Every citizen has a moral duty to defend freedom of speech, and every academic has a duty to defend freedom of speech as the foundational freedom of the academy. Odd and idiosyncratic attacks on freedom of speech in the twenty-first century become widespread, even global, with a speed that is only partly explained by reference to the Internet or social media. In contemporary therapeutic culture, restrictions on freedom of speech appear more kindly but are more controlling and authoritarian. What is curious is that writers on academic freedom ignore or perhaps play down the impact of the therapeutic culture which dominates wider society and the university. Academics who have a professional approach to academic freedom and see it as 'just a job' will find themselves easy targets for criticism and complaints for challenging ill-thought-out and illogical ideas if their challenge is upsetting.