On December 9, for the first time in Dutch history, a court criminalized freedom of expression: The truly heroic Dutch Member of Parliament, Geert Wilders, was found guilty of the "crime" of "hate speech."
The death sentence against Salman Rushdie in 1989 by Iran's supreme leader looked unreal. The West did not take it seriously. Since then, however, this fatwa has been assimilated to such an extent that today's threats to free speech come from ourselves. It is now the West that put on trial writers and journalists.
The Red Brigades, the Communist terror group which devastated Italy in the 1970s, coined a slogan: "Strike one to educate one hundred." If you target one, you get collective intimidation. This is exactly the effect of these political trials about Islam.
"Hate speech" has become a political weapon to dispatch whoever may not agree with you. It is not the right of a democracy to quibble about the content of articles or cartoons. In the West, we paid a high price for the freedom to write them and and read them it. It is not up to those who govern to grant the right of thought and speech.
In Europe now, the same iron curtain as in the Soviet era is descending.
After the Second World War and the horrors of Nazism and Stalinism, a central tenet of Western democracies has been that you can put people on trial, but not ideas and opinions. Europe is now allowing dangerous "human rights" groups and Islamists to use tribunals to restrict the borders of our freedom of expression, exactly as in Soviet show trials. "Militant anti-racism will be for the 21st century what communism was for the 20th century," the prominent French philosopher, Alain Finkielkraut has predicted.
A year ago, Christoph Biró, a respected columnist and editor of the largest Austrian newspaper, Kronen Zeitung, wrote an article blaming "young men, testosterone-fuelled Syrians, who carry out extremely aggressive sexual attacks" (even before mass the sexual assaults of New Year's Eve in Cologne, Hamburg and other cities). The article sparked much controversy, and it received a large number of complaints and protests. Biró needed four weeks off work because of these attacks and later (under pressure) admitted that he had "lost a sense of proportion". Prosecutors in Graz recently charged Biró with "hate speech" after a complaint by a so-called human rights organization, SOS Mitmensch. The case will be decided in court.
Journalists, novelists and intellectuals throughout Europe are now told to raise their right hand before a judge and swear to tell the truth and nothing but the truth -- as if that were not what they were doing all along and for what they are now being prosecuted. It is an alarming but very common sight today, where "hate speech" has become a political weapon to dispatch whoever may not agree with you.
After the Second World War and the horrors of Nazism and Stalinism, a central tenet of Western democracies has been that you can put people on trial, but not ideas and opinions. Europe is now allowing dangerous "human rights" groups and Islamists to use tribunals to restrict the borders of our freedom of expression, exactly as in Soviet show trials.
It would seem that the whole entire world is coming 'un-glued' from it's roots . . .
Has the entire World become some 'third-world septic tank'????
AMEN to that Sir Harry Rainey ll
AMEN TO THAT!!!!
We need to be careful of denigrating the peoples of Europe for the mistakes they have made in how they've handled the influx of Muslim 'refugees'. We here in the United States are going down the same path if we do not correct the policies we have permitted during the Obama administration.
Just because we elected a President and Vice President (and a few more members in each chamber of Congress) that are inclined to change this; there are still many existing establishment politicians that will resist the changes needed to correct this problem.
We need to make it clear to our representatives they we are watching their actions and they will be held responsible for each and every vote they cast on our behalf.
If we learned nothing else from the past three elections, we should have learned that 'the Silent Majority' dares not remain silent any longer. We must make our voices heard and our message clear to those who are selected to represent us.
here in the united states we have a double standard....Obama. reid, Pelosi, the lap-dogs in the media, Hollywood, black lives matter and Hillary can get away with hate speech....there may be some minor complaints..but it will never go any further than that. on the other hand those on the right have limitations...whereby almost everything they think and say is not only hate speech.....but it is always racist, sexist and un-American.....if you are a Christian that refuses to serve gays for religious reasons you will have the rath of liberal hell down on you....if you are a muslim that refuses to serve a gay couple...you will be honored at obamas functions...honored by the left...and somehow the right wing will somehow be blamed....
Well read this I HATE MUSLIMS ILLEGAL MEXICANS AND COMMUNIST now how do you think I feel toward Obama the Muslime half breed communist bastard I hate the sorry POS and would like to see him shot dead,now is that hate speech or what. It is not that is my opinion of the slime slithering around in OUR country
His popularity rose after the conviction!
I just won't tour Europe. That's all.