RS5 Campaign Director, Simon Calvert, spoke to LBC Radio about removing the word ‘insulting’ from Section 5 of the Public Order Act.
Mr Calvert said: “Most people are amazed when you tell them that British law outlaws insults because we all recognise that insults is such a vague and subjective term”.
He said: “Of course insults aren’t nice, we don’t want to see more of them but we don’t want to see them criminalised either, because one man’s insult is another man’s opinion. And there are all sorts of ludicrous cases where this section 5 insult law has been used to clamp down on free speech”.
He added: “Whether it’s street preachers preaching against what they view as immorality, whether it’s gay rights campaigners campaigning against the oppression of gay people, whether it’s atheists expressing pretty strident views against religion, these are all matters of opinion, they are matters of principle, important issues that people should be free to debate robustly.
“And the fact that there’s a law on our statute books which police and prosecutors are able to reach for to shut down this kind of debate is actually very serious. So there’s a very, very wide range of people who think that law needs reforming.”