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May 16, 2006

Censorship in Flanders

This afternoon I was shocked to hear on the radio that the 'Inquisition for fighting equal opportunity' (not their real name, but it should be) had managed to get an article removed from 'The Brussels Journal'.  The entry was titled 'Geef ons Wapens' (give us weapons) and appeared on may 21st 2006. 

Today the article is no longer on-line.  Instead we read following text (translated from Dutch):

'This text was removed at the demand of the Center for Equality of Opportunity and Combatting Racism which let us know through certified mail on may 10th that our "statements form an incitement to violence against a group based on their national or ethnic provenance (art 1 par3, 3° of the law of 30/07/1981). Hence we request you to remove the contested text or have it removed.  In the opposite case the Center for Equality of Opportunity and Combatting Racism will reserve the right to press charges about this fact with the judicial authorities"'

Pure censorship, in other words: remove your article or you will be prosecuted.  Freedom of Speech is one of the most important rights to me.  'Bad' ideas should be fought by shining a spotlight on them and by debating them, in my opinion.  Not by censoring them: that only makes them more attractive

I'll leave it up to the reader to decide if Paul Beliën has 'bad' ideas.  But this form of direct censorship crosses a line for me.  I doubted at first to maybe republish the text on my weblogs.  But in the second paragraph there is an explicit call not to do this:

'Even though I deny the charges, I hereby comply with the demand.  As author of the text in question I ask all websites and/or other publications that have copied the text outside my knowledge and without my permission, or who have quoted passages from it, to remeove these as well.  If they don't do this, it is not only a violation on my copyright but they are guilty of  "incitement of violence against a group because of national or ethnical provenance", according to the laws cited by the Centre.

Let them start by prosecuting Google!

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Comments

Brutha

Time to emigrate to the USA, I say (or Switzerland for that matter).

Disgust with liberal media hysteria and with political correctness can do crazy things to a person...

And I recently bought Quake4. Better not install that: http://www.standaard.be/Artikel/Detail.aspx?artikelid=G58SAHF2

Flemish Guy From Brussels

Freedom of speech is a concept developed to protect opinions in the context of exchanging ideas and to promote discussion. It doesn't cover freedom of publishing hatred or extreme insulting prose againts other opnions or groups or other verbal violence.

Flemish Guy From Ghent

To cry "freedom of speech" when something is clearly written as pure hatefull racistic drivel and meant to incite and insult as that piece of far-right pendatic man tells a lot about you.

I find it very telling that far-right persons always wave the banner of "freedom of speech" when one of their own can't spout his filth but time and time again
will shout down - drown out - block - etc. anyone that shows their errors, misrepresentation of facts and down right lies. (See Samizdata - USS Clueless - and the rest of your blogroll.)

That "The Brussels Journal" even dares to qoute H.L. Mencken in there "about" page clearly shows that they haven't the first clue what H.L. Mencken .

heather with one mommy, and daddy

You know what incites violence? Appeasing tyrants. Listening to supposed authorities abuse their public trust by surrendering to the will of terrorists who aren't brave enough to debate ideas openly in the public square and live in freedom, who publicly promise to destroy all you've sacrificed to build, keep, protect, pass on.

Nanny state tyranny and sharia slavery are both founded on LIES, and are debasing, and ANTI-HUMANITY, ANTI-LIFE.

Pushing policies that have failed repeatedly on braver neighbors - women, children, the homeless, the weak - that should incite every honorable man, woman and child to PROTEST, no matter that the truth incites the cowardly terrorists and elites to VIOLENCE.

pchas

What enrages me almost more than the Islamofascists are Euroweenies like the Phlegmish Guys from Brussels and Ghent who actually defend the actions of their Orwellian quasi-state agencies against courageous people like Paul Beliën who tell it like it is and won't let the wool be pulled over their eyes.

What makes it even more alarming is that the Phlegmish Guys do this even as their women are getting raped and Islamic radicals are demanding Sharia law in their countries. Maybe they figure that if they lick the boots of their oppressors they will keep from getting kicked in the face.

Well, I have new for you. You'll only get kicked harder. The people who are occupying your country don't respect your so-called "tolerance", they regard it as weakness.

Europe doesn't deserve people as noble and courageous as Paul Beliën. Let the truthspeakers like him and Ayaan Hirsi Ali come to America!

Bart

Has anyone read the article?

That nazi should be in jail. This kind of hatred is responsible for the racists murders in Antwerp. Calling people "animals used to killing" is not something related to freedom of speech, but a fellony according to Belgian law.

B

CFM

B:
Dhimmi Belgian lefties think anyone who doesn't comply - to the letter - with their idiotic leftist dogma is a nazi. You would'nt know a nazi if he ran up and bit you in the ass.

Termite.

pchas

They don't call them the Low Countries for nothing.

A. Hvatum

Typical, it's sad and amusing that so many Europeans are still held ideological prisoners by the ghosts of long dead tyrannts. In one way or another Hitler will always rule over Europe.

A. Hvatum

Typical, it's sad and amusing that so many Europeans are still held ideological prisoners by the ghosts of long dead tyrannts. In one way or another Hitler will always rule over Europe.

Flemish Guy From Ghent

Typical, it's sad that there are so many ultra-rightwing scared shitless racists with bad education and no real knowledge about the world think that they know Europe let alone Belgium.

It's even typical that they who don't have all the freedoms and liberties that us EU Europeans have are thinking that we're actual worse of then them.

It's even typical that they use words like Orwellian to describe the Belgian state but have no problems with a state that can throw anyone in jail without probable cause and without right to see an attorney, to read anyones (e)mail or eavesdrop on anyones phone calls, to keep track of even what books one reads, etc... and all of this in secret because they are scared that someone would attack their way of life and by doing so actually doing the work of the potential terrorists for them.

Then again, it's typical, they are the same people that had a big issue with Clinton having smoked Marry-J and dodging the draft but have no qualms whatsoever with a former coke-head, recovering alcoholic, instigator to abortion and AWOL Bush.

Typical, it's sad and amusing that so many Americans are still held ideological prisoners by the spirit of idiotic tyrannts (J. McCarthy - Reagan - Bush). In one way or another jingoism will always rule over America, sadly the land of the no-longer-free and of the no-longer-brave.

panasianbiz

I stumbled across your blog while I was doing some online research. I am always appalled to read about censorship on any level. We as a free society must allow all voices to be heard, even if we personally disagree with them or find their words offensive.

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