If you were lining up people in order of political correctness, Stephen Fry wouldn’t be at the front of the queue. But, his latest blasphemy fiasco raises an interesting question.
Australia is a secular country – yet feminism has become our new religion. Who dare speak up?
Question the ideology and you run the risk of being as ostracised as Fry.
Talking about the rise and rise of University campus fragility, Fry has said, “Life is complicated and nobody wants to believe it. I suppose you might call it the infantilism of society. There is deep infantilism in the culture, in terms of the way they think, they can’t bear complexity.”
In January, Spiked, the online magazine launched its annual Free Speech University rankings. The results claimed that 90 per cent of universities censor speech. Upon reflection, that’s probably an underestimation.
Interestingly, this week, in an op-ed for a US student paper a female college student said she and her campus friends live in constant fear of being raped.
You see, speech is only limited when it doesn’t fit the narrative - and the narrative screeches ‘rape crisis’.
Anything else is deemed blasphemous.
‘Rape crisis’ rings in women’s ears to the point of causing anxiety, “when you’re walking, when you’re going somewhere new, whatever – that there is a danger you could get raped,” one wrote.
How free is that speech?
Living in a state of perpetual fear is not liberation.
It is not freedom and it is certainly not equality.
If the price of free speech is blaspheming a religion – be it Christianity or feminism – that price has to equal less than living life feeling like a victim. For then, you are already defeated. It’s pointless.
In her new book, ‘Unwanted Advances’, Laura Kipnis talks about the disempowerment of the liberation movement. “What I’m saying,” she writes, “is that policies and codes that bolster traditional femininity – which has always favoured stories about female endangerment over stories about female agency – are the last thing in the world that’s going to reduce sexual assault.”
Ultimately, the key question is, ‘How liberating is propaganda?’ And which politician will be brave enough to harp up, ‘Stop, this narrative is false. This isn’t free speech at all. We are not heading in the right direction’?