Cancel culture is a threat to ordinary people

According to a new poll, half of Brits think free speech is in danger.


Topics Free Speech Politics UK

Half of all Brits think free speech is ‘under threat’, while only 24 per cent disagree, according to a new poll.

The Savanta ComRes poll was conducted for Laurence Fox’s Reclaim Party. It surveyed 2,119 UK adults and found 49 per cent feel there is now less freedom to speak than there was five years ago, while only 12 per cent think there is more.

On the issue of immigration, it found 43 per cent are afraid to speak freely, while 28 per cent are not. On transgender rights, the figures are 42 per cent and 25 per cent respectively. Additionally, 43 per cent fear speaking their minds with police, while 23 per cent do not.

Fifty-six per cent feel comfortable speaking freely at home, but only 24 per cent have the same feeling at work.

These findings confirm what we already knew. Free speech clearly is in serious danger in the UK, as huge numbers of people moderate what they say out of fear.

And it also makes clear that, contrary to what the woke set says, cancel culture is not just a right-wing myth, made up by rich people who don’t like being criticised. It is a threat to the rights of ordinary people.

Working people have been sacked for daring to express their opinions. And even when high-profile people are punished or denied platforms due to their views, it sends a signal to everyone else to toe the line.

This poll shows that the chilling effect of all this is very real, and that we must fight for free speech all over again.

Picture by: Getty.

spiked is free, and it always will be, which is why we need your help. We don’t have a paywall, or bonus content for paying customers, because we want our arguments for freedom and democracy, against misanthropy and identity politics, to reach as many people as possible. Which is why we ask those of our readers who can afford it to chip in. One-off donations are hugely appreciated, but monthly donations are even better. They allow us to plan for the future and to grow. Even £5 a month is a huge help. It’s much cheaper than your average magazine subscription, and it ensures that spiked is free and open to all. To make either a monthly or a one-off donation, click here. Thank you for your support.

To enquire about republishing spiked’s content, a right to reply or to request a correction, please contact the managing editor, Viv Regan.