Free speech and the natural selection of ideas

David Thompson has an interesting post based around “Islamic Awareness Week” at Tufts.

It touches upon “offense”:

Very civil and inarguable comments can, for instance, cause “offence” to someone who is determined to be offended for political gain and determined to exploit the pretence of being hurt. Indeed, the pantomime of being conspicuously aggrieved can be a form of passive-aggressivism – a way to express hostility or dominance while hiding being the role of victim. This tactic is widely employed by the morally incontinent and by bullies of all kinds.

And the stifling effect religious censorship has upon human progress:

Progress depends on the vigorous testing of ideas and this process can involve unflattering collisions and breakage. Poor arguments and unsupportable beliefs are often damaged in free debate, sometimes beyond repair, and disrepute and embarrassment may prove difficult to avoid. That’s the nature of progress. Moves to spare the feelings and prejudices of designated victim groups inhibit that testing process and give undue immunity to those with the poorer argument, or no argument at all.

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