The Federal government has indicated that it will intervene on behalf of the ultra conservative news company, The Rebel, who were denied media accreditation for the upcoming United Nations climate conference.
It appears that the reason for the denial was that the UN committee was uncomfortable with The Rebel’s hard right attitude on issues and felt that The Rebel doesn’t offer a ‘balanced’ perspective on the topic of climate change.
While many people may agree with that assessment, they’re missing the point.
This isn’t about only allowing agreeable opinions, it’s about free speech.
As historian Evelyn Beatrice Hall once wrote, I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.
That statement has served as the foundation for the freedom of speech that we hold so dear in our society.
One of the greatest challenges for those who cherish freedom of speech and freedom of the press is to defend someone who you find disagreeable and that may well be the case with the Federal government.
The Rebel has been critical of this government and their policies and it may seem odd that the government would advocate on their behalf, but it’s the right thing to do.
If we’re going to talk the talk about free speech, we have to walk the walk too.