Should people have the right to say whatever they want?

Thinking-Question.jpg

Hub_Image_comment

In this issue, we'll be writing the THINKING QUESTIONS from Session TWO as a post.

Should people have the right to say whatever they want?

Please share your answers in the comments section and reply to other BNC members here.

Remember to support your opinions with reasons, and be open-minded to viewpoints other than your own. Try and bring in the knowledge you've learnt from your Burnet News Club too!

Comments (46)

  • Faringdon-logo-250x250.jpg grateful_blackcurrant | Faringdon Community College
    10 Sep 2019

    Yes because every human deserves to have their say

    Reply to this comment
    1. Brompton Westbrook logo assertive_keyboard | Brompton Westbrook Primary School B
      grateful_blackcurrant's comment 18 Sep 2019

      I agree every one should be heard were ever they are

      Reply to this comment
  • The-Ruth-Gorse-logo-250x250.jpg balanced_singer | The Ruth Gorse Academy
    10 Sep 2019

    Many people believe that freedom of speech is very important. This may be because it is a very predominant part of democracy.

    In 1688, the English Bill of Rights declared that "debates and proceedings in Parliament should not be questioned outside of Parliament." This allowed politicians to have freedom of speech; however, the general public wasn't allowed to have this simple right. But some important people in history fought for our right to have it. This is one very important reason why it's important to value our freedom, therefore we should be able to have it.

    https://rightsinfo.org/explainer-free-speech/

    On the other hand, others may think that freedom of speech isn't a good thing. This may be because people can say racist, hurtful and offensive things. For example, Boris Johnson said that women that wore burkas looked like "bank robbers" and "letterboxes". This is evidently a very offensive thing to say.

    Although people can say some very offensive things, freedom of speech can protect the opposite side of the argument. For example ( if we link back to Boris Johnson ) there was a debate in parliament where a Sikh Labour MP was demanding that he apologized. This is another good reason, why people should have the right to say whatever they want.

    https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/boris-johnson-islamophobia-pmqs-tanmanjeet-singh-dhesi-muslim-letterbox-racist-a9091506.html

    Others may believe that freedom of speech is bad or useless. This is because some people think that the only form of speech that the public have is voting. However, this is not the case owing to the fact that, we can send letters to MPs or start protests.

    I myself believe that freedom of speech is a positive thing. This is for the reason that if we didn't many people would only have one point of view and wouldn't take into account other people's opinions. This can lead to people not being happy with rules and society in general.

    Reply to this comment
  • Birchwood-logo-250x250.jpg entertaining_strawberry | Birchwood C of E Primary School
    11 Sep 2019

    My first thought to this question was, yes of coarse. But now that my class has talked about it, I have mixed opinions.

    Yes
    People should have the right to say what they want, in China, you can see Hong Kong's protests because they don't have the right to say what they want. We also experienced this is Burnet News Live, where we had to write down our favorite food, and some people werent allowed to have that as they're favorite because of laws. Its the same with China and Hong Kong, but way worse. So yes, I think people should be allowed.

    No
    People shouldn't have the right to say what they want, because of what it might be. If someone says something really offensive, should it be allowed, this was also in Burnet News Live, it was the main reason. Some people got really offended and emotional, so no. We cant always trust what people are going to say, so we shouldn't be allowed to say what we want.

    These are both of my thoughts, I hope it helps people make an easier decision.

    Reply to this comment
    1. tom Tom @ the BNC
      entertaining_strawberry's comment 11 Sep 2019

      Thank you for your comment! You've looked at both sides of the argument here. I have a couple of questions - on the Yes side, why should people have this right? And on the No side - do you think people have a right NOT to be offended? Or should that be OK sometimes?

