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Berry Defends the Right to Offend

Press Release Stephen Berry

Berry Defends the Right to Offend

“It’s Erotica season again and the deluge of hate from prudish, anti-freedom nanny statists is about to begin,” says Stephen Berry, Independent candidate for Tamaki in the 2011 election.

Stephen Berry accepts that some recent Erotica billboards featuring images of women’s breasts are a “bit on the nose” but believes there should be no regulatory action taken against them. “I’d rather live in a free nation with boobs on billboards than a fascist one where preventing offense is a higher priority than property rights and freedom of expression. Let’s be honest, there wouldn’t be a supply if there weren’t a demand.”

Auckland City Councillor Cathy Casey has expressed her desire to lay a complaint with the Advertising Standards Authority stopping these billboards being allowed; an act vehemently opposed by Mr. Berry. “This is a direct attack on freedom of speech! It is a vile affront to the concept of freedom. It is a medieval, patriarchal molestation of liberty and must be resisted by all who value their inalienable personal sovereignty.”

The Tamaki candidate, who is openly gay, does himself find images of breasts on billboards offensive. “I can assure proponents of advertising regulations that boobs are right down the bottom of the list of things I want to look at while I go about my daily business, but I believe that freedom of speech and expression is far more important than whether I am offended or not.”

“I am offended by the expression of racist, nationalist, collectivist or anti-homosexual viewpoints. I am offended by churches, mosques and all other forms of religion. I am offended by the Labour party, chart topping boy bands, Kim Kardashian and blind devotion to sports teams. However, I would never, ever suggest that any of these things should be banned.”

“More than anything else, I am offended by the idea that others can use the law to stop them being offended. Why should some have the right to be protected from offence and not others?”


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