Saturday, 9 March 2019

Mindless Sheep

You have been warned: The Thought Police are coming

These weasels pretended they were 'postponing' the meeting, an oily, misleading formula that fooled a surprising number of people.
But the truth is that they stopped the event because they don't like my opinions. That proves they cannot be trusted with freedom of speech. They came up with one pretext for policing thought and imposing censorship this time. They are equally capable of coming up with another, whenever required.
In any case, why would I ever go back to such a place? They are absolutely not ashamed of what they did.
The union at the University of Portsmouth have 'banned' Peter Hitchens from speaking there
The union at the University of Portsmouth have 'banned' Peter Hitchens from speaking there
As is usual, my attackers went to great lengths to be offended, digging deep into dusty archives to find things I have said that they could disapprove of.
It is not a great blow to me, personally. I don't ask for or get a fee. I have been spared two long, uncomfortable train journeys and a night in a budget hotel, when I could instead have been at home.
I do these things mainly because I'm asked and because I love debate, and because I suspect that many students have far too few chances to hear views that are different from the standard-issue conformist Leftism that is their normal diet. What upsets me about this ban is that it is a general menace to freedom of speech, thought and assembly.
You may say that the antics of a few self-important zealots at Portsmouth University don't count for much. But I've met similar problems in many places.  And the students who impose these bans will all too soon be the civil servants, MPs, lawyers, police officers, journalists and above all teachers of tomorrow.
We are breeding a generation of Thought Policemen. They have been taught what to think, not how to think. Disagreement makes them frightened and angry.
Freedom of speech and thought cannot survive if they are not defended and understood by such people. I can't just now see anything that can save us from becoming a censored, unfree country, short of a revolution in our disastrous school system, where conformist teachers drill conformist students in the catechisms of the Left.
As so often, all I can offer is a warning. This is what is coming. It begins like this, and it ends with arrests of dissidents at four in the morning, conducted by people who are quite sure that what they are doing is right.

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