      Reply to this comment
  • Weston-Favell-logo-250x250.jpg honorable_conclusion | Weston Favell Academy
    11 Sep 2019

    I believe that everyone should have the right to say what they want to but they should not abuse this right.
    Sometimes, people may need to say harsh things for others to make a positive change in their life or the way they work. For example, the peaceful protest of the 1913 suffragette parade made a statement about how females should have the right to vote. Despite being a harsh way of saying it, the parade was still effective and (eventually) resulted in woman getting the vote. This shows that people should have the right to say whatever they want because sometimes it can have a positive consequence.
    However, there are certain times where people should keep their thoughts to themselves. Sometimes, it can be rude and seriously upset someone. For example, before the English civil war broke out, the monarch at the time (Charles I), insulted parliament. This resulted in a rebellion. This shows that people need to think about what they say because it can cause terrible consequences.
    In conclusion, I believe that people should say what they believe unless it can have awful consequences.
    https://www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/peace-protests-dallas-response/

    Reply to this comment
    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ the BNC
      honorable_conclusion's comment 12 Sep 2019

      Can people always tell the consequences of what they say?

      Reply to this comment
  • Ormiston-Bushfield-logo-250x250.jpg noble_tornado | Ormiston Bushfield Academy
    11 Sep 2019

    After reading about the affairs in China this is what I have come up with . This will be a similar approach to entertaining_strawberry.

    Yes
    People in China should have the right to say what they think about the government and the affairs the have put the country in . Every citizen has that right to speak out (human rights order ) and sometimes the view of the people can change the governments mind because they see the point of view from people that lives change because of new approaches to problems .

    No
    People in china have sometimes been known to use a different force when it comes to speaking out about how they feel in mass crowds (protests) and sometimes they take a wrong approach with violence (how they are acting at the minute ) and sometimes even are abusive to law enforcers who do not make the law but enforce it but anyway back on to the subject . The right to speak out is a human right but it has not really explained the context . When you feel as if you need to speak out or you have an opinion on something you should take a calm approach to it and explain what you think rather than go on a mass protest and tear up the city that the people before them and them built .

    Conclusion
    I believe that the people of china have that right to say what the think but taking such a violent approach is no way to act

    Thank you for reading

    Reply to this comment
    1. Tiff-Avatar.jpg Tiff @ the BNC
      noble_tornado's comment 12 Sep 2019

      You've given a good reason for the importance of freedom of speech which you've explained!

      What happens if calmly speaking out doesn't work? Or if a government refused to listen to the people?

      Also, it's important to be accurate when we are explaining something in the news. Although Hong Kong is part of China, it is run differently (this is called "one country, two systems") so it's best to be specific if are talking about Hong Kong or China.

      Reply to this comment
  • Portobello-logo-250x250.jpg passionate_dinosaur | Portobello High School
    13 Sep 2019

    We think that it is okay to say whatever you want as long as your being peaceful and respectful about it and respecting other people’s point of view too.If you want to talk about yourself then that’s fine.Every human has the right to say what they want.

    Reply to this comment
  • Birchwood-logo-250x250.jpg buzzing_atom | Birchwood C of E Primary School
    13 Sep 2019

    Well in my class we discussed about this a lot and it caused lots of discussion and arguments.
    In my opinion,i think that it depends on what people have to say because if someone had something horrible to say about someone they cant just go around saying aloud they should just keep it to themselves.I think people who have good things to say about the world and stick up for human rights that's good you can say that to the world.For example Martin Luther King Junior Stuck up for black people and himself all because the rules for black people were very harsh back then.Another example is when Rosa Parks stood up for herself and other black people by not moving out of her seat to let a white person sit down.So i think it depends on other peoples opinions and thoughts

    Reply to this comment
    1. tom Tom @ the BNC
      buzzing_atom's comment 13 Sep 2019

      Thanks for your thoughts, buzzing_atom. You've given examples here which have supported your opinion.

      Are there some things that some might think is horrible, but should actually be allowed?

