LETTER: Free speech has its limits

I have been following the debate regarding your decision to post a letter claiming that vaccines are harmful and read your editorial statement in response to that debate. You stated that you support the right of everyone to share their opinions and made a grand “free speech for all” declaration, however, I think you are confusing the validity of sharing opinions with making false statements.

For example, there has been lots of debate about the expansion of bike lanes in downtown Victoria – there are both pros and cons to this issue and valid points on both sides and therefore, there are various opinions. However, other topics, such as the “flat earth” conspiracy are clearly in violation of every single scientific fact. Would you feel comfortable printing two articles – one supporting the round earth belief and one supporting the flat earth belief – with equal footing? No – because that isn’t responsible reporting.

This is exactly how the Trump presidency has twisted the truth. Even though every single metric proved that there were more people at Obama’s inauguration, their team claimed that it was “their opinion” that more people came to see Trump. That isn’t an opinion – it’s a lie, and when you promote the kind of lies expressed by the anti-vaxxer you published, you aren’t just promoting a lie, you are threatening people’s lives.

Please reconsider next time.

Claire McCutcheon

Saanich

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Oak Bay sailor stranded in U.S. hospital after suffering massive stroke at sea

Glenn Wakefield’s rescue involved five airplanes and took more than 48 hours

First fall storm expected to hit Greater Victoria tonight

Heavy rainfall, winds expected over the next several days

UPDATED: Crews contain fire to attic of Central Saanich home

Firefighters are responding to a structure fire in Central Saanich

Oak Bay chief puts an end to dad jokes on police Twitter

No more jokes on Oak Bay Police Twitter account

COVID-19: 4 more deaths, 366 new cases in B.C. since Friday

A total of 8,208 people in B.C. have tested positive for COVID-19 since January

POLL: Do you plan on allowing your children to go trick or treating this year?

This popular annual social time will look quite different this year due to COVID-19

Majority needed to pass COVID-19 budget, B.C. premier says

John Horgan pushes urgent care centres in first campaign stop

Nanaimo RCMP shut down illegal racing and stunt driving site

Police “swoop in” to seize vehicles and issue violation tickets

Public health officials urge Canadians to limit contacts again as COVID-19 cases rise

Canada has committed $1 billion to buy at least 154 million doses of vaccines from five different companies

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

B.C. could be without a new leader for multiple weeks after Election Day: officials

More than 20K mail-in voting packages were requested within a day of B.C. election being called

Vancouver Island family overwhelmed with 14 Lab puppies

Litter may be one of the biggest ever

Islands Trust Conservancy gets funding for protection of at-risk species

Conservancy manages habitat for more than 25 plant and animal species at risk

Most Read