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Hate Speech or Free Speech: More on the Folau controversy – what the Archbishop of Sydney said


As Thomas Paine wrote:

He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself.

In the Australian Daily Telegraph we see this in an article by Jack Houghton

The Archbishop of Sydney Glenn Davies also came to defence of the Folaus on Tuesday, saying being able to express your faith publicly was a “fundamental importance in any democracy”.

“It is of great concern to many Australians that this right is being denied and vilified,” he said. “At the moment, only one side is being heard.

“The way in which Folau’s motives have been impugned and his avenues of support have been cut off smacks of a new and ugly Australia where dissent from narrow cultural views is not tolerated.”

I disagree with Folau’s views, but he is entitled to espouse them. More importantly if freedom of religion and free speech is to mean anything, it means that his right to hold those views and espouse them should be defended. If they are not, then the freedom of everybody is threatened.

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