Your reluctance has nothing to do with “free speech”

I am still bewildered by the large number of liberals here who can’t stop whining about “free speech”. Really, if you deem the right of a few fascist scumbags to freely spread their hate more valuable than the right of discriminated and exploited minorities to defend themselves, then I’m afraid that you may as well be part of the problem. We’ve all grown up with that famous poem by Martin Niemöller (“Als sie die Juden holten, habe ich nicht protestiert; ich war ja kein Jude”, etc.). Well, they’re coming for the black people, the muslims, the sans papiers, the poor, the women now. What have you learned from this nice, widely quoted poem? Sure, it looks good on a monument or a poster. But what have you actually learned from it? Your reluctance has nothing to do with “free speech”. It only means that your own safety and well-being are not at stake (yet). In which case you could at least have the decency not to denounce those who are fighting for theirs.

Mathijs van de Sande on Anti-fascist activists take on Trump and the far right: “Resistance is our only shot” (Guardian)