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Dr Muriel Newman

Free Speech Under Threat

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Earlier this year, Dr Bruce Moon, a retired physicist and avid historian, was invited by the Nelson Institute to give a talk at his local library. The topic he chose for his April 8th address was New Zealand’s ‘fake history’ as it relates to Treaty of Waitangi issues. 

Four days before the event, Bruce was informed by the organiser that the talk had been called off. He was told: “At the Library today NCC, Library officials, and two of us from the Nelson Institute met to discuss your planned talk.  All 3 of these groups had been contacted by persons saying you should not be allowed to talk on this topic, in the Library.  Both the NCC and the Library felt a talk could disturb the peace and become a Health and Safety issue.”

Bruce contacted the Nelson City Council Mayor for an explanation for this “brutal censorship”. The Council’s Chief Executive replied on her behalf: “Earlier in April, Library staff were made aware of the event which you were scheduled to speak at, which was potentially controversial in its content. As the venue was subsidised by Council, staff recommended that the Institute seek an alternative viewpoint to help balance the discussion. The Institute was unable to source such a speaker at short notice, so it was agreed that the event would be cancelled. Safety issues were also raised at the time and I do question whether a room at the back of the library is an appropriate venue for a debate of this type that could be emotionally charged. Nelson City Council does not look to restrict freedom of speech, however, staff do consider that there should be an opportunity for a balanced debate especially on potentially controversial topics and especially when using council facilities.”

The Council’s Communications Manager also tried to claim that the Council does not censor free speech, saying “The Council does not restrict the freedom of speech. It does however value the health and safety of its staff, and actively works to ensure the workplace is safe.”

Let’s make no mistake about this – the Council did and does restrict the right of free speech. There are two significant errors in the Council’s position. The first is their censorship under the guise of ‘health and safety’ concerns based on nothing more than anonymous ‘threats’ made over what Dr Moon might say.

The second is that the Council unilaterally decided the scheduled talk would be so ‘controversial’ and ‘unbalanced’, that they demanded the organisers find another speaker to ‘balance’ the ‘debate’. This is in spite of section 21 of the Human Rights Act making it unlawful to discriminate against someone on the grounds of their political opinion.

In fact, it’s plainly absurd for the Council to require those who hire its venues to present opposing views. Does that mean they will only hire a venue to the Prime Minister if the organisers agree to invite the Leader of the Opposition along to provide an alternative view? Or would someone promoting the benefits of a zero-carbon future be required to provide a speaker to explain that there is no evidence that man-made global warming exists? Clearly not. The proposition is preposterous, and so too is the position taken by Nelson’s Mayor and CEO.

Further, when the Nelson City Council kow-tows to the threats of a vocal minority, it is not only restricting free speech but it is also failing to enforce the law.

Threatening to harm people or property is an offence under section 307A of the Crimes Act. The penalty is up to 7 years in prison, if the threat causes “significant disruption of the activities of the civilian population” and creates a risk to public health.

On-line threats are also against the law, with perpetrators facing up to two years in prison or a fine of up to $50,000, under section 22 of the Harmful Digital Communications Act.

While protest action is lawful, since that too represents free expression, it is not lawful if the protestors are threatening harm.

What should have happened in Bruce Moon’s case is that the Council should have reported the threats of violence to the Police, and the talk should have gone ahead as planned. Under such circumstances, it is likely that the Police would have maintained a presence at the event and the courage of the anonymous bullies would melted away to nothing – assuming they even turned up to the event at all.

Instead, the Council allowed faceless and nameless ‘people’ issuing illegal threats to deny a person’s right to free speech.

Fortunately the organisers of Bruce’s speech did not give up, despite the many closed doors that greeted them. A number of groups were approached – including the polytechnic, church groups, and the Masons – but once they heard the topic of the presentation, they refused access, no doubt scared off by the Council’s stance and concerned that hosting the talk, might label them as racists!

In the end, the Nelson Hearing Association provided a venue, and the talk went ahead on July 7th to a packed hall. There were no protests. No one’s health or safety was threatened. There was not a single dissenting voice!

There is a certain irony in the fact that a hall dedicated to the hearing impaired allowed the talk to go ahead, while a library – the institution that throughout history has been at the forefront of defending free expression in a written form – muzzled free speech.

Bruce’s talk, A Jaundiced View of History, which was deemed so controversial that he was banned from many Nelson venues, is this week’s NZCPR Guest Commentary:

“Thank you for your introduction, Mr Chairman and for all your hard work to ensure that I could be heard. I am a New Zealander, all of whose pioneer forebears arrived in the South Island before 1880, seeking to live in a country where one’s position in life was not determined by the happenstance of ancestry.

