Roz Scott

Sussex stopped, shocked, after the massacre of journalists who used humour to challenge terrorism.

Solidarity demonstrations took place across Europe including Lewes and Brighton following the massacre of 12 people including journsalits and police officers in Paris.

Charlie Hebdo had built up a reputation for satirical controversy and their journalists paid the ultimate price.

The message from politicians and journalists across the world is defiant – democracies will not be intimidated by terrorists.

Protesters called for free speech to be protected and challenged governments who react by introducing draconian new laws and judicial and police powers.

The attacks are believed to have been revenge against the provocative satire in the cartoons about Prophet Mohammed.

Stephane Charbonnier, editor of Charlie Hebdo, refused to censor his work despite warnings and pleas from the French Government who closed embassies abroad in fear of reprisals. No one is immune from satire, with the Pope, the President and the Prophet all facing the power of his pen, with all religions targets.

Mr Charbonnier, 47, has faced death threats and was living under police protection.

The problem is that most of us in the West live without fear because we do not challenge, question and expose injustice, and face no personal cost. We are not Charlie, we compromise and cower. As citizens in Brighton, Hove and across the United Kingdom we must continue the vigil to protect free speech with courage. This will make Mr Charbonnier and those who remain at Charlie Hebdo proud.

The legacy must continue by courage not cowardice.

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