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.
support the manifesto
2641 people have signed up!
Andrew Woolford, England/UK
I support this manifesto in it's near entirety. My only concern is the libel laws stuff, the rest I agree with. But still, consider it signed.
Gerard Drummond, Retired/member of the IPA, Australia
Freedom of Speech is important to all
Barbara Hewson, Lawyer writer and researcher, Ireland
Spiked is a beacon of light in an increasingly dark and disturbing world.
George Wake, Retired research scientist, England
For too long it has been 'respectable' or 'right on' to shout down those who do not conform to the posturing trendy 'we're all some sort of minority under threat from whoever we choose, however unrealistically, to label oppressor' cliques of self interested idiots with hidden agendas. Well done Spiked for the first blows in neutralising this verminous trendiness
Tom Addiscott, Retired, UK
I agree with the manifesto. Also relevant, stop climate censorship!
Earl O'Neill , Self employed landscape gardener , Australia
"I gotta right, a right to say anything I want, any old time" - The Stooges, 1973, a cracking rock and roll song.
Philip Nicolas, Architect, UK
John Clemo, Teacher, UK
Free Speech for One & All : irrespective of what you have to say, you have the right to say it. Who would have thought that this would be such an issue in the C21st?
Terje Tønnessen, Kulturforlaget BRAK, Norge
Read & Sign this very important Message!
Walter Grinder, Retired, USA
Keep up your great work! There are few more important issues in today's world.
Paul Corica, Finance, England
Let's keep the lights of freedom shining brightly.
Gayle MURPHY, Administration & Promotions Officer, Australia
Anyone with even a minimal knowledge of history (including the 20th Century), can see the signs in the lead-up to authoritarianism and totalitarianism in our leadership and governments. We need to be on our guard at all times and speak up in the early stages of similar manifestations or risk repeating terrible mistakes of the past.
Dymphna Gates, United States • Simon Murray, United Kingdom • Justine Brown, UK • John Foley, UK • Dr B Redfearn, Isle of Man, British Isles • keith harris, UK • Dominic Hogan, United Kingdom • Shira Salingre, Scotland, United Kingdom • Dr B Redfearn, uk • Vernon Warner, UK • Kevin Carlson, United States • Bryan Stewart, Bulgaria • Alice Smith, United Kingdom • james morris, Australia • Dana Kidson, United Kingdom • Scott Lovett, Australia • Gabriel Mell, United Kingdom • Christopher Bird, • David West, UK • Andrew Cox, United Kingdom • Kevin Burctoolla, UK • Helene Groen, Denmark • Sean O'Donnell, Ireland • Antonio Navarro Jr, United States • Cyril Ignatius Kendrick, United States • David Lamb, United Kingdom • Tyler Hopkinson, Canada • John Sangster , United Kingdom. • Tony Moclair, Australia • Martin Bright, England • Andrew Bodinger, Wales • Ron King, USA • Simon Roguska, United Kingdom • william simpson, UK • John Lalor, Ireland • David Brenner , United States • Raymond Teather, England • Zulu Khosa, Pakistan • Robert Hay, Australia • Kenneth Phin, UK • Kaye Azrall, Philippines • Ian Grainger, UK • Grant Gehr, United States • Massimo Butti, UK • Rachel Taylor, United Kingdom • Vaidas Morkevicius, Lithuania • Dr Nicholas Ashley, England • Malcolm Rutherford, UK • Mike Rouse, Uk • Jennifer Flowers, Australia • Jimmie Johnson , USA • Arthur Disbury, England • Lee Sheppard, UK • Jeffrey Bale, United States • Julie Sopp, United Kingdom • Kristian Niemietz, UK • Charlie Parker, United Kingdom • Hagar Kennemo, Denmark • Richard Cole, Australia • João Carlos Honório Pedro, Portugal • Cameron Stewart, Scotland • Lee Gaizak Brooks, France • Marcia Gigante, Portugal • Rosamund Cuckston, UK • Neil Ashley, United Kingdom • Jim Bradshaw, Spain • drew cormack, UK • Carolyn Nock, Australia • Bethan Smith, UK • Christopher Hunt, Canada • Livio Pavone, United Kingdom • Roger Holmes, Australia • David Chisholm, Australia • Roy Mackay, Scotland • Jeff Smith, UK • Ian Martin, UK • Jeff Botterill, United Kingdom • Assaf Vardi, Israel • Ashley Verinder, United Kingdom • Clive Pearce, United Kingdom • Xavier Hirschfled, Australia • Max Rogozin, Russia • John Salmon, United Kingdom • Andrew James, United Kingdom • Forest Phelps, United States • Adrienne Kincaid , United States • Jordan Hall, United Kingdom (England • yuki kappes, Germany • geoff rees, england • Dudebro McNeckbeard, US • David Taylor, UK • Jon Holbrook, United Kingdom • Alistair Gordon, England • Tyler Fenby, USA • James Hampson, United States of America • Alec Bennett, United Kingdom • Max Clemmens, Mexico • Michael Diver , Scotland • Justin Coplin, United States
Other signatories include:
Free speech events
Explore the crisis afflicting our core freedoms in Washington, DC, 15 October.Get tickets