THE ARGUMENT FROM TRUTH AS A BASIS FOR LEGISLATION CONCERNING FREEDOM OF SPEECH
University of Turku
Abstract. In recent discussion on free speech the so-called argument from truth has been evaluated from various critical perspectives. In this paper I would like to comment on some of the recent contributions. I shall argue that it is not necessarily a problem for the argument from truth that it works into two directions in the sense that it can justify both the freedom of speech and its limitations. I shall also try to show that “monistic” theories of free speech that emphasize only one value as a criterion in free speech legislation, need not be impractical, even though it is granted that our interest both in freedom of speech and its limitations are based on various values such as autonomy, democracy, diversity and truth. Finally, I shall argue that certain counter-examples that first come to mind do not necessarily show that the argument from truth is false.