In less that two weeks in this Spring of 2007, a sizable portion of what's left of humanity not already at the mercy of their governments' limits on thought and speech now find themselves possibly subject to new and draconian legislation preventing speech that someone may claim as 'hateful'.
EU AGREES BREAKTHROUGH HATE-CRIME LAW
20.04.2007 - 09:23 CET | By Renata Goldirova
EUOBSERVER / BRUSSELS –
After six years of political wrangling, the European Union has agreed to make incitement to racism and xenophobia a crime across the 27-nation bloc, setting a jail sentence of at least one to three years. But the text avoids controversial terms such as the Holocaust and crimes under the Stalin regime.
The deal agreed by justice ministers on Thursday (19 April) "proves that the EU now has moral responsibility and not only on the economy" EU home affairs commissioner Franco Frattini said.
"There is no safe haven for racist violence, anti-Semitism or people inciting to xenophobic hatred," he added, underlining the text agreed by ministers is "a right balance between fully respecting freedom of speech and punishing any criminal actions, not ideas."
Under the new law, offenders will face up to three years in jail for "public incitement to violence or hatred, directed against a group of persons or a member of such a group defined by reference to race, colour, religion, descent or national or ethnic origin."
The same rules will apply to people "publicly condoning, denying, or grossly trivialising crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes," but only those recognised under statutes of the International Criminal Court.
According to German justice minister Brigitte Zypries, speaking on behalf of Berlin's six-month EU presidency, the EU-wide sentencing framework is "an important political signal...especially to the young generation."
However, the wording has been carefully chosen to make it acceptable to the UK, Ireland and the Scandinavian countries, who were particularly worried about the scope of freedom of speech.
Denial of the Holocaust is allowed under British freedom of speech rules, unless it specifically incites racial hatred.
On the other hand, the three Baltic countries and Poland and Slovenia - all carrying the burden of a communist past - gave up their demand that crimes under the Stalin regime in the former Soviet Union also fall under the bill's scope.
In exchange, a declaration saying the EU will organise high profile public debates on totalitarian regimes accompanies the new law. "This is our political response to those concerns," Mr Frattini said.
So Europeans will be even less able to speak out at the Islamification of Europe for fear of one to three years jail time and the denial of their precious entitlements.
Read some of the actual language:
Sanctions for legal persons
1. Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that a legal person held liable pursuant to Article 5(1) is punishable by effective, proportionate and dissuasive sanctions, which shall include criminal or non-criminal fines and may include other sanctions, such as:
(a) exclusion from entitlement to public benefits or aid;
(b) temporary or permanent disqualification from the practice of commercial activities;
(c) placing under judicial supervision;
(d) a judicial winding-up order.
2. Member States shall take the necessary measures to ensure that a legal person held liable pursuant to Article 5(2) is punishable by effective, proportionate and dissuasive sanctions or measures.
The beauty of this next part is that it even excludes the possibility to post a blog on the subject on a servor outside the EU. Even better, an American that posts something 'objectionable' on a servor in the EU can be subject to these laws, as soon as he deplanes in the EU.
1. Each Member State shall take the necessary measures to establish its jurisdiction with regard to the conduct referred to in Articles 1 and 2 where the conduct has been committed:
(a) in whole or in part within its territory; or
(b) by one of its nationals; or
(c) for the benefit of a legal person that has its head office in the territory of that Member State.
2. When establishing jurisdiction in accordance with paragraph 1(a), each Member State shall take the necessary measures to ensure that its jurisdiction extends to cases where the conduct is committed through an information system and:
(a) the offender commits the conduct when physically present in its territory, whether or not the conduct involves material hosted on an information system in its territory;
(b) the conduct involves material hosted on an information system in its territory, whether or not the offender commits the conduct when physically present in its territory.
4. A Member State may decide not to apply, or to apply only in specific cases or circumstances, the jurisdiction rule set out in paragraphs 1(b) and (c).
AND HERE AT HOME
our fearless House Dems pass a resolution--THEY'RE RESOLVED, I SAY!--to further burden the Federal Justice system with a plethora, a surfeit, A VERITABLE CORNUCOPIA of (Daffy Duck voice on) DETHPICKABLE hate crimeth (or when a simple 1st degree murder is MORE than just 1st degree murder).
House Votes to Expand Hate-Crime Protection
By DAVID STOUT
Published: May 4, 2007
WASHINGTON, May 3 — The House of Representatives voted on Thursday to extend hate-crime protection to people who are victimized because of their sexuality. But the most immediate effect may be to set up another veto showdown between Democrats and President Bush.
