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Right. Now, all of you are going to listen to what I have to say and I

want none of your opinions.

Imagine if your teachers told you this every morning. How would

you feel? Good morning Year 8 and teachers; today I’ll be talking

about freedom of speech. First, I’ll start off by talking about what

freedom of speech is, then I’ll share some stories, we’ll discuss how

we are constantly being influenced in Australia, and finally I’ll show

you all how you can use this freedom of speech.

So first of all, what is freedom of speech? Freedom of speech is the

right to express your own ideas and opinions without anyone

interfering or punishing you for it. There is a difference between

freedom of speech and just being plain rude of course.

Lets move onto those stories now. I’m going to take you all back

in time and introduce you to a man named Socrates. Socrates was a

very interesting man indeed. He would always ask question when

someone brought forward their idea. He would always ask, how did

you come up with that? When did you think of this? Does this

makes sense with that? And because he asked such questions, the

people of Athens sent him to jail. They told him either to kill himself

or leave Athens. Socrates chose to kill himself because without that

freedom of speech, he felt there was no point in living.

Now, lets fast-forward the clock to the present day. I’m sure all of

you are aware of the sports brand


. Well, as popular and trendy

as their merchandise may be, the story behind how their products

are made is not so awesome. Children in Pakistan and a few other

countries are forced day and night to make all these products in

terrible conditions – just for us to use. The magazine



brave enough to use their freedom of speech to say that what


was doing was not right, but in fact child labour and should not be

tolerated just because


is a big company. If it wasn’t for the



, those children would still be working tirelessly today.

So, those were some stories from around the world. And here is

my personal story. In Vietnam, there was a dictatorship, meaning

the schooling wasn’t great nor was the housing. My grandparents

had strong beliefs against the dictatorship so they decided to move

to Australia. They used their freedom of speech to stay true to their

beliefs. If they hadn’t done so then I wouldn’t be alive, let alone

talking to you all right now.

So you think you have freedom of speech in Australia? Think

Freedom Of


Mira Menyen

Orator of the Year