“My thesis is that New Zealand today is awash with fake history issuing from those seeking political advantage, material gain or personal satisfaction. Values dear to me and once, I used to think, to all New Zealanders,  are truth, fairness and democracy which are under threat today – but I don’t ask you to believe me.  I ask you to believe the hard historical evidence.”

Bruce’s experience reminds us that the freedom of expression, a fundamental cornerstone of our democracy, is now under threat in New Zealand as never before. Why? Because people like Nelson’s  Mayor and CEO allow it to be. Clearly they are so spineless that they would rather undermine the fundamental right of free speech than upset their local radicals who through intimidation are forcing their will onto the community. The Mayor should be ashamed of herself.

While we like to think we live in a tolerant society with a ‘live and let live’ tradition, reality suggests otherwise. It seems those extremists who use attack politics to impose their radical views onto others are succeeding.

We can see this not only in Bruce Moon’s case, but also in the high profile silencing of two Canadian speakers, who were due to address an audience in Auckland early next month.

Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux are described as “world leading commentators and justice activists” by Axiomatic Media, the organiser of speaking events that are taking place in Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, Sydney, and Brisbane. A New Zealand event, to be held at the Auckland City Council’s Bruce Mason Theatre on August 3rd, had been added onto the end of the tour.

However, threats of violence made against the speakers and anyone who turned up to hear them, ensured the event was cancelled.

It turns out that their visit was opposed from the beginning. The New Zealand Federation of Islam Associations president Hazim Arafeh had written to the Immigration Minister, the Minister for Ethnic Communities, and the Human Rights Commission asking for one of the speakers, Lauren Southern, to be denied entry into New Zealand. An on-line petition to that effect was also launched.

Their opposition to the speakers was supported by Auckland Peace Action, a radical activist group that purports to oppose aggression and war. Their spokesman, Valerie Morse, said the organisation would “stand in solidarity with the Muslim community in Aotearoa who are opposing these fascists. If they come here, we will confront them on the streets. If they come, we will blockade entry to their speaking venue. We are preparing to take action to stop their public event if the Minister fails to do so. We encourage people across Auckland to join us and say NO to hate.”

Valerie Morse is no stranger to violence and extremism having been arrested in 2007, not only on firearms charges – including possession of a military-style semi-automatic rifle and Molotov cocktails – during police raids on a military style training camp in the Urewera Mountains, but also for burning the New Zealand flag at an Anzac Day parade.

As in Bruce Moon’s case in Nelson, it was the threat of violence and protest that led to the presentations by  Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux being called off.

Auckland Live, the organisation that runs events at council facilities, said it was security concerns around “the health and safety of the presenters, staff and patrons” that led to the event’s cancellation.

With only four weeks to go until the scheduled event, the promoter said there was not enough time to find another Auckland venue, and so the event was cancelled. 

Meanwhile, Auckland Live, as a courtesy, informed the mayor’s office that the booking had been cancelled. As a result, Mayor Phil Goff decided to get in on the action by issuing a tweet: “Auckland Council venues shouldn’t be used to stir up ethnic or religious tensions. Views that divide rather than unite are repugnant and I have made my views on this very clear. Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux will not be speaking at any Council venues.”

Phil Goff appears to have forgotten that under section 14 of the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act, “Everyone has the right to freedom of expression, including the freedom to seek, receive and impart information and opinions of any kind and in any form”.

Fortunately individuals who do believe in free speech, have taken a stand against the Council’s ban, forming a Free Speech Coalition and raising sufficient funds to mount a judicial review of the event’s cancellation. We will await the outcome with interest.

British writer Salman Rushdie, knows more about the importance of free speech than most, having had a fatwa issued against him by Muslim fanatics in 1989 following the publication of his book The Satanic Verses. He believes, “There is no right in the world not to be offended. That right simply doesn’t exist. In a free society, an open society, people have strong opinions, and these opinions very often clash. In a democracy, we have to learn to deal with this.”

He’s right. Free speech is a pillar upon which a free society is built. It enables the contest ideas that underpins democracy itself.

Those people in charge of the council venues, who lacked the courage to protect the rights to free speech of Bruce Moon, Lauren Southern and Stefan Molyneux should be reminded that those speakers have a right to be heard, whether we like what they have to say or not.

