Free speech applies even to those spewing bile, Vancouver Sun, March 31, 2009

British Member of Parliament George Galloway and his apologists are nothing but hypocrites who no more believe in free speech than I believe that the moon is made of green cheese. They and their ilk would have prevented former U.S. President George W. Bush from speaking in Calgary, did in fact prevent incoming Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu from speaking at Concordia University in Montreal and kept right wing Dutch politician Geert Wilders from speaking in England.

They also regularly try to shout down and shut up people who express views that are contrary to theirs in public, during Israeli Apartheid Week events for example. This will no doubt happen during upcoming Durban 2 events as well. Their hypocrisy is breathtaking and free speech is the last thing they believe in, despite their protestations.

Nevertheless, the Harper government and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney are dead wrong to keep Galloway out of the country and prevent him from speaking here. Free speech applies to everyone, no matter how much we disagree with them. It either exists or it doesn’t and if it doesn’t our democratic way of life is well and truly threatened. Keeping Galloway from the lecturn indicates a profound lack of respect and understanding for our democratic values and the nature of our society. It is very worrisome, far more worrisome than allowing him to spew his bile.

Let him in, let him speak and arrest and prosecute him if he violates any of our hate laws.

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