Leslyn Lewis: A strong society must encourage, not limit, debate

DM

The old childhood adage, “Stick and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” is dead. This simple phrase, quoted by so many from my generation, has helped a lot of parents explain a simple truth to children: no matter what someone says to you, your feelings and emotions are your own responsibility. We understood that people might have a bad opinion of us, and they might even say bad things about us, but their words could only hurt us if we let them. Today, however, people are not free to disagree, and even an innocent or naive verbal misstep can have dire consequences. This is most evident in our current political climate. While “PC culture” has been an issue for years, it has taken a sudden turn towards a cultish “us” versus “them” narrative.

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