It’s puzzling to find that many of my old hippy, libertarian and lefty mates are not outraged by a federal government proposal to put a stranglehold on free expression. One can only hope that loyalty to Labor does not trump basic liberties.
Every time we give away a little free speech here or restrain a little free speech there, we chip away at the cornerstone of our democracy. Before we have raised an eyebrow, let alone a voice, we have lost the ability to robustly test ideas, debate questions big and small and to laugh freely without fear. It hardly needs saying that freedoms are easily lost and not so easily won. Then again, maybe it does need saying – again and again to check our natural tendency to complacency.