      Reply to this comment
  • Birchwood-logo-250x250.jpg crafty_brain | Birchwood C of E Primary School
    13 Sep 2019

    yes every human diservese there say think of it like if you were not allowed a say you would be upset so you need to let other people have there say

    Reply to this comment
  • Portobello-logo-250x250.jpg talented_clementine | Portobello High School
    13 Sep 2019

    No, because some of the time it's not appropriate like in the classroom you shouldn't use bad language.

    Reply to this comment
  • Newbury-Park-logo-250x250.jpg passionate_sheep | Newbury Park Primary School
    13 Sep 2019

    Well said! it is true that people need a say

    Reply to this comment
  • Birchwood-logo-250x250.jpg determined_orange | Birchwood C of E Primary School
    15 Sep 2019

    First of all, I thought that no one should have a say because people can say anything if they wanted to. It can be offensive to people, such as different skin tone, different religion and many more. But when we were talking about it in class, I understud that not everyone says mean, rude things. I realised if someone was making the wrong decisions no one can ever stand up for there rights. That's when my teacher mentioned the Hong Kong crisis. Pupils of Hong Kong couldn't stand up for there rights. China just said what they wanted to instead of listening to other people. That could have helped the situation they are in right now.

    This is my opinion about the think questions. If anyone has a disagreement about this, I am ready for it

    Reply to this comment
  • Brompton Westbrook logo easygoing_weaver | Brompton Westbrook Primary School A
    16 Sep 2019

    No, as it might offend and hurt people. Some people just speak their mind but it could hurt others feelings you need to be mindful of others.

    Reply to this comment
  • Ormiston-Bushfield-logo-250x250.jpg practical_yuzu | Ormiston Bushfield Academy
    16 Sep 2019

    To me the answer is very obvious. Yes, people should have the right to say whatever they wish to say whether it be offensive or not. I can see a large majority of people saying that we should limit our free speech when it is considered harmful or offensive,in other words hate speech,the issue with this argument is that it contradicts its self. As by definition of free speech which is "the right to express any opinions without censorship or restraint." according to the google dictionary includes hate speech which the definition of hate speech being "abusive or threatening speech or writing that expresses prejudice against a particular group, especially on the basis of race, religion, or sexual orientation." The key word in the definition of free speech is ANY opinions wherever those be abusive or threatening speech that expresses prejudice against a particular group.

    Another problem with just saying no hate speech is that by definition it is subjective what is considered abusive or expresses prejudice is a matter of opinion. I could argue that those who disagree are speaking hate speech due to it threatening my beliefs. In fact that is how most forms of censoring occur by claiming that the opinion stated was unnecessary hate speech. If we wish to live in a free society we must accept free speech no matter how terrible the hateful side is. We would achieve a much healthier democracy by arguing with those who are hateful then just silencing them as that will achieve much more.

    Also I would like to say I don't support hate speech in any kind I am just saying that it should not be tossed away and silenced as what is considered hateful changes from person to person.

    Reply to this comment
    1. Olivia-Avatar.jpg Olivia @ the BNC
      practical_yuzu's comment 17 Sep 2019

      You say that hate speech is subjective and that what is considered abusive is a matter of opinion. Why might someone disagree with this? Can we come to a consensus about what 'abusive' means?

      Reply to this comment
  • Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg content_lemon | Boutcher C of E Primary School
    16 Sep 2019

    Should people have the right to say whatever they want?

    This is quite a hard question, as there are 2 sides of the argument, and there are my reasons for both:

    Yes, #FreedomOfSpeech, we should have the right to say whatever we want…
    because we should have the right to express our opinion, and if we hadn’t in the past, just think of the consequences! Women wouldn’t be allowed to vote, or drive or have any equality over men. It’s the same thing with Rosa Parks, Christine Darden and Martin Luther King - equality!
    Apart from that, I believe people should have a say in what is going on. After all, it affects them the most. That being said, I can see why the Hong Kongers protest; they want their voices to be heard.

