We must do all we can to protect religious minorities – and areligious minoritites – living under the yoke of totalitarianism everywhere. Liberal and free thinkers in the Muslim world are a case in point.
‘I was beaten by prison guards who demanded to know who had made me write against Islam. In their minds, I could only say these things as the result of some plot, some conspiracy. The idea that I might simply want to express my independent thoughts was alien to them.
The 10 months I spent in Palestinian prison were the worse of my life. I faced constant pressure to retract my statements. I was told they had removed my blog and that I must apologize for publishing it. Even once I was freed, I was told I should never again use the Internet, nor meet with the media.
For months after my release, I was harassed by the security services, who further interrogated me and detained me without cause. I received letters from people saying they wanted to kill me.’
Read the rest here.
It takes no courage to speak up and repeat the popular points of view: we must give absolute protection to freedom of speech even to those voices we disagree with. And we must support people willing to speak up, even at personal risk, whether we agree with them or not!
As for regimes that limit and oppress freedom of speech: we must fight them every step of the way!