UPDATE: IFPS-Canada, May 03/11: SHAME ON DENMARK! Lars Hedegaard found guilty of hate speech
The President of the International Free Press Society Lars Hedegaard was acquitted of a hate speech charge in a Danish court earlier today that was brought against him for the ‘crime’ of offending Muslims (references below).
In political prosecutions (and we have some experience in this area) such as that against Lars Hedegaard the goal is not really to punish the ‘offender’ – it is to gain a conviction (at all costs) in order to justify the persecution and to intimidate the persecuted into silence along with those who might choose to emulate him/her.
While the acquittal of Lars Hedegaard is certainly very good news, it is important to note that the only reason he was acquitted is because the judge found, as stated by Hedegaard afterwards, “that my supposedly offensive comments on the violations against little Muslim girls were not intended for public dissemination” (my emphasis). In other words, he was acquitted on a technicality and not because a Danish court refused to uphold an un-democratic thought-crime law written by neo-Nazis cloaked in ‘anti-racist’ clothes.
This ruling means – at best – that Danes are probably going to be allowed to express opinions that others might find offensive so long as they do so in private. As Hedegaard points out, however, the prosecutor knew of the circumstances (ie. that the comments were not intended for public consumption) for a year, but pursued the charge nevertheless. Clearly, Danish neo-fascists are determined to stamp out free speech even in the privacy of Danish homes now that they have succeeded in repressing public dissent and discussion, so it is highly unlikely they will give up their campaign of truth suppression. After all, if it is possible to write a law against public insults, those made privately can also be made illegal with the stroke of a pen and then gleefully enforced by collaborators and cowards and those who are simply ‘following orders.’
Perhaps in today’s Denmark, the confirmation by a court that one is ‘permitted’ to express unpopular opinions behind closed doors may be cause for celebration. If so then I suppose one could call this a victory of sorts, but to do so merely highlights the dark depths to which Denmark has sunk at the hands of the neo-fascists.
From my perspective here in Canada, however, where a veritable army of pseudo-leftist neo-fascists and dhimmi-police have been spectacularly unsuccessful in silencing our exposure and opposition to aboriginal extremism and the state’s appeasement of it via heavy-handed tactics that included a hate crime investigation against Gary McHale (as testified to by former OPP Commissioner Julian Fantino) and a criminal prosecution against him that ended after two senior officers were charged with Obstructing Justice, the only real winner in Denmark today was Lars Hedegaard. For this I am very happy indeed as he is a good man who has done his best to give voices to those who have been persecuted.
My joy, however, at the prosecution’s failure to get a conviction they so desperately sought does not temper my alarm at the fact that free speech and democracy in that once-Nazi-occupied country is dead or dying fast, nor does it change my opinion that absolutely nothing will save it but the immediate implementation of an all out civil rights struggle against the government as outlined in this recent statement of support for Hedegaard by Gary McHale and me:
- IFPS-Canada, Gary McHale & Mark Vandermaas, Jan 24/11: Dr. King’s ‘Letter from Birmingham Jail’ vs. Denmark’s thought crime prosecutions: a blueprint for victory over appeasement of Islamic extremism
- IFPS-Canada, May 03/11: SHAME ON DENMARK! Lars Hedegaard found guilty of hate speech
- IFPS-Canada, Jan 31/11: “Fate of freedom of speech in Europe is being determined now” – Danish activist (incl. pre-verdict video interview w/Hedegaard)
- IFPS-Canada, Jan 31/11: Statement by Lars Hedegaard
- IFPS-Canada, Jan 25/11: Awaiting the Verdict (English translation of Lars Hedegaard’s statement to Danish Court of Frederiksberg, Jan 24/11 )
- IFPS-Canada, Jan 19/10: Massive international support for Lars Hedegaard
- VoiceofCanada, Jan 27/11: McHale, Vandermaas stmt re confronting Danish thought crime prosecutions feature on websites of International Free Press Society
- VoiceofCanada, Jan 25/11: Dr. King’s ‘Letter from Birmingham Jail’ vs. Denmark’s thought crime prosecutions: a blueprint for victory over appeasement of Islamic extremism (also includes quotes from Lars Hedegaard’s stmt during his trial)
In my next post I will attempt to answer the question of what are the alternatives, if any, to ‘non-violent direct action’ for European free speech advocates.
Mark Vandermaas, Editor