Friday, November 4, 2016

Europe's New Blasphemy Courts

Gatestone Institute
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Europe's New Blasphemy Courts

by Douglas Murray  •  November 4, 2016 at 5:00 am
  • Europe is currently seeing the reintroduction of blasphemy laws through both the front and back doors, initiated in a country which once prided itself on being among the first in the world to throw off clerical intrusion into politics.
  • By prosecuting Wilders, the courts in Holland are effectively ruling that there is only one correct answer to the question Wilders asked. They are saying that if someone asks you whether you would like more Moroccans or fewer, people must always answer "more," or he will be committing a crime.
  • At no point would it occur to me that anyone saying he did not want an endless flow of, say, British people coming into the Netherlands should be prosecuted. Nor would he be.
  • The long-term implications for Dutch democracy of criminalising a majority opinion are catastrophic. But the trial of Wilders is also a nakedly political move.
  • The Dutch courts are behaving like a religious court. They are trying to regulate public expression and opinion when it comes to the followers of one religion. In so doing they obviously aspire to keep the peace in the short term, but they cannot possibly realise what trouble they are storing up for our future.
Four-time Olympic medal-winner Louis Smith (right), a British gymnast, was banned from sport for two months by the British Gymnastics association because the Sun newspaper published a video from his phone, showing his friend taking a rug off a wall and doing an imitation of Islamic prayer rituals. (Images source: The Sun video screenshots)
Europe is currently seeing the reintroduction of blasphemy laws through both the front and back doors. In Britain, the gymnast Louis Smith has just been suspended for two months by British Gymnastics. This 27-year old sportsman's career has been put on hold, and potentially ruined, not because of anything to do with athletics but because of something to do with Islam.

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