Speakers’ Corner: “the irritating, the contentious, the eccentric, the heretical, the unwelcome and the provocative.”

by awindram

“Free speech includes not only the inoffensive but the irritating, the contentious, the eccentric, the heretical, the unwelcome and the provocative provided it does not tend to provoke violence. Freedom only to speak inoffensively is not worth having. What Speakers’ Corner (where the law applies as fully as anywhere else) demonstrates is the tolerance which is both extended by the law to opinion of every kind and expected by the law in the conduct of those who disagree, even strongly, with what they hear.”

Lord Justice Sedley, Redmond-Bate v Director of Public Prosecutions (1999).

Speakers’ Corner, Hyde Park, 15 September, 2013.

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