"Fox takes on the PC Brigade and Social Justice Warriors who want to restrain free speech."by Jessica Abrahams / July 14, 2016 / Leave a comment
Published in August 2016 issue of Prospect Magazine
I Find That Offensive! by Claire Fox (Biteback, £10)
The limits of the right to free speech have become the centre of one of the biggest debates of the internet age. In her new book, Claire Fox—libertarian and media commentator—takes on the “PC brigade” and “social justice warriors” who seem to want to restrain free speech.
Fox’s argument runs roughly as follows: we live in a “culture of offence” in which simply stating that one is hurt or offended by something is enough to shut down debate. This is the product of a thin-skinned health-and-safety generation, who are unable to grasp the distinction between physical and psychological harm.
The greatest manifestation of this, she argues, is taking place on campuses, where students demand “safe spaces” and “no platform” speakers with whom they disagree—but Fox’s target is much broader. We should not be concerned about hate speech, verbal bullying in schools or abusive Twitter trolls, she writes, because these are all “just words.”