Breaking the law by thinking

Many times I have been tempted to write something that is illegal just because it is.

There should be no limits on freedom of speech. If a Councillor from Hove wants to wrongly suggest that all gay men are paedophiles, he should lose his seat at the next election, but he shouldn't be hauled before a Magistrates Court. If Ann Robinson wants to suggest that Welsh people are boring or if David Cameron wants to describe English people as ignorant, they should be able to without being interviewed by the police.

If a girl wears a T-shirt saying "Bollocks to Blair", she should. And if I want to say that all sheep are secretly big marshmallows, I should be allowed to.

When Little Britain shows people being treated poorly by others our reaction is shock that someone (a character in the show) would say such things. Our shock is because we really have been brainwashed about political correctness.

Political correctness is absolutely a good thing in principle. Saying nasty things to people is clearly silly and won't lead to a cohesive and happy society. But this is about what "should be", not what "must be"; this is about what we'd like, not what should be law.

Amnesty International is probably more concerned about Iranian, Chinese and Zimbabwean bloggers than the English, but there's a problem here too.

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