Devil’s Advocate: What Happened to Civility?

Posted on May 09, 2024 | By John Risley | 0 Comments

A huge portion of the world’s population relies on Facebook, TikTok, X, Instagram and other social feeds for their “news”. … It is simply amazing the extent to which people are willing to accept such rubbish as factual.”

My headline was going to be more aggressive but in the interests of, well, civility, I toned it down. What am I getting at? The principle of free speech is in trouble. That’s quite a statement and I wish it weren’t true, but it is. The examples are everywhere: some are downright dangerous, others are troubling and some are a constraint on the principles of free speech.

Case in point: former U.S. President Trump’s behaviour toward those involved in the various civil and criminal proceedings he is facing. Witnesses, judges, prosecutors, their staff and family members—anyone whose point of view he deems contrary to his own interests—all are subject to a torrent of abusive social media posts and comments in the media. The truth is never a consideration in these attacks.

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