can be said because of the harm and offense that unlimited speech can cause, (I will discuss this. One reason for thinking that speech is not special simpiciter is that some of these forms of communication are more important than others and hence require different levels of protection. This is not to say that slippage cannot occur. If liberty of expression is not highly valued, as has often been the case, there is no problem; freedom of expression is simply curtailed in favor of other values. If those arguing that pornography causes harm are right, we should expect to see a large increase in physical abuse against women and a hefty decrease in their civil rights, employment in the professions, and positions in higher education. And Mill does mean everyone: If all mankind minus one were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person than he, if he had the power, would be justified. In this case the offense is more profound: simply knowing that such material exists is enough to deeply offend many people.
Got a writing question? For example, one could expect to be publicly condemned if one made racist comments during a public lecture at a university. Overall, Mill's arguments about ostracism and disapprobation seem to provide little protection for the individual who may have spoken in a non-harmful manner but who has nevertheless offended the sensibilities of the masses. Further questions need to be answered before a ban is justified. Almost all places in which we interact are governed by underlying values and speech will have to fit in with these ideals: regulation of free speech is a defining feature of everyday life (Fish, 1994,129).
Pornogrpahy and Free Speech