However, the right keeps telling me that I’m not respecting DIVERSITY OF THOUGHT and that the test of freedom of speech is not how we tolerate ideas we approve of but how we tolerate ideas we find obnoxious or reprehensible. I’m also told that we need to respect “both sides” of a debate even when one of those sides if offering violence, advocating genocide or treating the humanity of others as some kind of special favour.

So here’s an idea. Why not put the issue of whether headbutting Tony Abbott is OK to the Australian people? Naturally, I’d vote no – we shouldn’t headbutt Tony Abbott. The government could spend several millions of dollars on a shonky survey and put the question of whether Tony Abbott should get the same basic rights as everybody to a vote – because apparently, that’s how rights work in Australia.

Camestros Felapton on the Australian way.

Given Australia has already had a “respectful debate” on whether or not it’s offensive to call Tony Abbott “A C∀N’T” (a judge ruled it is not), I think it’s only fair that we have another one on whether it’s okay to headbutt Tony Abbott every time he appears in public.

I mean, obviously I will vote no–people could seriously injure themselves headbutting Tony Abbott, which would cause unnecessary strain on our healthcare system–but as we all know it’s important to let all sides of a debate have their say. On television, for example, and in parliament, and in our national broadsheet papers. We wouldn’t want anyone’s freedom of speech impacted, for example, by legally mandating that it’s not appropriate to headbutt Tony Abbott. And I may be an atheist, but I think it’s important for religious organisations who hold sacred beliefs regarding headbutting Tony Abbott to express their concerns about a world in which they could not exercise their religious freedom to headbutt Tony Abbott. I mean, what if someone who supports headbutting Tony Abbott is forced to bake a cake for an anti-Tony-Abbott-headbutting ceremony? What then? Does Tony Abbott’s so-called “right” not to be subjected to violence every time he appears in public outweigh the concerns of headbutting traditionalist cake makers the country over?

Truly this is a question that only a national postal survey could decide.

(Also see.)