ESS Media Officer Neil Barber challenges equality of free speech in the Scotsman

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Equality clash

Published on 20/11/2012 00:00

I agree with Alan Hinnrichs (Letters, 19 November) when he says that Adrian Smith had the right to post his feelings about gay marriage on Facebook but this brings up interesting issues about the areas in which free speech is allowed to trump the right not to be offended.

There are, for example, laws which quite rightly prevent racial hatred being spread in the media yet gay people, who no more chose their sexual orientation than they do their skin colour, continue to get it in the neck often for religious reasons.

A few months ago teenager Matthew Woods was imprisoned no less for posting on 
Facebook tasteless jokes about missing children and yet 
Cardinal Keith O’Brien can with 
impunity proclaim his belief that marriage equality is a 
“grotesque subversion”.

Remember that Stonewall, for highlighting this abuse in its “Bigot of the year” award, was threatened with funding withdrawal and the Reading University Atheist Society was thrown out of the building for its pineapple Mohammed talking point.

Do we see a pattern of
inequality here ?

Neil Barber

Saughtonhall Drive

Edinburgh

View online here.

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