I don’t want this blog to become an extended plug for the New Statesman, but Peter Wilby in his excellent media column captures much of what I feel about the cartoons furore.
There have been a number of reasons why the rate of posting on this blog has slowed down over the last few days, but among has been a subconscious nervousness on my part. On the one hand there is the temptation to assert boldy and fearlessly my own secular liberal views on free speech. On the other, I am not just an individual who publishes a blog but a Liberal Democrat councillor and group leader in a multicultural town on an authority which we control.
Free speech must be defended, but of course it doesn’t exist in a vacuum. We bloggers don’t have editors to tone down our more outrageous statements or to spike our more ill-advised articles. So rather than run the risk of a few badly-chosen words get misinterpreted and cause trouble in my own backyard I allowed myself to be occupied with other things. There! I feel better for admitting it. Perhaps Wilby’s article helps me to salve my troubled conscience.