    No – we shouldn’t have the right…
    because if we said anything we wanted at anytime, then a) it would be hectic, people saying their thoughts all the time (people would probably take advantage of it as well!) and b) we would share our thoughts about, perhaps, people we don’t like, and their faults etc. and that will hurt their feelings – whether you like them or not.
    This was the case in the last BNC Live, where an author called Judy Wycroft published a racist book, then give a talk to a University about it. Many people thought that she should in no way express her opinion, as it would hurt people – truthfully.
    In Conclusion, I feel that you should be able to express your opinion, as it is simply a human right – but only if you are certain that it will not hurt anyone, or unless it ends up badly, with consequences. To do so, I would suggest thinking about how you would feel if someone said that to you. To be honest, I do have mixed opinions on this – at the start of this comment, I was thinking, “Obviously!” etc, but now that I have thought about reasons in my balanced argument, it has tipped my thoughts…

    Reply to this comment
  • Michael-Faraday-logo-250x250.jpg glorious_power | Michael Faraday School
    17 Sep 2019

    I think everyone should have a right to say something and then they can take that into consideration then there will be more peace in Hong kong

    Reply to this comment
  • Birchwood-logo-250x250.jpg talented_cookie | Birchwood C of E Primary School
    17 Sep 2019

    When I have heard this question I knew that my answer was a 'yes' but now when I think about it now more, I know that both of those answers are true for me. Here are my answers:

    Yes:
    I think yes because if it's something important to think about and nobody lets people decide from that place but only the Government can, then if they decide on something that everyone else disagreed on then there would be no choice but to have to stick to that option for a long time and they would have to deal with it. It would cause more chaos to that place with lots of disagreements and maybe the Government would get furious about it and ignore everyone even if something bad would happen.

    No:
    I also think no because what if someone said something that was offensive to a few people and that could be: skin tone, religion and more! What if someone said something in front of thousands of people and something that they could have said wouldn't have been allowed to say but they did and that would cause a bit of chaos.

    I hope that reading others opinions will help me to decide one of those sides.

    Reply to this comment
  • Portobello-logo-250x250.jpg happy_iceberg | Portobello High School
    17 Sep 2019

    Yes because being able to have a voice is a human right but people should be aware of the consequences that come with what they say, for example if I say “God is not real.”, Cristian people may think I’m against the bible or I may be charged with blasphemy in some countries. So yes but always be aware of the consequences, think before you speak.

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg jolly_cricket | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    yes because every has a right to vote (British value)

    Reply to this comment
    1. St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg free_reflection | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
      jolly_cricket's comment 18 Sep 2019

      I agree because none tells you what choice to make.

      Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg jolly_cricket | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    Second thoughts. Yes and no. People can troll you.

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg energetic_cherry | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    Yes they can but they need to use nice language

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg gentle_strategy | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    demorcy is a good thing iagree

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg comfortable_coyote | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    hi jolly cricket i agree because british values are very important

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg authentic_chocolate | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    hi jolly cricket i agree what your saying every one should have a chance to vote

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg best_raspberry | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    hi jolly_cricket i disagree with you because what if its bad words to offend people so sometimes you shouldn't be allowed to say things that might offend people or even hurt peoples emotions.

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg dazzling_blueberry | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    hi jolly-cricket i agree with you

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg energetic_cherry | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    Hi,jolly-cricket I also agree with u everyone needs a chance to vote and be heard

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg observant_jambul | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    i think that we do not have right say WHATEVER we want i think we should not talk about other people in a rude way. I think we should not swear.but i think we should ALWAYS talk to our parents/teachers about our problems or feeling

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg optimistic_painting | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    Hi Jolly_cricket I agree with you because vote is democracy so everyone gets to vote.

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg free_wallaby | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    hi jolly cricket i agree with you because everyone should get a chance to speak and be heard

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg focused_panther | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    18 Sep 2019

    Personally i think both ways because everyone has the right to speak but no as well as yes because viewers may say things that offend others in religious ways.

