(UPDATE: Lauren Southern's coverage of this case is ongoing. VISIT TwitterFreedom.com for the latest interviews and analysis regarding this historic legal victory, plus informative backgrounder videos.)
After a legal battle that dragged on for three years , Gregory Alan Elliott has been found not guilty.
In 2012, Elliott was charged with criminal harassment after arguing with feminist activists on Twitter. He’s suffered through a tortuous court case that has cost him nearly one hundred thousand dollars.
Anyone following this case knows that Greg is only guilty of the crime of wrongthink. He was arrested for critically engaging with people who disagreed with him. It wasn’t any different from what people do on social media platforms every day.
Greg’s tweets were far milder than some of the vile garbage I’ve seen come through my notifications. He never threatened anyone, and he never gave anyone reason to fear for their safety.
All he did was argue with people that hated him so much they demanded he be shut down.
I don’t believe Stephanie Guthrie or her cronies felt victimized for a second. We’re talking about people who have posted images of themselves drinking from mugs with “male tears” written on them, after all.
They wanted Elliott to pay for having challenged them, nothing more.
The charges in Elliott’s protracted legal case have prohibited him from using the Internet, forced him to quit his job, and left him bankrupt.
The last three years of Greg’s life have been hell, and he won’t ever get them back.
Despite all this, I am joyful, Greg is joyful, and his sons are joyful. Free speech has won the day, and Greg won’t have to deal with the prospect of months of jail time or heavy fines.
People opposed to speech rights won’t get the satisfaction of seeing Greg behind bars.
Most importantly, legal precedent has been established to defend free expression.
Canada is infamous for its ineffectual provisions for freedom of speech. Establishing the legal default to favour allowing offensive speech is a boon for speech rights in Canada.
A new chapter of Greg’s life starts now. He’ll be able to return to some semblance of his prior life, free of the burden of ongoing criminal proceedings. He’ll be able to return to work, and continue making the artwork for which he is renowned.
It’ll be a rocky road, but he has a lot of people on his side.
I hope you’ll be one of those people. Greg still has legal fees to pay and is hoping to get back to designing and doing his artwork.
If you can, please contribute to the fundraiser Greg’s son Clayton has set up. Every bit of support helps.
If defending speech is wrong, I don’t want to be right.
Let’s keep pushing, and continue fighting for speech rights in Canada.
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