The Right to Dissent

It would be a fair assessment to conclude that many people consider some statements not what they would like to hear — whether by Salman Rushdie, Geert Wilders, Ingrid Carlqvist, Douglas Murray, Lars Hedegaard, Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff, Theo van Gogh, the Mohammad cartoonists, Stéphane Charbonnier and other editors at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, among others. To say their remarks are sometimes regarded as controversial would be an understatement. Often, they are vociferous and vocal critics of extremist Islam, immigration, censorship and other policies — and they have been accused of Islamophobia, hate speech, and inflaming racial and religious tensions. Several have been threatened with jail and death. Some have been murdered for their warnings.

Importantly, though, none of them has ever directly incited violence against a religion, ethnic minority, or sexual orientation.

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