its despicable that so many of the europeans who rallied in #jesuischarlie will have also supported their local hate speech laws, holocaust denial speech laws, as well as agreeing with the french police for arresting an islamic comedian for his facebook post on the charlie hebdo shooting.
in the past few days, I thought this was a free speech issue. and it is. terrorism cannot be allowed to limit free speech. But a second idea comes to mind: France has hate speech laws. And they’ve made arrests based on those laws. So let me expand upon the first sentiment: NOTHING can be allowed to limit free speech.
If these french were serious about their freedom, they should start by eliminating the hate speech laws, laws that persecute people for opinion.
I hate to say this, but seems like in the matters of free speech, USA might be #1. There’s a lot of things society has agreed are wrong, but the LAW is not supposed to prosecute you for mere opinion expression.
Shit needs to be get togethered, Otherwise, #jesuischarlie will have only been less than noble war propoganda in the battle of racial tensions – “we will defend our right to insult you, but we will also attack your right to insult us.” that ain’t right.
Short answer: yes. It’s forbidden in France to engage in “hate speech,” which includes anti-Semitic remarks. Denial of the Holocaust is a crime across much of Europe, including France and Germany. This week the odious French comedian Dieudonné was arrested for saying that he felt not like Charlie Hebdo, but like “Charlie Coulibaly,” a reference to jihadist gunman Amédy Coulibaly who killed four people in a kosher grocery store. Dieudonné is a notorious anti-Semite, who performs a kind of Nazi salute during his performances and whose shows have been banned by the French government.
Should he have been arrested or censored? Nope. It’s hypocritical to prohibit making fun of some religionists but allowing some (as did Charlie Hebdo) to make fun of others. Yes, anti-Semitism, which is a criticism not of Judaism but of Jews, differs from simple criticism of Islam (the goal of Charlie Hebdo’s cartoons), but too bad. It’s too hard to…
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