstrong, Thailand • Robert Hutchings, United Kingdom • John Mason, Australia • Andrew Weeks, Australia • Ricardo Lima, Brazil • Tony Murray, Ireland • Julian Tol, Australia • Vincent Bate, England • Max Cunningham, United Kingdom • Michael Stonnell, United Kingdom • Lenuța Berinde, România • Dan Clayton, UK • Cameron Stewart, Scotland • Liam Taylor, United Kingdom • Shawna Murray MD, SilencedInUSA • Paul Theato, England • David Frampton, Australia • Richard Sheldrake, United Kingdom • Michael Diver , Scotland • Anthony Mills, United Kingdom • Phillip McCafferty, United Kingdom • Richard Martin, Spain • Peter Spence, Peru • David Ward, Canada • Alexander Mengden, Deutschland • john price, uk • Obadiah Slope, ENGLAND love it or leave • Julie Lee, • Tom Madden, United States • James Shepherd, France • David Martin, United Kingdom • Philip Hammond, UK • Michael O'Donnell, United States • Ray Gilliam, USA • Jim McCrudden, Australia • Roger Sutherland, United Kingdom • Ben Smith, Australia • Jim Sieyes, Scotland, UK • Brian Winston, United Kingdom • Billy Corr, Libya • Patrick Walsh, Ireland • John Norman, England • Carl Barjer, England • Jeremy Edmeades, Australia • Livio Pavone, United Kingdom • Daniel Blanco, Costa Rica • Alan Miller, UK / US • Edward Almond, USA • Robert Biddulph, UK • Tara Lomas, United Kingdom
Other signatories include:
Free speech events
Explore the crisis afflicting our core freedoms in Washington, DC, 15 October.Get tickets