    Reply to this comment
  • Brompton Westbrook logo wondrous_bee | Brompton Westbrook Primary School B
    18 Sep 2019

    people do have the right to be heard but you have to think about it because it might not be nice

    Reply to this comment
    1. Boutcher-logo-250x250.jpg gregarious_moon | Boutcher C of E Primary School
      wondrous_bee's comment 19 Sep 2019

      Yes! Because we don't want to deal with more violence.
      Well done wondrous_bee that says it all

      Reply to this comment
  • Graveney-logo-250x250.jpg beloved_chocolate | Graveney School
    18 Sep 2019

    I think that people should not be able to say whatever they want. My opinion is that, in most scenarios, people should be able to say almost whatever they want, however in some cases it can be harmful to others and themselves. Being able to say whatever you want can be harmful or dangerous for many reasons.

    1. If what is said is discriminatory or prejudiced in some way.
    If somebody says something racist, sexist, xenophobic, homophobic, etc., it can be harmful to the subject of the comments. This is because it could cause them to be discriminated against by others, who may be encouraged by their statements, as well as possibly causing them a lot of upset and offending them, which could be bad for their self-esteem. If this is repeated, it could escalate to bullying, and could emotionally and mentally harm the person it is directed at. As well as this, if the person who says it is important in some way, this could change the minds of other people, and cause them to act this way as well, which would make their lives much more difficult and could lead to more discrimination.

    2. If what is said is provocative.
    If somebody says something that enrages people, or provokes, them, this could possibly cause them harm. This is because the subject may get angry, and possibly put the person in danger of harm from them.

    3. Saying things that are classified.
    For many politicians and people working for the government, police, or justice system, they are told classified information. If they could say whatever they want, this classified information may be leaked, and this could cause political uproar - though the leaking may be beneficial to the public, it could be bad for the global position of the country and ruin international relations if other countries disagreed with what was leaked, or if concerned them. Although this may be a good thing, it could be financially dangerous for many countries and their people, and provoke poverty. However, I do think that if it is concerning for the population of the country, it should be told to the public, as it is important for their welfare and country.

    4. If what is said is insulting.
    Saying something insulting to somebody could be bad for their mental health or dangerous for the person who says it if the subject reacts violently. As well as this, saying insulting things is simply a mean and antisocial thing to so.

    However, free speech is a good thing as well. Many people have changed the world for the better by speaking out. For example, Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and other activists against segregation in he US and the apartheid in South Africa all helped to end racism in these countries, and improve the lives of many BAME (Black and Minority Ethnic) people there and in other countries. As well as this, It is often very good for people to stand up for what they believe in, and free speech from many, or just one person, can very often change laws and people's views, positively. As well as this, it is their choice whether or not to put themselves in danger for campaigning, and their free speech and determination can often be very beneficial to the social and political state of countries.

    Overall, I think that Free Speech is a good thing in many cases, but it can be harmful to the speaker and subjects in some cases. I believe that people should be able to say whatever they want, but only if it does not put the mental, emotional, political and financial safety of anybody in danger.

    Reply to this comment
  • Beverley-St-Nicholas-logo-250x250.jpg precious_shark | Beverley St Nicholas Primary School
    19 Sep 2019

    Yes because everyone has a right to say what they want no one is different everyone is the same

    Reply to this comment
  • Beverley-St-Nicholas-logo-250x250.jpg dynamic_weaver | Beverley St Nicholas Primary School
    19 Sep 2019

    Anybody can have their own opinion.It wouldn’t be fair if we couldn’t say what we think!

    Reply to this comment
  • St-Gregorys-logo-250x250.jpg jolly_cricket | St Gregory's Catholic Primary School
    19 Sep 2019

    you can have the right to say something but not bad words

    Reply to this comment

You must be logged in to post a comment