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Clarifying My Views On Freedom of Speech

Last updated 5 May 2013

A number of blogs and UK newspapers have written that Hamza Andreas Tzortzis has extremist inclinations due to his views on freedom of speech. The oft repeated quote they use is “we as Muslims reject the idea of freedom of speech, and even the idea of freedom”In this light a point of clarification is required.

The quote was taken from a YouTube video that was recorded almost 5 years ago. Even though the quote was taken out of context, the opinions of Hamza have changed since then. Hamza upholds freedom of expression and asserts that to reject this liberty is a self-defeating position. However, since he is a student of Islamic thought and philosophy he raises questions on the limits of expression including: since all nations have some restrictions limiting expression, where do we draw the line? What framework of law and values to we use to establish the limits to expression?