'Gove's open-ended extremism definition leaves the door open to shutting down free speech', claims Farage

'Gove's open-ended extremism definition leaves the door open to shutting down free speech', claims Farage

Gove's 'OPEN ENDED' extremism definition leaves the door open to 'a shutting down of free speech'

GB News
Nigel Farage

By Nigel Farage

Published: 14/03/2024

- 21:48

Updated: 14/03/2024

- 21:59

Michael Gove has named five groups that will be assessed against a new government definition of extremism

  • The new definition of extremism was revealed earlier today
  • Do you think this could affect free speech? Join in the debate in the comments section below.

Well Michael Gove today laid out a new definition of what is extremism.

In the House of Commons earlier on today he said: "The proposed definition will hold that extremism is the promotion or advancement of an ideology based on violence, hatred or intolerance that aims to negate or destroy fundamental rights and freedoms of others, or undermine, overturn or replace the UK's system of liberal parliamentary democracy and democratic rights, or intentionally create a permissive environment for others to achieve these results."

Well, I understand you know, that organisations, whether they're extreme right or Islamist, that are receiving government money, shouldn't receive government money if they're spreading hatred and extremism.

That is the one part of this new definition that I agree with but my concern is could this be open to abuse?

Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage shared his views on the new definition

GB News

When I think about it, if you attempt to undermine, overturn or replace the UK system of liberal parliamentary democracy, well, you could be branded an extremist.

And whilst that wouldn't make you a criminal, because this will not go into law that the police are going to enforce, it would take you out of public life.

I was elected 25 years ago to the European Parliament on a ticket that said we should leave the European Union.

My first day there, Sir Stephen Wall, he was the representative for the Foreign Office in the European Union, came to my office, sat with the three of us from UKIP that had been elected and said: "Gentlemen, what are your intentions?"


Michael Gove announced the new definition


It was clear he thought we were an extremist terrorist group. And that's the worry with all of this.

Even if you create a permissive environment for others to achieve the result of undermining democracy or fundamental rights, that could mean that you perhaps couldn't debate many issues on GB News if some took those arguments and went too far with them.

So my concern with all of this is that I think it has the potential to be abused by governments that want to shut down debate on issues that they don't like. I think it is.

We were told the new definition would be less woolly.

Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage thought it could impact free speech

GB News

From what I can see, it's completely and utterly open-ended.

I'm sure that everybody on all sides of the political debate will argue that they're being victimised.

I think this is open to a shutting down of free speech, maybe not by this government, but who knows what may come in the course of the following years.

So tell me what you think. Is it open to abuse?

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