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Democracy guarantees our right to protest

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The right to protest peacefully is fundamental to our liberal democracy. Our system of government is defined by the tolerance of dissenting minorities, and it is a right protected in our Constitution under the implied freedom of political communication.

Unfortunately, these basic facts can be ignored by governments sensitive to criticism, or visibly out of touch with mounting public opinion on important issues, or stuck trying to defend the indefensible positions and policies they have adopted.

This "intolerance" is most conspicuous, and indefensible, in the Morrison government's attitude to the student, and other, climate protests, and the shrill and ignorant criticisms of some of their "mates" in narrow sections of the media.

While, as a parent, I might prefer a greater concentration on school attendance and study, I will passionately defend the right of my children to protest, as effectively as they can, in support of something in which they passionately believe. Indeed, I want my children to be as independent as possible in both thought and action - it will be the passion and actions of our youth that determines our........

© Canberra Times