Without the possibility of offence we would be a bland, totalitarian state devoid of interest, imagination and ideas.
Controversial Canadians Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux have built an impressive global profile by testing the boundaries and pressure points of that ecosystem. They are variably described as far and alt-Right commentators and provocateurs. They want to visit New Zealand and offer their polarising views on, among many things, immigration, gender and feminism. …
We believe that what they are likely to present may qualify as offensive to some, but will fall below what the great majority of Kiwis would regard as hate speech.
Those groups concerned about potential insults against their religion or sexual orientation should instead be comforted that this country allows such a breadth of opinion without reacting with hatred or oppression from other parties, including the state. As happens in some parts of the world.
Healthy, robust debate is as essential to our democracy as the right to vote, possibly more so.
Yep, but a point sadly lost on Saziah Bashir who writes at RNZ:
That there needs to be a debate on Islam in New Zealand is itself a ridiculous proposition because when was the last time we needed a national debate on any other religion, despite the violence some so-called members of that religion may be perpetrating somewhere in the world?
So Bashir says no one should be allowed to debate Islam. This is despite there being 2,043 seperate Islamic terror attacks in 2017 which killed 16,367 people and wounded 14,360 more.
And as it happens other religions get scrutinised and criticised all the time also. This is as it should be.