Even Phil Goff has a right to be heard. However he does not have a right to dictate what others should or should not hear. And nor should those who threaten the “health and safety” of public events be allowed to dictate who should be heard. 

It’s time the laws safeguarding free speech were properly applied. Illegal threats to close down meetings and debate, should be referred to the Police. There should be no more cancelling of events – free speech in New Zealand should be protected according to the law.


Do you feel that your right to free speech is under threat in New Zealand today?


*Poll comments are posted below.


*All NZCPR poll results can be seen in the Archive.


Click to view x 120


Yes, there is no such thing as freedom if speech in NZ anymore, the press appear to ignore any real issues for fear of censure, no we just cannot speak our mind, it’s a nanny state of course where we need saving from ourselves. Audrey
Absolutely!! Advocates of free speech are being shackled by the ‘Lefties’. Tony
Political Correctness stifles open debate. Allied to this is a lack of knowledge about the world and about history – hence there is no wider perspective, no understanding of the larger movements of history and mankind. One syndrome that harms those who espouse it is the race to be the greatest victim. This locks people into a negative perception of their opportunities. From there they are vulnerable to a downward spiral of choices. Jennifer
Absolutely and it’s only getting worse with that new joke of a PM that we have. Janie
Once again we have a minority dictating as to what THEY accept as RIGHT or WRONG and thus others views are exterminated regardless without any consideration Time this outdated Treaty excuse was dead and buried like many of our own present day important views seem to of been without any consideration marylin
the jaundiced view of history only covers the more recent period. The earlier period of discovery and settlement (including the position of Australia and NZ on ancient Greek maps) is also ignored and denied despite supporting evidence by Ngapuhi elder David Rankini who said details of much of the country’s past were being concealed by academic historians. Robert
Proclamation of of an opinion alongside the total prohibition of opposition is DICTATORSHIP. ALAN
It certainly is, especially for older, white, heterosexual males. Steve
Absolutely. Some of the specious reasons for cancellations and / or objections are risible. Mabel
We dare not criticize the stupid little girl who masquerades as the PM because she was pregnant before and when she returns we won’t be able to call her the Communist she is because of her toothy grin and political correctness. Same applies to contra issues of Muslim, Maori, AGW, transgender people, homosexuals-2 males on TV1, Sunday night having a surrogate baby girl-yuk. Monica
Things are out of hand now & getting worse with this current regime…. Simon
We are sliding into fascism and worse. Robert
Thanks for the most enlightening newsletter. You’re right. The laws we have indeed need to be applied. Colin
Definately John
The library case reminds me of a similar incident in Canada. Currently the justice centre for Constitutional freedoms has filed a court application against the Ottawa Public library to challenge the decision to cancel a private viewing of a documentary about the migrant crisis in Europe. It states a public library cannot cancel a film screening because it does not support the views expressed. And it violates the library’s own Intellectual freedom policy. A quick google will give you more information if you are interested. Tina
Very much so!! NZ is going the same way as the alt-left in America. We have become so polarized that their is no longer any compromise between the left and the right. Conservatives are usually fair minded about free speech while liberals and the extreme left activists are quite prepared to threaten, even break the law, to further their agenda. There’s no longer any compromise. A great pity NZ has gone down this path. Rejecting our Christian heritage, morality and values and placidly accepting this left-wing political activism – to keep the peace and lose their freedom of speech. Sad. Bruce
Dr. Newman’s article sets out clearly the recent events giving rise to this concern over ‘free speech’. Thank you. It is one further step in the onslaught of racism and the growing divide that sadly pervades our country. The gimme attitude is encouraged as each time concessions are given to Maoris they treat it as a victory and are encouraged to demand more. Much of this occurs under the radar but is highlighted when it comes to public attention as this has done. Chris
The left with a totalitarian agenda should take off to Russia and spend their time admiring Putin. Wayne
It is an insult to our democratic rights to deny free speech. Ian
Ignorant leftists are pulling our country down. Any attack on free speech is an attack on democracy. Supression of free speech leads to violence and disharmony. . Trevor Phillips says free speech must be encouraged. Bruces
It is a shame that regular New Zealanders dont have an opportunity to express their opinions to a bigger audience – most comments to national papers that are not agreed to are not printed and its as though you have to become a radical, or break the law, to get your word heard. I would like a national soapbox to promote the riddance of political parties – the bane of New Zealand’s democracy..anyone got any ideas. Russell
