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Lance Witten has freedom of speech

2012-11-09 12:21
 
Here's what I think about the Lance Witten issue:

The constitution protects free expression (S16b). Government is prevented from suppressing protected speech by the law, why on earth is business allowed to make up its own rules regarding what you can or cannot say?

The law protects workers from employers. If there were grounds for a civil action (libel/defamation) or criminal action (hate speech) then by all means dismiss him, he's breaking laws; but this level of autonomy in enforcing homogeneity is unacceptable to me.

Also, isn't it deliciously ironic that a news corporation that champions and relies on freedom of expression and dissemination of information can censor someone? When their right to say what suits them is taken away there'll be an uproar. Saying "shut up or go to jail" is exactly the same as saying, "shut up or starve". It is a way to coerce people in to silence and is unwarranted censorship.

Lance Witten behaved like an idiot and I think he ought to be ashamed of himself, but I will fight for his right to say what he likes.

A news agency said that this sets a precedent for social media and the workplace. It does, and it's a bad one.

Companies can issue public disclaimers when they think their employees are out of line, but to give them a right that nobody else has (suppressing constitutionally protected speech) is absurd.

I have mentioned ad nauseum all these arguments on twitter and I've received no response. I would appreciate criticism of these ideas if they're incorrect.

Until then I will fervently support Lance Witten and hope that my perception of what is just in this situation is realised.

Disclaimer: This is an article written by a Channel24 user. The views of users published on Channel24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Channel24. Channel24 reserves the right to edit or delete any and all comments received.

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