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LETTER: Suppression of free speech on P.E.I.

I was shocked and disappointed to learn that Jamie Larkin, someone who has contributed to community engagement in P.E.I. for a number of years, was given a gag order by the Green Party last weekend.

Jamie has been a leading voice for inclusion and engagement in politics, who contributed his efforts along with other like-minded individuals who want to make P.E.I. a better place for everyone.

In the recent Charlottetown race to elect a mayor, Jamie was a voice for those who are seeking affordable housing, and he did this without insulting or belittling anyone along the way.

With the recent announcement of a female candidate for the leadership of the Progressive Conservative Party of P.E.I., Jamie commented on social media that he wanted people to support someone whom he believed to be a good choice for leader of the party.

The Green Party wasted no time in trying to silence Jamie's voice.

Apparently the Green's have a bylaw in their party that advises their members not to express support for another party without official Green Party approval. It appears that this bylaw is applied without consideration of how good the intentions of the members are in expressing their opinions.

After applying the gag to Jamie, the Green Party advised that they have this policy because the Liberals and Conservative Parties both have similar bylaws.

It is hypocritical for the Green Party, who boast that they do politics differently than the other parties, to mimic the policy of the parties they strongly oppose.

Intelligent people do not need permission from a party central with thought police to express their views.

I support the right of every person to participate in the political process, because good government only comes when everyone has a voice.

Not everyone thinks alike, but they still have the right to express their opinions without fear of being suppressed. The right to free speech and association is enshrined in the Canadian Constitution by the Bill of Rights and Freedoms.

It seems difficult to believe that anyone would want to dispute this fact.

One has to ask the question "Who do Peter Bevan Baker and the Green Party believe they are representing?"

Orville Lewis,
Woodstock

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