Sadly this is absolutely true. It seems that no-one can speak the truth any more. If it anyone dares to speak out especially about the racial divisions that are growing at an alarming rate, one is called a racist. The true racists are the ones who are reinventing history and insisting that things go down the divisive racial path. I long for the day when we don’t need the racial divisions and can all be treated the same. I often wonder if I will ever live to see this happen. Helen
Excellent article Muriel. Thank you to the free speech group for standing up for our right to speech freely on topics that not everyone agrees with. How can we teach our children to THINK if we cannot debate. Thank you also to Dr Bruce Moon, Dr Brash and many others who are quietly (I hope) saving us from ourselves. Lauren Southern is an amazing young women, confident and extremely brave. Sam
Thank God for the internet! Without it we would be very limited by the news we get. Petty politico like Goff are so eager to virtue signal, they would still be doing so while being led to the gas chambers. It is appropriate to question everything- including multiculturalism, for after over 70 years of observation I can confidently state it does not work. There are far too many people’s opinions I cannot bare to listen to and as such I have the right to spurn them. It is a pity that low IQ extremists are too ignorant and intolerant to do the same. Charles
Whatever happened to the concept of disagreeing with someone’s views but defending to the hilt their right to voice it? It now seems that Phil Goff is as out of control as the rest of the Auckland Council and Auckland Transport. Gary
Minorities rule this country. and I can see no end to this.If we go against them it is called Racism. If they go against us it is not called racism??????? Barbra
It certainly is based on the recent trends, and the PC bias that we see nowadays. Andrew
Under threat??? you bet it is, as with common sense, honesty, loyalty, responsibility and integrity who all died when they took the discipline out of schools, and at the same time we got TV, it’s been down hill ever since. Athol
The opposition to any type free speech has been the norm for years Barry
Goff’d actions should be comdemned by all Kiwis. This is what happens in countries under communist and/or dictators.. Kevin
This is caused through spineless politicians Dave
Definitely, along with equal rights! Brian
Getting worse David
This may only be the beginning, but at least we can change things at the next election and free ourselves from the vice like grip of the paranoid left. Paul
Young spoilt kids are being catered to by inexcusable elders like Goff Alister
For sure. Our Socialist, Liberal and the PC crowd all want restrictions on free speech as so much restricted speech points out how the unbalanced expression of blocked ‘free speech’ can create widespread confusion. There is a movement at foot wanting young children not to define between ‘male’ or female.’ The potential confusion generated with a person not ‘allowed’ to describe them self as either male or female can only but add to inner turmoil with sometimes (or more often) disastrous results. Stuart
The idiots that are against free speech do not need to turn up you will find these people have there own agenda Peter
Absolutely Brian
Defend the first amendment. Jo
For all the reasons you have outlined Mel
Not only is free speech is under threat, but the whole of Western Values and its very civilisation. History tells us quite clearly that Civilisations collapse more from internal sources than from external The constant down grading that occurs with neo Marxist ideology undermines the very foundations of democracy Itself, and therefore establishes a permanent Dictatorship due entirely to the apathy of the public.  Brian
It occurs to me that one only has the right to free speech in New Zealand today if the views expressed are totally PC.. It would appear that Bruce Moon, Israel Folau , Bob Jones, Don Brash, the disallowed Canadians, and anyone else who dares to hold a view contrary to that of the PC brigade John
What’s this country coming too !!! Mark
Yet another symptom of a failing media which should be advocating free speech but is unfairly reporting its benefits Nev
I will continue to say whatever I want to say and no one will stop me. Voters are going to have to be more choosy who they vote for. NZ history is well and truly fake. Charley
If you don’t agree with the Topic of the Speech don’t attend the venue but let others have the right to make up their own minds on the Topic Laurel
Most certainly it is ! Recent incidents around NZ have indicated very real interference in preventing lecturers from speaking out on various subjects considered “out of order” or innapropiate.Some Mayors are quite arrogant in using their authority to cancel such meetings. William
Time for Goff to go, the stench arrogance is rife. Minority Islam groups petitioning to have meetings stopped. They need to go. Trump is on the right track. Neil
We no longer have the right to free speech, only the requirement to agree with the aggressive, threatening, vocal minority. David
I would like to be the one who chooses who I listen to not the Councils of this country who do they think they are dictating to us Rate/Tax payers we pay their wages Barbara
Has been for years and is getting worse, the people who try are slowly being hounded by all the halfcaste brown nosing media and parasites that are in the beehive who are scared of losing all their perks. Richard
