Freedom Of Speech, Yes! Free Speech Comes With Responsibilities.

Free speech is a privilege and a responsibility
Free Speech Comes With Responsibilities

Nobody can make you feel inferior without your permission.

Eleanor Roosevelt



Freedom of speech


Nobody can make you feel inferior without your permission. It sounds true, and it is true. And it is also not always right to hide behind that saying.









Some thoughts on the freedom of speech


If we don’t believe in freedom of expression for people we despise, we don’t believe in it at all. Well, nobody can make you feel bad without your permission!

Let’s think twice about that. It sounds true. And it is true. But what is missing here are the responsibilities. Because that saying also sets up a world where you have no responsibility for your speech.

I support the right to free speech. It is part of my profession when I support all those different people to present themselves and their offers. I believe in choosing to exercise that right responsibly and respectfully. Free speech comes with responsibilities. It is essential for society, and so is respect. Therefore, I recommend speaking carefully. Do your best to be kind. And don’t be radical unless it’s your last choice. Don’t be offensive!

The problem I see with the argument is that one person’s version of being offensive is very different from another. Be careful: When you hurt the values you want to protect, you lose your credibility. Walk your talk!

Just ask me personally


Let's get into a conversation. I'd love to hear from you. Please post any questions that may interest other readers in the comments. If you are interested in coaching or training, for personal questions about that and appointments you can reach me by e-mail, phone +49(0)30 864 213 68, and mobile phone +49(0)1577 704 53 56. You can also use this contact form. Please read the information about the privacy policy.

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This article is a short excerpt from the more comprehensive course materials my clients receive in a group or individual training or coaching.

Published: March 21, 2001
Author: Karsten Noack
Revision: September 24, 2020
Translation: ./.
German version: