Is your council restricting your free speech?Posted on June 6, 2011
The left-libertarian Manifesto Club have an interesting new report out today, on the assault against the freedom to distribute leaflets and flyers.
It may sound like a mundane thing, but with scores of local authorities either banning leafleting in public places or demanding that people buy a licence this is a very real limitation on free speech and the free market. Whether you’re promoting a political cause or advertising a business, you should be free to offer a leaflet about it to someone if you so wish – just as they should be free to refuse to take it.
The report is well worth a read, not least because it deals with a current issue in its historical context, drawing parallels with the tyrannical licensing of printing in the 17th Century. We often forget when focusing on the big, titanic battles over treaties or Acts of Parliament that often our liberty is lost in the small things, the quiet erosions of freedom that creep up on us with soft steps.