I believe that freedom of speech is good to society and it should not be suppressed. According to Overgaauw (2009), when a person expresses his or her opinion, they get a chance to discover that either what they believed to be right is actually wrong, or that, their original beliefs are actually true. This enables people to know more than what they initially knew (Overgaauw, 2009). I think that the more people know, the better off they are as a society. Through freedom of speech, bad ideas are proved to be awful and good ideas become successful. Therefore, I feel that freedom of speech is a good idea because it contributes to a society that consists of knowledgeable people. Freedom of speech causes a society to acknowledge truths and to develop as a whole.
The claim that something can and should be done when freedom of speech is damaging to society is invalid because of lack of clarity on what can cause damage. According to Lacewing (2003), words that people say can seriously hurt others. Individuals who get hurt react in violent ways that are believed to cause damage to society (Lacewing, 2003). However, one thing that people need to understand is that a person might get hurt by words that have been spoken by another person, yet those words were meant to make people knowledgeable. People should acknowledge that a person may feel hurt by another person’s words merely because he or she is not impressed by such utterances. In such a case, words that were meant to make the society better are ill accepted by people who do not want to acknowledge truths and who later react by doing unpleasant things. I therefore think that doing something to suppress freedom of speech will prevent the society from acknowledging truths and from developing as a whole.
Lacewing, M. (2003). Mill on freedom of thought and expression. Routledge: Taylor & Francis Group. Overgaauw, D. (2009). The paradoxes of liberty: The freedom of speech (RE-) considered. Amsterdam Law Forum, 2 (1). Retrieved, February 22 2015, from http://amsterdamlawforum.org/article/view/104/186