Freedom manifesto!

The foundation of all freedom

Freedom of speech is the cornerstone of a democratic society. It is the most important of all freedoms. It is the foundational freedom upon which every other right we enjoy - from the right to vote to the right to protest - is built. Without the freedom to think, write, publish, depict and debate as we see fit, all our political and social rights become meaningless.

Masters of our own minds

Freedom of speech makes us morally autonomous. It allows us to use our moral and mental muscles, to decide for ourselves, through discussion, debate and argument, what is a good idea and what is a bad one. It makes man the master of his own mind and fate, rather than allowing the authorities to treat us as infants by determining on our behalf what we may read, think and believe.

The midwife of enlightenment

Freedom of speech is the best guarantor of getting to the truth of a matter. Where censorship discourages debate in favour of silencing the allegedly offensive or hateful opinion, freedom of speech insists on holding people to account for their beliefs and challenging their claims in the public sphere. It is the midwife of enlightenment where censorship fuels only an unquestioning approach, and ultimately ignorance.

No censorship - ever

Freedom of speech must never be restricted. No state bans, no hate-speech legislation, no libel laws, no restrictions on the press, no mob pressure on people to conform to modern orthodoxies. For attacks on freedom of speech do not only commit the bad-enough offence of preventing someone from saying what he believes - they also reduce the rest of us to the level of children through blocking our eyes and ears, degrading our moral autonomy, stifling truth-seeking, and elevating stupidity over enlightenment.

Free speech now!

Freedom of speech makes us free. It makes us fully human, through allowing our minds to work and our views to matter. We are absolutely committed to breathing life back into this essential freedom, to fighting against all forms of censorship and intolerance, to ensuring that everyone - regardless of their viewpoint - enjoys the freedom to express themselves and to enter into the truth-determining fray of public life. We want free speech now, with no ifs, buts, erming, ahhing, restrictions, restraints or delay.

support the manifesto

2691 people have signed up!

  • Christophe Boulaert, Government official, Belgium

    Ni dieu ni maître!

  • Carl-Edward Endicott, Free-lance writer., USA

    One would hope that Free Speech Now will help to reverse the violence that has been done to essential freedoms. The argument set forth in the Manifesto is at once cogent and well expressed.

  • david chappell, pension, netherlands

    All politicians take our freedom away...

  • Frederick Ford, Indie Author Blueseed Prodigy , Canada

    You are doing a great job! Keep it up!

  • Jeanne Kelly, Retired, UK

    My faith and support for freedom of expression became even more vehement following a London demo against the Danish cartoons. One irony-free protester carried the banner, 'Down with Free Speech'

  • Adam Taylor, Proofreader, Australia

    Free speech should be exactly what it is. Any pandering to a preconceived notion of "race" is in completely contrast to a modern, secular society

  • Paul Swatman, Farmer/Solution Pastures, Australia

    I still can't believe that this petition should have become relevant in my lifetime. Freedom is so hard to win, but so easy to lose.

  • Cyril Ignatius Kendrick, Educator, United States

    Free speech is the starting point in recognizing human dignity

  • ajit yadav, doctor in private practice, India

    we must be free otherwise censorship will encroach on all our freedom

  • JOHN POWELL, Retired, United Kingdom

    If you can't say a thing, before long just thinking it will be illegal.

  • steve saaf, USA

    FREE SPEECH and FREE MINDS

  • David Frampton, Australia

    We don't know what free speech means until we lose it

  • ayy lmao

    aliens in support of free speech because you humans are silly this even needs to be said

  • Antoine Junker, engineer, France

    Free speech is a condition to democracy's survival !


Other signatories include:

Joshua Davidson-Hague , United Kingdom • Geoffrey Gold, South East Asia • Vishnu sarda, India • Leo Forfar, England • Nikhil Amarnath, India • renny crossley, United Kingdom • Paul  Wieczorek, England • Emily Waterfield, Belgium • Martin Wynne, United Kingdom • Richard  Palmer, UK • Alice Smith, United Kingdom • Arthur Disbury, England • Ellamay  Russell, UK • Marco Santucci, UK • Pablo Carpio, Ecuador • Ray Gilliam, USA • Alex Jarrett, England • Charles Macgregor, Scotland. Europe. • Michael Hazell, UK • Justin Smyth, Ireland • Simon Cooke, UK • Elly Tams, United Kingdom • wendy kellett, UK • STE Saaf, USA • Gabriel Mell, United Kingdom • Richard Cole, Australia • Alex Dale, England • Bruce Macdonald, France • Adam Conroy, Ireland • Joseph Dunsay, USA • Shira Salingre, Scotland, United Kingdom • Kim Cooling, UK • jubineau ronan, france • Peter Dewar-Finch, United Kingdom • Jorge Javier Cervera Rodriguez, Mexico • David Helton, United States • Darwin Grey, England • albert gardner, United States • Kevin Yuill, UK • Barbara Hewson, Ireland • Arik Eshet, Israel • Tom Goodfellow, UK • Daniel Schwartz, United States • H. Levy, USA • Daniel Borgmann, Germany • Joshua Wii, United States • Anthony Cook, England • Alec Bennett, United Kingdom • Maren Thom, UK • Vincent Bate, England (No, I don't mean UK) • Matt Perry, Britain • Alex Kasnetz, United States • Alex Diviney, United Kingdom • shraga shatil, Israel • Catherine Chapman, United Kingdom • Joshua Goldberg, United States • Adarsh Singh, India • Isabel Comens, UNITED KINGDOM • Anick Purmessur, UK • Jane  Paterson , AUSTRALIA • Matthew Hornby, United Kingdom • Simon  Haque, Uk • Ruben Flores, Mexico • patrick murphy, United Kingdom • Ian Taylor, England • Robert Housden, UK • Sadhavi  Sharma, Sweden • Aidan Condie, United Kingdom • Dan Gos, Canada • Shaun Forrest, U.K. • Guy Glover, United Kingdom • Catriona Pickett, Australia. • Matt Errington, United Kingdom • Obadiah Slope, ENGLAND love it or leave • Jaxon Derow, United States • Dirk de Klein, Ireland • Bev  Sykes, South Africa • Vladimir Lojen, Nehtehrlands • Dan Brown, Australia • JB Mayor, UK • Anne Fallon, UK • Jason Evans, United States • Alexander Thompson, United Kingdom • Stephen Beard, United Kingdom • Mark Iddon, UK • Egon Friedler, Uruguay • Luca Bocci, United Kingdom • Keith Botsford, UK, U.S. and Costa Rica • Matthew Pickering, Australia • rob cain, UK • Helen Morris, Australia • Tyler Fenby, USA • Kathy Peters, USA • Joe Collins, UK • Matthias Heitmann, Germany • IBSEN MARTINEZ, Venezuela • David Frampton, Australia • James Hampson, United States of America • James Johnson, UK • Jordan Heckendorf, Australia
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events

Free speech events

The First Amendment in the 21st Century: 
Reinvigorating Old Rights for New Times

Explore the crisis afflicting our core freedoms in Washington, DC, 15 October.

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latest podcast

Latest podcast

‘I think it’s good to hear hate speech’

Jonathan Rauch on why we should embrace being offended.