No question! Fiona
It getting worse by the week. Martin
Yes Yes and Yes Carolyn
More than just freedom of speech – our freedoms were being eroded in the name of “safety” for a number of years now. Called it a decade ago and it’s only going to get worse. Pavel
Goff is a dolt. We are being bled fry the so-called indigenous people. I was born in NZ of 4 gens, occurred naturally, in a given place, NZ, and am therefore indigenous, but mot recognised. Denis
It is hard to say anything withot incurring someones wrath. Leigh
Absolutely so.! In so many ways from so many quarters. David
The media refuse to publish the truth on many issues Ken
councils are now the tip of the spear when it comes to cen govt pushing through Agenda 21. 2030, councils have become activists as Dr Newman said…in Auckland Agenda 21, 2030 is all over the place..closed bush walks, apple moth spraying, battery hen living beside railway line and bus routes, cycle/walkways, new house land shortage close to the city by design…taxes, non productive wasteful spending, cost of living drive people out, immigration increased promoting multiculturalism, crazy laws, fearless Phil trying to halt free speech, in the end fascism….Mussolini a classic!!! didn’t end well for him… Wayne
Every day we see and hear of the damping down or elimination totally of anything that may be against the status quo and continuing left wing ideologies. (ie our labour govt and it’s cohorts) Alan
Free speech is becoming a dangerous commodity in today’s intolerant, politically correct and downright unbalanced society. Be prepared to “duck” if you have the temerity to express a criticism or reservation, no matter how mild or reasoned, about such subjects as vaccination, racial issues, fluoridation, political distortion of historic events and the like. Such behaviour has now become very risky, as the “politically correct” looneys and internet trolls are waiting to savage anybody who ventures an opinion that differs from their version of reality. Unfortunately, our P.C. and brainwashed media is doing very little to promote free and open debate on controversial issues. Thank goodness for the efforts of NZCPR in maintaining an open discussion forum for citizens who are alarmed at what is happening to our society and the freedoms we once took for granted.. Les
Without doubt New Zealanders are losing the rights that those near and dear to me fought for all those years ago. From my family: Uncle Dick – killed Uncle Ken – killed Father-in-law – badly injured at Tripoli Another Uncle Dick – 3 years in Africa -Italy Dad – 82 operations in Bomber Command – one of two survivors of his training intake of 50 I am absolutely disgusted with those who consider themselves the arbiters of what we may speak about or listen to. Perhaps the Nelson bunch should be sued as Full(of himself) Goff is in Auckland. Dave
Unfortunately there is a minority of certain people that can only dominate any debate on local history by being a Bully and claiming that their History is correct and the only type that can sustain. Geoff
Goodness – when will New Zealanders wake up and accept that we cannot have viewpoint diversity in this country. It is upsetting to those hard working community leaders striving to establish Bolshevisk revisionism within their provinces. We are so fortunate to have past and present leaders who have been properly educated in progressive youth socialist movements to ensure this happens. And what could happen if we don’t shut up and let these people do our thinking for us? You’re right! There will be open debates on issues such as vaccines, fluoride, Islamic fundamentalism, You-Tube censorship, MMP, Polynesian history, et al. But must go – have to iron my black shirt for tonight’s march. Peter
Besides these 2 recent events of blocking controversial speeches at public facilities, NZ media is slowly preventing public voice on NZ history by portraying their own false information as they see fit. Thankfully, there are many online platforms like the New Zealand Centre for Political Research (NZCPR) where differing opinions on topics can be represented. I am not an internet, social media junkie but lately I find myself turning away from newspapers to online sites where information / opinions are not easily curbed by distorted Editors or Big Brother%u201D. Martin
Again the Closet Marxists in the Green Party and various splinter groups posing as friends but hate our western civilisation grab the microphone and weak and cowardly politicians allow themselves to be manipulated who support them by staying mute. Whats wrong with the upcoming generation – where are their leaders to challenge these simplistic liers? Rex
Undoubtedly. Barbara
I remain as outspoken as I ever was and anyone is free to take an opposing view for any reason, therefore I do not feel at all threatened. Peter
Learn to face any fear… only way to disempower rand sanitize ignorance. Peter
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I’ll defend to the death your right to say it. https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/evelyn_beatrice_hall Huria
This is happening in a thousand little ways every day of the week particularly with respect to the meto brigade Bruce
