Why the Jordan Peterson / Cathy Newman interview could be a turning point for free speech

One of the biggest problems with public discourse in the West today is that the articulation of speech that deviates from the Leftist norms of political correctness is met with systematic abuse – “racism”, “bigotry”, “fascism”, “prejudice”, “misogyny” “alt-right” or “right-wing” or – heaven forfend! –  even “Islamophobia”.

Part of the problem is that we have by and large lost the educational techniques of debating difficult subjects in public – the process of free, uncensored debate is no longer encouraged in our schools and universities, and most people find that by the time they have developed an interest in, say, politics, philosophy and economics for example, and wish to take up a position that would have been considered “moderate” only fifty years ago, they are smeared with one or more of the epithets listed above and threatened with social ostracism,  the loss of their employment, or even the loss of their liberty under increasingly arbitrary “hate speech” laws. This naturally discourages reasoned debate and critical analysis, an outcome which is to the detriment of us all, especially given the immense challenges facing our democratic Western civilisation today.

A remarkable interview between Professor Jordan Peterson and Cathy Newman of Channel 4 Television took place recently. It was viewed over two million times on YouTube and the general consensus was that the social justice warrior Cathy Newman had her ass handed to her by the learned Professor Peterson. (She was reportedly rather upset by this.) The most delicious “gotcha” moment is at 23m 05s, however an in-depth analysis of the implications of the interview reveals an unexpected dimension.

This video of Paul Weston on Robert Spencer’s Jihad Watch website explains it very well. It is well worth 45 minutes of your time to watch both the video and the original interview, and for you then to encourage everyone you know who cares about free speech to watch the video and the interview too.

Tim Burton