Filed by: Alex Blaze
April 23, 2010 1:00 PM
Here's another story about how restrictions on free speech ultimately get used to quell political debate and silence certain opinions, no matter what the intentions were in developing those restrictions.
I was following a story from Toronto last month on Page1Q (didn't post about it here, though) about how the Toronto Pride committee set up a panel to pre-approve signs people wanted to march with in pride this year.
In a press release, Pride Toronto co-chair Jim Cullen wrote that all messages must "support the theme of the 2010 festival, celebrating '30 Years of Pride in Toronto.'"
People immediately thought the new policy was meant to keep Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (QuAIA) out of the parade, although some people thought it was about homocons as well (they're always the victim). A Facebook group called "Don't Sanitize Pride" was created and thousands joined. The Pride committee's spokesperson refused to say why the policy was put in place.