Free speech as our primary virtue

History teaches us that without free speech society soon stumbles and falls into the hands of a despot.

It should come as no surprise that Jordan Peterson believes free speech should be the primary value in our society. Not just to liberate thought, but to liberate people and potential.

Free speech is indistinguishable from thought.

We think and act in words. Thought is literally the process by which consciousness makes adjustments to our presumptions.

If we don’t make free speech and the role consciousness plays in using it to adjust our presuppositions the most important mechanism of our society, we’ll all stagnate and things will fall apart.

Free speech is a precondition for mental and social health. One of the things that’s quite striking about clinical practice in psychiatry and psychology - independent of the pure medical scope - is that all the great clinicians, regardless of their school of thought, agreed that free speech accompanied by intense listening was psychologically and physiologically transformative.

It’s in accordance with how we understand the function of the brain and its evolution. As human beings we’re unique in that we produce abstracted representations of the world of - let’s call them stories - before we implement those actions for real.

We test out the utility and validity of the abstracted patterns and representations before we act them out. That’s what evolution is.

When you interfere with free speech and free thought, you interfere with evolution.

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