The mainstream media has labelled women's rights campaigner Posie Parker an 'anti-transgender activist.' Despite the Labour Government scrapping most its proposed 'hate speech' law reforms in November, the political intolerance that bred them still stalks the land.
IN 2019 THE Canadian women's right campaigner Meghan Murphy faced determined opposition throughout her New Zealand visit. Speak Up for Women, who sponsored her speaking tour, faced major difficulties booking venues. That included Massey University reversing its decision to allow Murphy to speak on its Wellington campus.
ACT MP David Seymour expressed his concern that Speak Up for Women were being denied their democratic right to publicly express their views. He booked Meghan Murphy and Feminism 2020 into the Banquet Hall at Parliament. The sold-out event went off without a hitch and the world did not come to an end.
Murphy's crime was that, in defending the rights of women, she expressed contrary views on transgender politics that her opponents strenuously disagreed with. Not prepared to debate the issues and allow a free exchange of views, Murphy's opponents simply tried to shut her down.
At the time the Listener warned of the encroaching dangers to free speech:
'We live in a time when the merely contradicted are claiming persecution so successfully that any debate deemed controversial is immediately shut down. Whether or not the Government decides we need to strengthen our hate speech law, the world is already on a dangerous hair-trigger path towards vigilante censorship of free speech.'
The Labour Government scrapped the majority of its proposed 'hate speech' law reforms in November last year. But the political intolerance that inspired them still stalks the land.
This time the target is UK women's right's activist Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull, also known as Posie Parker. Presently in Australia she is due to arrive in New Zealand on Friday. Her political opponents want her banned from entering the country on the grounds her visit would be a risk to public order. But this is simply a ruse to try and shut her down and there is no evidence to suggest that she represents any kind of risk. But there remains the real possibility that Parker's opponents will try to disrupt her meetings.
After a group of Neo-Nazis attempted to gatecrash Parker's meeting in Melbourne in order to promote themselves, her opponents have attempted to associate Parker with neo-fascist politics. Green Party MP Ricardo Menendez-March has claimed that her visit would 'encourage antisemitism'. But this is an absurd argument especially in the light of the Australian Jewish Association coming out in support of Parker and emphasising that she had no association with neo-fascist politics.
National Party deputy leader Nicola Willis told RNZ that Immigration New Zealand would struggle to find evidence to keep Keen-Minshull out of the country and believed she should be allowed entry.
'This is a free and liberal democracy and part of that is that we believe in freedom of expression even when we really don't like the views of those that are expressing themselves freely.
'We uphold that right. And I'm a big believer that sunlight is a good disinfectant. Where people have views that some of us find abhorrent, sometimes the best thing is to allow others to respond with their counter views.'
It seems that the conservative right, in New Zealand at least, has become the champion of free speech. Historically that has been the role of the left. But we live in times when the traditional left has been supplanted by a woke liberal left that is indifferent to the principles of free speech and wants the state to put limits on political debate and expression.
Politicians like Ricardo Menendez March and Wellington mayor Tory Whanau need to be reminded of what American socialist Eugene Debs wrote: 'Without free speech there is no progress, and the people stagnate.'
If transgender activists stop Posie Parker coming here, there will be a lot of people hating on the LGBTQ community. Is that what they want ?ReplyDelete
Yes it is. The more they can provoke a reaction, the more they can claim to be victims that need protection from those that disagree with them.Delete