Socialist agendas can only be successful with no opposition or challenge. Why?, because the whole concept of every-one being equal, ignoring race or gender, is a fallacy. Socialism can only prosper when the entire population is dumbed-down to the lowest denominator. We have got to the stage now where laws are in place to include the actions of the lowest denominator. Any one who dares to challenge the indoctrinated majority view, is to be quickly shut down. The NZCPR is one of the few platforms left that encourages free speech & opinion. Thank-you so much for the work that you do.. A.G.R.
Creeping intolerance by the Left who used to be the champions of free speech. Neil
Absolutely – the cases you relay are clear proof of it. Post quake in Christchurch a local history professor wanted all the statues that fell over in the quakes to be destroyed or removed to a place where few would visit. Apparently they were all bad men! These men lived well over 100 years ago and here we have a history professor of all people passing judgement out of the context of the times they lived. That she does not appear to know better would suggest that she should be sacked from her well paid taxpayer funded job. David
Racist anti Kiwi propaganda and PC rules are undermining the whole New zealand way of life. Terry
Every part of our society is banning free speech, Facebook is one of the worst. George
It is the cornerstone of our society and should be fearlessly protected. Those “radicals” amongst us should learn tolerance towards others as they so indignantly demand of others. Perhaps illegal threats by those concerned should ALL be referred to the police for action. Chris
People who oppose free speech do not have to go to meetings of free speech John
we have now got what we deserve Its time to wake up NZ there is little time to correct It is now time for action if we don’t sort out these out these parasites its all over Bill
It seems radicals can say anything but if we give an opinion they don’t like we’re either racist or hate speech givers or they’ll call us something else. Cindy
Creeping PC is being used for political, financial and personal gain across NZ. It is time to stand up to this insidious threat to our way of life. Michael
Not that I have any interest in listening to another Molyneux rant for an hour or so! Boring as. Have made myself sit through a couple on line, enough already! Hugh
I HAVE WRITTEN SEVERAL ESSAYS RECENTLY [one on the disgusting naked racism of Iwi “gifting a maori name to the PM’s new baby an act of brown supremacy bloated egotism unmatched previously. Another on the M.Fox recipe to take over the country by maoridom. Both times I have fielded considerable bully hate mail attempting to shut me up, well I’m unrepentant, and plan to carry on.  Bud
We hae the right to heard others views whether we agree or disagree. Bev
Yes, more so than ever, it actually frightens me how the minority have gained so much power and nearly everyone kow tows to them. Fraser
Rthe basic and fundamental ‘rights’ are being eroded and Thank you for putting this in the public arena for people to read and realize what is occurring outside ones own sphere of influence of area of comfort and ease John B
Definitely. I cannot even get a letter to the editor published in the Herald. Peter
Has been under threat for some years now. Mark
I live in Nelson. I am not surprised that our Mayor has yet again demonstrated her inability to understand the simple notion that others may have opinions differing to hers. She is just another left wing fascist. Rodney
I’m ashamed of the demonisation of free speech in NZ Peter
The main stream media is the worst culprit in cutting out free speech by refusing to take a neutral position, or even comment on, controversial topics such as the falsity of anthropogenic climate warming. Ron
Here in New Zealand free speech on certain topics has been under threat for years. Robert
Very definitely Barbara
Unfortunately there is a rising emphasis being given to a very minor number of objectors in relation to too many things now in NZ. Make noise by a handful and you can catch all the attention. No emphasis is taken into account regarding the very vast majority that do not protest as they agree and do not make a noise. Peter
Any comment made or discriminates Maori or Islamic religion seems to draw a tirade of backlash. The same cannot be said when the reverse happen against the European population. Reverse racism. Wayne
As soon as you mention Maori in a negative way you are accused of Racism especially in relationship to Bastion Point. Ian
Absolutely! What is most disturbing is how councils and those in positions of power are dictating what we can hear, should think with no discussion . We cannot let this situation develop to the stage we have lost our ability to express ourselves whatever our opinions. It is time for people to stand up to would be dictators and thought police. Gail
Hasn’t changed just the attitude and P C. IAN
Yes indeed! I have been following political developments in Germany and the EU in general for quite some time now and the situation we are confronting here in NZ.. in regards to free speech and our democracy being undermined constantly by a radical left wing oriented minority( meshed into an unholy alliance with FIANZ– Maori radicals and the NZ Antifa) does indeed show disturbing parallels to the current situation in Germany. In short — a wholesale destruction of democratic values and a massive attempt to destroy national identity and culture. Multi culturalism means nothing but utter fragmentation of society to the point where any resistance is stamped out. To achieve this final goal the destruction of free speech is one of the most important weapons in the arsenal of the political correct (anti???) fascists. The second important weapon: they take and apply violent verbal tactics to subdue any criticism followed by threatening physical action( or shall we say violence) . We are at great danger here in NZ because the established parties are either condoning these developments ( like the Greens) or simply stand by saying and doing nothing to stop this evil in its tracks. Apart from some feeble utterances we obviously cannot expect anything more substantial from the National Party ( forget about Labour). Scary!!! Michael
