A pro-censorship Muslim inadvertently makes the case for Free Speech

Reading the BBC article on the trouble at UCL caused by objections to a student society posting the excellent Jesus & Mo cartoons on their Facebook page I was struck by the way in which the spokesman for the Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association when speaking out in opposition to free speech managed to neatly summarise exactly why it’s so important:

“The Ahmadiyya Muslim Youth Association is continuing with its protest against the image, saying it has wider implications.

Adam Walker, the association’s national spokesperson, said the two student groups had worked well together in the past and said the offence was unnecessary.

“The principle is more important than who is being attacked – this time it is Muslims and Christians but in the future it could be atheists themselves.

“There is no need to print these things other than to cause offence and history has told us that these things cause offence.”

He added: “I wouldn’t say we’re specifically pursuing UCL atheist society, it’s more about the broader principle.””

Mr Walker manages the impressive feat of being simultaneously completely wrong and wholly correct; the offence is entirely unnecessary and the principle is much more important than who is being “attacked”.

Clearly if Christians, Muslims, Atheists & everyone else is able to prohibit speech they merely find “offensive” then all speech will be banned as there’s nothing which doesn’t upset someone.

You’d hope that the Ahmadiyya Association at least would have some appreciation of this as Ahmadis  are regarded as a heretical sect by many Muslims and subject to persecution in many Muslims majority nations. It’s sad that despite this the Ahmadiyya Association seems to be opposing the secular liberal values which give them the freedom to practice their faith as they choose in the UK.

Jesus, Mo & the barmaid discuss freedom of expression


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