Media

London School of Economics strips Christian words Lent, Easter from term calendar

Toby Young, general secretary of the Free Speech Union, said the university’s decision to strip Christian words from semester names “reflects the fact that the LSE, like most British universities, is in thrall to a new religious cult — the church of woke — that is far more dogmatic than Christianity,” LBC reported.

Anugrah Kumar, The Christian Post, 30th January 2023.

Petition calling for ITV to keep Jeremy Clarkson as Who Wants To Be A Millionaire host passes 35,000

This had led to Free Speech Union starting a petition to have him remain as the host. At the time of writing, the petition has over 35,000 signatures. In a tweet, Free Speech Union said “Please sign and re-tweet this petition urging ITV not to cancel Jeremy Clarkson.”
“If people make mistakes and then apologise for them, we should give them the benefit of the doubt, not seek to destroy their livelihoods and turn them into social pariahs.”

Daniel Mcneil, The Scotsman, 23rd January 2023.

More than 34,000 fans sign petition urging ITV boss Carolyn McCall not to sack Jeremy Clarkson from Who Wants to be a Millionaire?

Now a petition set up by the Free Speech Union appeals to ITV bosses to “please don’t fire Jeremy Clarkson” and claims that some of those who opposed the column in the aftermath of its publication “do not appear to really believe Mr Clarkson’s remarks put anyone at risk.”
The statement claims that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are attempting to “destroy Mr Clarkson’s career” and are therefore “far more harmful to him than anything he said about the Duchess”.

Dan Sales, MailOnline, 23rd January 2023.

Petition calling for ITV to keep Jeremy Clarkson reaches over 22,000 signatures – following “Amazon axe”

However, this has prompted the Free Speech Union to create a petition for Clarkson to remain on the show. ‘If people make mistakes and then apologise for them, we should give them the benefit of the doubt, not seek to destroy their livelihoods and turn them into social pariahs,” the petition on Change.org said.

Stella Akinwumi, Metro, 22nd January 2023.

Rishi Sunak’s free speech champion will ‘restore some sanity’ to English universities

A spokesperson from the Free Speech Union (FSU), which is representing academics who allege they were violently threatened by LGBT+ activists, told Express.co.uk: “We’re contacted every week by students and academics who need our help, who are frightened about the consequences of speaking out in today’s stifling universities.
“The problem has spread far beyond higher education to workplaces, businesses, and the NHS. The free speech champion can help tackle the problem at source, and restore free speech – and some sanity – to England’s universities, and help those who are still brave enough to speak their minds.”

Luke Whelan, Daily Express, 22nd January 2023.

Join Forces and Fight for Freedom

Last Saturday, January 7th, we hosted a conference on the challenges to free speech. Toby Young, chairman of the Free Speech Union talked about how our fear of unlikely catastrophes may frighten us into accepting the most outrageous restrictions on our personal freedom and freedom of expression.

Thorsteinn Siglaugsson, Brownstone Institute, 19th January 2023.

Punishing the innocent

Later, with respect to the “Online Safety Bill”, which has brought typically docile Conservative MPs to a fever pitch in their efforts to stop people being mean to them on Twitter, the discussion mixed genuine evils like child pornography and terrorist materials with mere “offensive” speech among phenomena that must be cleared off the Internet, leading Toby Young of the Free Speech Union to comment:
… the Bill does little to tackle genuine harms such as the distribution of child pornography or instructions on how to make bombs … and instead risks censoring swathes of online content that’s perfectly legal.

Ben Sixsmith, The Critic, 18th January 2023.