The slow indoctrination through our learning institutions is subtly reprogramming our youth to behave in such a manner that they become easily controlled. We must promote critical thinking and voice. The answer to speaking about difficult subjects is to speak about them more not less. Peter
On subjects such as climate change and the treaty of waitangi, the rights are already lost. John
For some time now the majority of New Zealanders have been held to ransom by invented history that denies their sovereign rights. There should be no second class citizens in this county. One Law, One People. sovereign Dave
Radicals don’t like free speech – unless they’re doing it! Graham
The attack on free speech had its genesis in Labour pandering to the Maori vote by setting up the Waitangi Tribunal in the 1970’s and creating a view of history which should not be challenged, other minorities jumped on the band wagon. irvine
Goff has no right to dictate who speaks in our public venues – also the people need to be asked if we want a maori statue to symbolise us – what about the Silver Fern! Judy
Absolutely!! This has been happening for a very long time now and we need to ensure it stops. The problem is our ‘she’ll be right’ attitude…. Maddi
Marxism, Facism, Communism are all rife at both local and central government levels but most obvious is the narcosis, among the democratically elected power heads whose reason to be is career focussed only. We seriously need a revolt! David
Absolutely! Sheena
The hysterical left are determined to suppress any viewpoints that don’t align with theirs. Dangerous! Lee
Under threat from the PC brigade. If you are non white, non christian – you have all the rights. Sarah
The deciders of free speech are all tarred with the same brush prevent free speech, lets have a war. Warren
What right does any one person have to control what another person says or listens to? None whatsoever. What right does any mayor have to say what a coincil building be used for – none because the buildings belong to the city – not the mayor. People in such positions need to pull their heads in. They appear to be control freaks. Kevin
Our freedoms are slowly being eroded through fear mongering and false accusations. We must all resist before it is too late. Robert
With people liker Phil Goff in Auckland and the Nelson mayor and other PC people in high up positions in local councils around the country heaven help you if you say something that might upset some super sensitive person. They should think about what Voltaire centuries ago ” I do not agree with what you say but I will defend to the death for your right to say it.” Colin
It happened in Canada it happened during 2016 Presidential election in USA and it is now happening here. It is common in the UN and in the UK as well as the Euro Union. Ray
Another radical rant Gareth
Absolutely under threat when we have failed politicians telling us who can and cannot use our public services, these clowns have to learn they work for us, they have no right to decide who and what we want to listen to. Stevoc
Blocking free speech, special privileges & rights for just a tiny % of our population – its all bad,bad, bad – shades of Adolf Hitler! Donald
At every turn in NZ we now face gutless foe who are unable to hear differing opinions. This is mainly Muslim inspired, and insidious creeping malaise that should be stopped in its tracks. Murray
I have written to many News Papers and Councils, expressing my views. Bur they will not publish them or comment on why not. I am not a Racist, but consider that many things being done are wrong. Roger
Free speech is under threat because PC has gone mad in Nz,unlikely to be corrected by our gutless politicians who simply dance to the crap of the activists,bureaucrats and maoris.Of course the politicians will argue otherwise just as they would argue there is no racism problems-yeah right Don
Perhaps the most effective way to approach the problem is by way of legal action against the mayors who act in this manner. In this way their stupidity, timidity or straight political bias can be challenged and shown for all to see. The only downside is the cost to those who support free speech and the fact that the ratepayers will be paying the mayors%u2019 legal costs. John
If you are on Facebook have a look at the vitriol that results from any comment that does not fit the “left’s” ideals. No wonder some many are abandoning that forum. Ian
The Racists of all creeds are winning because of our insipid weak politicians and those with their heads in the sand Brianb
Damn right it is. How come it’s okay for people of colour and the LBGTalphabetsoupgiraffe mob to be proud and march accordingly but not for white heterosexuals? Kerry
Too much fake news surrounding Maoridom Kevin
This threat to our democracy must be stopped in it’s tracks. Chris
No doubt David
