Wednesday was a bleak day for Australian universities, for freedom of speech and for democracy. On that day, the management of La Trobe University suspended from work Roz Ward, NTEU member and Safe Schools advocate, on serious misconduct charges. Her alleged offence? That she wrote, in a private Facebook post, that it would be good if the “racist” Australian flag flying over Parliament were one day to be replaced by the red flag. It is time for decent people, who believe in reasoned argument, freedom of speech, intellectual freedom and democracy to stand up against the deeply anti-democratic bullying of the Australian right, especially its media mouthpieces.