Freedom of speech, and why Britain needs a constitution

Thursday, 18th March 2021

Jeremy Corbyn_election night June 2017

Jeremy Corbyn

THE rights of freedom of expression in this country were built on mass movements, for example the Suffragettes and the 17th-century English revolution.

Since the decline of the British Empire, and the stuttering of the economy in the last few years, there has been a greater focus on democratic rights.

A latest instance of this is the High Court libel case with Jeremy Corbyn, who denies remarks he made were defamatory. The judge had made a ruling on whether words the former Labour leader had used were facts or opinion.

The other instance is the Piers Morgan case. The man more than engages in histrionics. Really, he makes a living out of extreme self-opinionated arguments.

The question of whether he is “a racist” has come about because of the way in which the monarchy is dissembling.

It would be impossible for there to be no racialistic thoughts in the royalty, because its power came out of colonialism. It created the rich economy that laid the foundation of today’s capitalism.

Fortunately, the new coming generation of youngsters, according to polls, do not have the same attachment to the unquestioning approach to the rights and wrongs of the monarchy.

There is a shift in public opinion toward the rejection of the monarchy. But it is hardly likely to be moved.

Whether Morgan is racialistic is neither here nor there. He certainly has bigoted views, but are they the same as racist views?

They are a step further up the ladder, into the ideological belief in superiority over one type of human being over another. People get the two confused.

Many people, especially in England, entertain bigoted views. But not necessarily racist views. The strange thing is the liberal press is seemingly bewildered and doesn’t want to look facts in the face.

And that is the essence of the attacks on Corbyn. For the first time in the history of the Labour Party, following the election of the new leadership, a former leader was expelled from the party.

Behind all of these matters lies a wider argument about the right of people to express a point of view.

That right isn’t guarded by a constitution, but simply in a set of laws laid down brick by brick in a pragmatic manner. Britain does need a constitution. It should be based on public debate.

The New Journal can play a part, however small. The newspaper, because it doesn’t have shareholders, can speak more freely. The liberal left press can’t hold the same effect.

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