There are many countries in the world where what you say gets you into deep trouble with those in authority.
This country, thankfully is not one of them.
Or is it becoming so?
This morning’s news that a teenage boy has been arrested by police in Dorset for sending a nasty tweet message to diver Tom Daley – diving partner of Southampton athlete Peter Waterfield – is disturbing.
Yes, the so-called ‘troll’ had a nasty streak and what he said – claiming Daley by coming fourth on the diving board yesterday had let down his father who died of cancer last year – was awful stuff.
But does this really warrant a knock on the door from the plod?
I think not.
This was playground stuff. Nasty, childish, hurtful: but not the stuff of arrests.
In Moscow at the moment a group of women punk rock stars are facing trail for singing songs attacking President Putin. They called the leader of Russia some fairly nasty things.
Their trail has been condemned by the West as an attack on liberty and free speech.