Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Aussie Calls for an End to Section 18, Australia's Section 13

Who knew the same nonsense was going on Down Under? Someone who's agin the censorship describes the Aussie equivalent of Canada's now-defunct censorship provision like this:
It is the one that makes vulnerable to legal assault any speech that is "reasonably likely to offend, insult, humiliate or intimidate" listeners or readers - the provision having been interpreted by the courts, bizarrely in my view, as one to be judged through the eyes of a reasonable member of the criticised group. So that more or less means those claiming to be victims, or playing the victim, will be used as the test of what offends, insults, humiliates or intimidates.
That's bonkers in my opinion. And it's certainly a big constraint on the free flow of opinions and speech. It wholly discounts the need, in any free society, for people to grow a thick skin and not play the victim in order to shut down views they don't like, however articulated. 
Quite right. But not knowing enough about political correctness in Australia, it's unclear to me if there's sufficient gumption and political will to get rid of it.

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