Austin Ramzy, a China reporter for the New York Times , relocated to Taiwan in early 2014 after failing to receive his accreditation and visa. New York Times reporter Chris Buckley was reported to have been expelled in early January 2013— an incident China’s foreign ministry said was a visa application suspension due to improper credentials. China observers were also notably shaken by the 2013 suspension of Bloomberg’s former China correspondent, Michael Forsythe, after Bloomberg journalists accused the news agency of withholding investigative articles for fear of reprisal from Chinese authorities.
It was in this climate that Kay, The Walrus editor, appeared on CBC TV Saturday afternoon with Jesse Wente, an Ojibwe CBC columnist and indigenous activist. Kay reiterated his defence of free speech, arguing that there was a legitimate debate to be had around where a marginalized minority’s right to own and protect its identity ends and where artistic freedom begins. Wente insisted that the time for polite conversation and debate was over and that arguments around free speech were a distraction from the unresolved cataclysms of daily indigenous life.