By 237 to 180, the House voted to cover crimes spurred by a victim’s “gender, sexual orientation, gender identity” or disability under the hate-crime designation, which currently applies to people who are attacked because of their race, religion, color or national origin.
“The bill is passed,” Representative Barney Frank, a Massachusetts Democrat who is gay, announced to applause, most of it from Democrats.
Companion legislation is moving through the Senate. But even assuming that a bill emerges from the full Congress, it will face a veto by President Bush on the grounds that it is “unnecessary and constitutionally questionable,” the White House said. The vote to approve the bill did not come close to the two-thirds needed to override a veto.
The bill approved by the House, worded to cover people who are transsexual and transgender, would make it easier for federal authorities to take part in hate-crime investigations if local investigators are unable or unwilling to pursue them. The current hate-crime law protects people only while they are engaged in a federally protected activity, like voting or going to school, but the bill would lower the barriers.
Debate over the legislation has been spirited, and while some of it has addressed whether the bill is necessary, the arguments in the House chamber and beyond have been colored by issues of conscience and personal morality.
“This is a historic day that moves all Americans closer to safety from the scourge of hate violence,” said Joe Solmonese, president of the Human Rights Campaign, a major backer of the legislation.
Judy Shepard, whose son Matthew was murdered in an anti-gay hate crime in Wyoming in 1998, said in a statement, “I am personally grateful to the United States House for recognizing the grave reality of hate crimes in America.”
Representative Steny H. Hoyer, Democrat of Maryland and the majority leader, said the House vote represented “a statement of what America is, a society that understands that we accept differences.”
But Representative John A. Boehner, Republican of Ohio and the minority leader, said the bill made no sense: “We’re going to put into place a federal law that says that not only will we punish you for the crime that you actually commit, the physical crime that you commit, but we’re also going to charge you with a crime if we think that you were thinking bad things about this person before you committed the crime.”
And Representative Mike Pence, Republican of Indiana, called the bill “unnecessary and bad public policy.” While he finds racism and sexism “abhorrent,” Mr. Pence said, the bill’s language is so broad that it could encroach on free speech.
Representative John Conyers Jr., Democrat of Michigan, disagreed and said the bill reaffirmed rights of free speech. Mr. Conyers, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, sponsored the measure, along with Representative Mark Steven Kirk, Republican of Illinois.
James C. Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, told his radio listeners that the bill’s real purpose was “to muzzle people of faith who dare to express their moral and biblical concerns about homosexuality,” according to The Associated Press.
But Senator Edward M. Kennedy, Democrat of Massachusetts and a supporter of the Senate legislation, said he was pleased that the House had rejected the Bush administration’s “misguided attempt” to block the bill. “It’s long past time for Congress to do more to prevent hate crimes and insist that they be fully prosecuted when they occur,” Mr. Kennedy said.
The legislation restated punishments already enacted, up to life in prison for the most serious crimes.
The White House said the administration favored stiff penalties for violent crime, “including crime based on personal characteristics, such as race, color, religion or national origin.” But it asserted that the bill was redundant to state and local laws, and of dubious constitutionality. If it reaches the president, “his senior advisers would recommend that he veto the bill,” the White House said.
Twenty-five Republicans joined 212 Democrats in voting for the bill. Fourteen Democrats joined 166 Republicans in opposing it.
WHAT NEXTHT?, YOU MIGHT ATHK.
(Although lisping is often a stereotype of homosexuals, this is in tribute to the Dafster, whom we all know was never, ever gay.)
Weather Channel Climate Expert Calls for Decertifying Global Warming Skeptics
January 17, 2007
Posted by Marc Morano 202-224-5762 firstname.lastname@example.org (8:50pm ET)
The Weather Channel’s most prominent climatologist is advocating that broadcast meteorologists be stripped of their scientific certification if they express skepticism about predictions of manmade catastrophic global warming. This latest call to silence skeptics follows a year (2006) in which skeptics were compared to "Holocaust Deniers" and Nuremberg-style war crimes trials were advocated by several climate alarmists.
The Weather Channel’s (TWC) Heidi Cullen, who hosts the weekly global warming program "The Climate Code," is advocating that the American Meteorological Society (AMS) revoke their "Seal of Approval" for any television weatherman who expresses skepticism that human activity is creating a climate catastrophe.
"If a meteorologist can't speak to the fundamental science of climate change, then maybe the AMS shouldn't give them a Seal of Approval. Clearly, the AMS doesn't agree that global warming can be blamed on cyclical weather patterns," Cullen wrote in her December 21 weblog on the Weather Channel Website.
Calling all Rednecks...Calling all Rednecks...
Let's see if we can compile a stupendous list--make that thtupendouth litht--of these encroachments on free thought and free speech. It could be one awesome thread.