Saturday, September 30, 2023

Jonathan Turley: Harvard's Jacinda Ardern calls on the United Nations to crack down on free speech as a weapon of war

Jacinda Ardern may no longer be Prime Minister of New Zealand, but she was back at the United Nations
continuing her call for international censorship. Ardern is now one of the leading anti-free speech figures in the world and continues to draw support from political and academic establishments. 

In her latest attack on free speech, Ardern declared free speech as a virtual weapon of war. She is demanding that the world join her in battling free speech as part of its own war against “misinformation” and “disinformation.” Her views, of course, were not only enthusiastically embraced by authoritarian countries, but the government and academic elite.

In her speech, she notes that we cannot allow free speech to get in the way of fighting things like climate change. She notes that they cannot win the war on climate change if people do not believe them about the underlying problem. The solution is to silence those with opposing views. It is that simple.

While some of us have denounced her views as an attack on free expression, Harvard rushed to give her not one but two fellowships. While the free speech community denounced her for unrelenting attacks on this human right, Harvard praised her for “strong and empathetic political leadership” and specifically enlisted her to help “improve content standards and platform accountability for extremist content online.”

I actually have no objection to the inclusion of Ardern as a Harvard fellow. She is a former world leader who is leading the movement against free speech. It is a view that students should consider in looking at these controversies. However, Harvard has heralded her views with no acknowledgment of her extreme antagonism toward free speech principles. There is also little countervailing balance at the school with fellows supporting free speech as a human right. Rather, Harvard (which ranks dead last on the recent free speech survey) has become a virtual clearinghouse for anti-free speech academics and advocates.

Free speech is now commonly treated on campuses as harmful. Rather than the right that defines us, it is treated as an existential threat.

What is so chilling is to hear Ardern express her fealty to free speech as she calls on the nations of the world to severely curtail it to prevent people from undermining their policies and priorities. She remains the “empathetic” face of raw censorship and intolerance. She is now the virtual ambassador-at-large for global speech regulation and criminalization.

This article was first published HERE

Jonathan Turley is an American attorney, legal scholar, writer, commentator, and legal analyst in broadcast and print journalism.


DeeM said...

What a total embarrassment to NZ Jacinda Ardern is.
She's like a caricature from an old Disney kids movie. The smiling, apparently kind and caring, motherly figure who secretly stares into her mirror at night to get her adoration and compliments while screwing everybody else over.

That's what growing up in a religious cult, followed by joining a political cult leads to, I guess. Someone who's moral compass is broken - crushed by their own ego and narcissism.

Phil said...

Jacinda's speech to the UN when she was Prime Minister was condemned around the world. Even The Times newspaper did an editorial criticising Jacinda Ardern. None of this was reported in New Zealand which raises concern about free speech in this country. The NZ media suppressed a global news story to protect our Labour Prime Minister.

Anonymous said...

The most intelligent option for Ms Ardern would be to keep her mouth shut.
This might even give her reason to be at Harvard - it is losing its cachet daily by employing her.

Anonymous said...

DeeM, you should be a regular writer. Your comments are always directly over the target.

Rob Beechey said...

She’s in good company. Modern day academia has replaced critical thinking with woke ideology. Her legacy, a little South Pacific country, divided and in smouldering ruins. How could we have been so stupid allowing this vile Marxist the freedom to wreck what was once a rock star economy.

Anonymous said...

Jacinda certainly knows how to control the narrative like a cult leader and Jacindamania was a bit cult-like. Very interesting comment DeeM. The whole identitarian thing with groups cancelling each other is a bit like competing radical cults. Lots of conviction and belief, not much rational thinking. Our universities don’t even seem to promote critical thinking anymore. It’s more about indoctrination, as evidenced by our teaching and journalism graduates.

Anonymous said...

Such an address in the name of NZ should be a screaming headline in the NZ mainstream media.
The previous time she made such a statement at the UN, I never heard a word about it in NZ.
What's the best that our media will repeat their censorship by omission ?

Anonymous said...

That evil woman can say what she likes. Media in the usa will not be complicit as our pathetc left media. Hope she stays over there.

Anonymous said...

The UN is the inverse of what it claims to be, and as such attracts individuals who are the inverse of what they claim to be.

Anonymous said...

People who grow up in or become involved deeply in religions are taught to believe that they have the only truth. They act as if they are superior and will not listen to another point of view. Idealism is what drives them.
Unfortunately our country's agenda of Maori wonderfulness has set people up to believe they have the only world view that matters and they are wimpering victims of Colonialism.
The global free speech war is well under way and the NZ race wars have begun. It didn't need to be this way and both fingers are pointing at Dame Jacinda Ardern, possibly the most hated woman in NZ.

Erica said...

Jacinda's ' religion" is socialism which can be backed up by Marxist ideas. Her bizarre statements while PM, like 'We are the source of Truth' and 'We have the Science' seems to suggest her socialism was a political religion whereby what religions promised in the next world was promised in this one instead -a worldly. utopia. Matauranga Maori? She has also been described by commentators as a liberal progressivist.
She certainly seems to have religious fervour with her single minded attack on disinformation and free speech which means cancelling views different from her's. This reinforces she has 'The Truth" which is surely a sort of infallibility status.

Anonymous said...

Anyone else notice last week that the NZ media were all over Ardern when the reporter tried questioning her climate hypocrisy in Canada ?
The same media that studiously ignoring her outrageous anti- democracy address to the UN - again .

Anonymous said...

It is astounding to a vast number of New Zealanders as to how the global stage has embraced Ardern basically off the back of displaying sympathy for victims of a mosque shooting (committed by an Australian visitor) and for locking down the whole country in a futile endeavour to banish covid-19 from entering the population. When the first covid case was reported, from a resident returning from overseas, Ardern advised that “they had contacted passengers sitting two rows in front and two rows behind”. The country was in such blessed hands! A fool emperor with no clothes! And her unfettered governing Labour Party has introduced a racial divide in administration over the past three years that has never existed before. Her legacy is less than zero; it is abhorrent. Of course there will always be her devoted followers, but they are like lemmings over a cliff, the perfect subjects for a Pied Piper who had no substance, inept skills at management and achievement but a great ability to say just the right topical words, flash some grinning teeth and wring her hands to convince the gullible to follow her. In two weeks, the NZ election will see that path to be oblivion. The media need to follow the results closely, because normal service is about to resume.

Dave said...

Jacinda will go down in history as the most divisist, unkind, undemocratic pm in NZs history.
The damage that she and her complicent underlings have inflicted on our poor country will take generations, if ever to fix.
The sad thing is that we still have a large number of her converts, Labour, Greens and Maori party, still willing to take us further down that dark hole and finish us off for good.
We must as a nation take decisive action this election tion to begin to turn this country around. Point is I'm not sure the opposition party's or our people have the fortitude to make it happen.

Anonymous said...

I have always thought that she is the devil in disguise. 100% pure evil. Hooefully she gets a gruesome demise.

Don said...

Beware! Before making a judgment let us see the speech in its real form. Don Brash fell into this trap by making a reasonable speech at Orewa which the media turned into a racist rant and because few people saw the actual words it became a weapon against him. Why is Jacinda's speech not being reported here?One should see the primary source lest one is manipulated in the direction chosen by the media.