THE absolutist wrongthink campaign rolls remorselessly on in Wales.
Western Mail journalist Martin Shipton is the latest free speech casualty after Literature Wales removed him from their Wales Book of the Year judging panel.
Shipton’s crime was to question whether a massed Black Lives Matter protest outside Cardiff Castle was wise in view of current lockdown rules in Wales.
He also had the temerity to question whether American protests following one single event 4,000 miles away, really merited such equivalent protests here in Wales.
Mr Shipton received a deluge of abuse on Twitter for expressing his views, and eventually responded with an ill-judged tweet of his own, which he now probably regrets.
Literature Wales then decided to terminate his post on the judging panel, without allowing him any opportunity to defend himself.
It’s very problematical when a charity such as Literature Wales, which exists on public money, can take such an instant decision swayed by the outrage mob on Twitter.
At the very least, they should have held their nerve and allowed Mr Shipton to present his case before coming to any judgement on the matter.
Appeasing the outrage mob in such a craven fashion will only fuel this type of absolutist thinking even more.
It seems a particular quirk of history that a mindset traditionally associated with the right (suppression of free speech) has now been appropriated so completely by the Left.
With this now being increasingly used as a cudgel to shame, intimidate and humiliate individuals who dare challenge their narrative. .
No wonder that more and more people are now browbeaten into a kind of passive acceptance that expressing any alternative views are nowadays just not worth it.
Not having a free exchange of views, honestly held on different subjects is a very unhealthy situation for any nation.
This can’t be allowed to continue, and there has to be a pushback against this mob mentality to suppress free speech.
A future Independent Wales needs independence of thought above all.