Tuesday, 29 May 2012

At last someone has the courage to state the obvious

This is Education Secretary, Michael Gove today at the Leveson Inquiry into press standards

"There is a danger at the moment that what we may see are judges, celebrities, and the establishment, all of whom have an interest in taking over from the Press as arbiters of what a free Press should be, imposing either soft or hard regulation.
‘What we should be encouraging is the maximum amount of freedom of expression and the maximum amount of freedom of speech...’
... ‘Journalists should be more assertive in making the case for Press freedom, and politicians should recognise that we have nothing to gain and everything to lose from fettering a Press which has helped keep us honest in the past and ensured that the standard of debate in this country is higher than in other jurisdictions.
‘The big picture is that there is a chilling atmosphere towards freedom of expression which emanates from the debate around Leveson...
'I think that there are laws already in place that we should respect and principles already in place that we should uphold that are central to ensuring that this country remains free...’
[He added that in his view previous inquiries into national scandals had produced reports which ‘give birth to quangos, commissions, and law-making creatures that actually generate over-regulation, over-prescription, and sometimes a cure that is worse than the original disease..."

Now wouldn't it be wonderful if, say, a bishop were to stand up in the teeth of hysterical opposition at some kind of synodical gathering and say something similar, and as informed, articulate and persuasive, about the need to defend theological diversity and freedom  - and the means to ensure them - in the Church of England (or - stretching credulity even further - the Church in Wales). 
It could be a long wait

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