Tags: Freedom of Expression
Posted: Thu, 18 Aug 2016 by Benjamin Jones
The BBC and Demos have published an accidental case-study in why we should all stop using the meaningless and sinister word 'Islamophobia'.
The BBC has made much of a report from Demos warning that thousands of 'Islamophobic' tweets are sent in English every... Read More »
Posted: Mon, 09 May 2016 by Stephen Evans
Christian groups are being disingenuous and divisive in claiming unfavourable treatment over the decision to allow Allah adverts on buses, argues Stephen Evans.
Christian groups have reacted with faux dismay to news that buses around England will soon be displaying... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 04 May 2016 by Benjamin Jones
Leaks ahead of the Government's latest counter-extremism drive show that they have failed to balance freedom of speech with the impossible objective set out to legally challenge Islamist ideas in the "pre-criminal space."
The latest offensive against 'extremism'... Read More »
Posted: Tue, 05 Jan 2016 by Arif Rahman
Arif Rahman, a Bangladeshi blogger, reflects on the targeted attacks on secularist bloggers that took place in Bangladesh throughout 2015, claiming many lives, and considers the road ahead for secularism in the face of terror and state-sanctioned persecution.... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 18 Nov 2015 by Benjamin Jones
Society needs a much more vigorous defence of free speech than the one we are getting, with the 'elite' of society in academia, religion and politics offering a feeble and timorous defence, writes Benjamin Jones.
Speaking at a debate on "freedom of speech... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 21 Oct 2015 by Benjamin Jones
With too many instances of campus censorship to list, it's easy to be pessimistic about freedom of expression on campus, but there are a few promising signs of progress, led by students, writes Benjamin Jones.
I've spoken on two university campuses in the past... Read More »
Warwick Student Union have now done the right thing – but universities themselves must step up to defend free speech
Posted: Mon, 28 Sep 2015 by Benjamin Jones
After taking relentless criticism on Twitter and Facebook, Warwick Student Union has reversed its decision to block Maryam Namazie from speaking on campus. Though the right decision has been made in the end, universities themselves must step up to defend free... Read More »
Academics call for greater sensitivity about religion in universities, but students suggest it’s not an issue
Posted: Fri, 19 Jun 2015 by National Secular Society
Some academics are giving undue prominence to religion and religious students- when the evidence shows they are exaggerating the scale of the 'problem' they describe.
Tariq Modood, professor of sociology at the University of Bristol, and Professor Craig Calhoun,... Read More »
Preacher James McConnell faces prosecution for calling Islam “Satanic"- the state again tramples over free expression
Posted: Thu, 18 Jun 2015 by Benjamin Jones
Free speech for all is threatened once more by the senseless prosecution of another Christian preacher. His religious freedom is the same liberty that defends secularists, atheists, people of all religions and none.
"Islam is heathen, Islam is satanic, Islam... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 18 Jun 2015 by Benjamin Jones
A paper published by the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education has claimed that atheists can be "militant" on university campuses, while describing religion as a "public good" and the exclusion of religion from the public sphere as "repressive."
Professor... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 11 Jun 2015 by Benjamin Jones
Islamists are again using the victims of anti-Muslim bigotry to advance their agenda. Once again, a British university has aided this project in a conference on 'Islamophobia' which undermined and demonised ex-Muslims as "McCarthyites".
Many, many Muslims are... Read More »
Posted: Tue, 19 May 2015 by Alastair Lichten
Religious voting blocs and sectarian and divisive politics harm society and can undermine democracy. But are laws that potentially restrict free expression the answer? Alastair Lichten considers the charge of 'undue spiritual influence'.
Many student unions... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 14 May 2015 by Anonymous
Following the recent wave of assassinations targeting atheist and secular writers in Bangladesh, we publish the thoughts of a British secularist of Bangladeshi origin – and his message to their murderers.
Ananda Bijoy Das was killed just two days ago... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 30 Apr 2015 by Benjamin Jones
Posted: Thu, 02 Apr 2015 by Benjamin Jones
The bigoted views of Islamists and anti-Muslim demagogues must be challenged, but the term 'Islamophobia' only serves to confuse the issues and shut down debate, argues Benjamin Jones.
The NUS Women's Conference made headlines recently after the organisers... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 20 Mar 2015 by Benjamin Jones
An offensive street preacher has been charged for giving a "religiously aggravated" sermon, and was told by a police officer that he is not allowed to offend anyone. Benjamin Jones warns of the danger posed to our civil liberties if the state continues to... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 18 Feb 2015 by Sadikur Rahman
25 years after the Rushdie Affair, one month after the atrocities in Paris and days after the attack on a free speech seminar in Copenhagen, Sadikur Rahman looks at what lessons free expression activists and opponents have taken.
Another European city, this... Read More »
Posted: Mon, 16 Feb 2015 by Manfredi La Manna
Manfredi La Manna argues that the response to the Charlie Hebdo murders has exposed unpalatable truths in both the conservative and progressive camps.
The latest cack-handed intervention by the Pope, exempting religions from the list of acceptable targets for... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 by Gita Sahgal
Posted: Thu, 22 Jan 2015 by Benjamin Jones
NSS communications officer Benjamin Jones argues that the problem of Islamism is obscured by politicians and others simplistically categorising Muslims as either 'peaceful' or 'violent'.
On 12 January, BBC Panorama featured British Muslims campaigning for a... Read More »
Posted: Thu, 15 Jan 2015 by Admin
This is a translation of the editorial from the first Charlie Hebdo published since the Paris attacks. It is reproduced here in solidarity with Charlie Hebdo.
For a week now, Charlie, an atheist magazine, has accomplished more miracles than all the saints and... Read More »
Posted: Fri, 09 Jan 2015 by Sadikur Rahman
The British print and media press's response to the Charlie Hebdo attack has involved victim blaming, obfuscation and self-censorship, argues Sadikur Rahman.
If there was ever a time when the British print and media press should have shown courage and strength... Read More »
Posted: Wed, 07 Jan 2015 by Terry Sanderson
Restrictions on criticising or satirising religion, especially Islam, have hugely increased since Salman Rushdie was burned in effigy and driven into hiding over The Satanic Verses in 1988. That he was reviled and those attempting his murder not even charged... Read More »
Posted: Tue, 24 Jun 2014 by Terry Sanderson
On 21 June 2014, NSS President Terry Sanderson spoke at the Chatham Unitarian Church, about the importance of equalities protections and secularism to religious freedom. This is a transcript of his speech.
The first problem I have is with a definition of "religious... Read More »
Posted: Sat, 08 Feb 2014 by Abhishek Phandis
The media's refusal to show the Jesus & Mo cartoon emboldens professional offense takers at the expense of inoffensive satirists –and seriously undermines the principle of free expression, argues Abhishek Phadnis.
The Danish scholar Jytte Klausen's... Read More »