This week has left us asking, what does the future of speech look like ?
This week has left us asking, what does the future of speech look like ?

Freedom of Speech: After this week, we need to talk

SINCE Kyle Sandilands' 'disgusting' comments on-air contrasted the continuing Israel Folau trial, many have been asking what does the future of freedom of speech look like?

Amidst explicit language, Sandilands said that the Virgin Mary was not only a promiscuous liar, but that those who believe otherwise are 'dumb'.

His critics took no time to draw the comparison of his conduct, with that of Israel Folau suggesting that there was a double-standard at play.

Immediately after making his Instagram post Folau was removed from his workplace and is currently undergoing a legal battle for his career.

While Sandilands has only received online petitions to be deplatformed, the highest reaching over 28,000 signatures. 

Comments identify the double standard given to Sandilands over Folau.
Comments identify the double standard given to Sandilands over Folau.

 

It raises questions about why the same measures applied to Folau were not also given to Sandilands. 

Is it because of the popularity Sandilands?  Were his comments more acceptable? Or is it the organisation he works for?

 

 

Whether someone has the right to make Sandilands' or Folau's comments legally remains confusing, especially after the government released their draft Religious Discrimination Bill.

Attorney General Christian Porter said the bill aims, "to provide protection for people against discrimination on the basis of their religion or religious belief, or lack thereof."

However, he also stated, "The laws will protect people from being discriminated against, but will not give them a licence to discriminate against other people, or engage in harassing or vilifying speech."

 

"I expect the Bills can be introduced in October and considered by both the House and Senate before the end of the calendar year, allowing time for a Senate inquiry."

 

This means under the bill you are protected from being fired from a workplace for your beliefs, but not protected for making discriminatory statements.

The government seems to have made the bill neutral regarding Folau's case, strategically or otherwise. 

The impact of Folau's case has only grown thanks to the bill being introduced in October, leaving the future of speech holding its breath. 

Since making the comments, Sandilands told The Daily Telegraph, "I'm sorry if I offended anyone with my comments."

Offended listeners are calling for an official statement to be made either on-air or in a public statement, protesting both the KIIS studios and Sandilands LA home.


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