Phil Goff’s true colours are showing, now he is firmly in the seat of Mayor, and it is unlikely anyone is brave enough to take him to task for his outlandish and racist remarks. He is racist because he does not represent the true values of the average New Zealander.Free speech is definitely off as far as Goff is concerned. Lloyd
Bunch of hypocrites. Malcolme
The Maori’s can say what they like whether it is the truth or not but any other person is called racialist why What happened years ago happened get over it and move forward but no They want monley money for what not to help their people but themselves Cherryl
This article makes me ashamed to be from Nelson. Very poor decision from our mayor & chief clown Rick
Of course it is, unless you are spouting the mantras acceptable to the minority pressure groups – both political and ethnic – that now govern NZ. “I do not support what you say, but I support your right to say it”. should now become I support what you say because I agree with it! Oh Brave New World! Andrew
The evidence is all around us Barry
There is a definite move from the Left stifle it as far as possible, especially over criticizing anything that challenges Maori & the Maorization of NZ! Frank
But not if I can help it. If you can find a copy of Old New Zealand written by Manning in the mid 1880’s it will give you an excellent insight to actuality of the times.A brilliant read. I have a treasured copy. Dick
Being right of centre seems to mean you are labelled as a facist, for daring to express such views. Allan
An example of the growth of intellectual Marxism! Willy
This is leftwing BS – the fact is that the police should be called to any disturbance regardless of how/why it is caused – If it were me I would sue the various library people for be breaking the human rights laws. Rob
Right to be heard is our right Tungane
If the truth hurts, it’s too bad Brian
A minority are trying to thrust their views on the majority Colin
Local Councils are a bunch of power mad low-life cronies all about total control of the communities they are setup to help…..TREASON is a kind description!! Chris
Free speech is available to whoever sticks with whatever agrees with “popular” views. It is going the same way as respect and tolerance towards those who peacefully hold views some totally disagree with. Anne
It will probably become more so under Comrade Ardern & Greens. Peter
In particular with this labor/ communist govt Roy
Without a doubt David
Left wing Socialists don’t like anyone to challenge the truth Greg
Most definitely and it is concerning as to how entrenched this lack has become. Especially in our institutions. David
Has been for years. Since they made laws to stop you speaking out about things Jan
The whole concept of free speech is threatened just look at the NZ Herald and Stuff as two examples , they have been totally taken over by the part Maoris and the gay brigade . As proof look at how many articles on things Maori appear daily in our news . Try saying anything against some of the rubbish that appears and you will be censored out so that your opposing or questioning point of view is not heard . Look at the exposure the gay wedding cake got , it is still going on . Ask yourself why this trivial issue warranted so much attention . Jock
If the topic of speech is in any way connected to the Treaty of Waitangi, Maoridom or some of the more radical religions in the country free speech is definitely under threat. In the name of political correctness speakers must not, under any circumstances, offend the minority ethinic groups, movements or religions. Tony
IN so an ways. WE are now a society riven by political agenda, Greed, and Look good feel god mentality. Truth, and communal interest our out the back door in the Communist state of New Zealand. Tony
Definitely!! Ian
and the muzzled media are the worst offenders Collin
Absolutely it is! Anon
Please keep up the great work Richard
I would be afraid to get up and express my opinion on the political agenda of Maori in NZ. Andrew
very much so John
The danger comes from the far left and Islam who think they are the only ones with the right to an opinion. Mark
Free speech is a very basic right. Losing that right would be the beginning of the end of all other rights and freedoms and the beginnings of despotism. Allan
Along with other basic rights. We are stifled by excessive taxes and regulation. Larry
Of course it is. Could get violent, too. As in, anybody that stands up in public and says anything that the “maori mafia” don’t want to hear, will get spanked. Unfortunately, the NZ establishment seem willing to pander to them. Or, are they just scared of ’em?. Nasty… John
Absolutely – the PC trolls are out there all the time now, ready to attack whenever anyone speaks the truth. Pete
I have never known such a lack of free speech as we have today. No-one can say what they think anymore for fear of being attacked. And the kids are growing up in a world dominated by radical people with dangerous views. Bert
There is no free speech anymore. We need a Donald Trump to drain the swamp and stamp out political correctness! Jason
I have stopped using facebook as it is just too stressful – you speak your mind and then the activists start attacking because you don’t agree with their world view. it’s no longer worth speaking out. That’s why I love your newsletters, Muriel – all power to you! Suzy
There is no free speech now in this country. The left wing are dominating the media and now the internet. it is all extremely worrying as their indoctrination is everywhere. Michael