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Brenton Tarrant Sentence A Relief - Gagging Orders Should Now Be Relaxed

Following the life sentencing of the Christchurch terrorist, the Free Speech Coalition is calling for all remaining suppression orders and restrictions on New Zealanders to freely discuss and understand the terrible time in our history, to be lifted.

Jordan Williams, a Spokesperson for the Free Speech Coalition, lawyer, and centre-right political commentator said:

"Unfortunately, this terrible event is a part of our history - New Zealanders should be able to read and understand what evil looks like, learn the details of the surrounding events, and debate their significance."

"Many of us draw the line at the video. While we worry that suppressing it crosses a line that has to be defended to ensure the suppression power is not available and abused, the video adds nothing to the pursuit of truth, which is the core justification of free speech. So we do not call for that suppression to be lifted. But like the Breivik manifesto, the Tarrant ramblings should be legal to read, and analyze."

"Part of a free society is the right to freely identify, understand, and debate evil, and what drives it. New Zealanders should not stay under easily evaded restrictions that are just a bad precedent form of denunciation, now we are sure this murderer will stay where he belongs."

"We also understand there may be restrictions in place preventing publication of certain matters pertaining to the Police. To avoid any conspiracy theorists getting carried away, it would be appropriate for the Court to lift veil of secrecy or suppression orders remaining.”

Dane Giraud, a Spokesperson for the Free Speech Coalition, and centre-left comedian and screenwriter said:

"The overwhelming response by everyday New Zealanders sent a hopeful message around the world. Now, with the chapter that the sentencing of this heartless murderer represents closed, our country is ready to examine and come to terms with the why."

"I believe New Zealand hasn’t always been prepared to reckon with our history. The failure to address our founding narrative in our school system, from the perspective of tangata whenua especially, is an example of this, and the confusion and hurt that has resulted from this suppression is still felt today."

"As a country we said, in the face of this killer, they, the people you killed, the community you tried to shatter, are us. The material still suppressed represents our collective history. Our history belongs to us, and New Zealanders shouldn’t be denied the ability to properly come to terms with it."

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