Election candidate arrested over Churchill speech – Telegraph
Paul Weston a member of Great Britain’s Liberty Party was arrested both for delivering a speech in public and on charges of “suspicion of racial harassment”.
The former charge apparently derives from a requirement to have some kind of permit before speaking with a blow horn.
The latter charge was apparently because Weston dared to quote Winston Churchill’s book The River War in which Churchill made derogatory remarks about Islam :
“How dreadful are the curses which Mohammedanism lays on its votaries! Besides the fanatical frenzy, which is as dangerous in a man as hydrophobia in a dog, there is this fearful fatalistic apathy. The effects are apparent in many countries. Improvident habits, slovenly systems of agriculture, sluggish methods of commerce, and insecurity of property exist wherever the followers of the Prophet rule or live. A degraded sensualism deprives this life of its grace and refinement; the next of its dignity and sanctity. The fact that in Mohammedan law every woman must belong to some man as his absolute property — either as a child, a wife, or a concubine — must delay the final extinction of slavery until the faith of Islam has ceased to be a great power among men. Thousands become the brave and loyal soldiers of the faith: all know how to die but the influence of the religion paralyses the social development of those who follow it. No stronger retrograde force exists in the world. Far from being moribund, Mohammedanism is a militant and proselytizing faith.”
Where is the incitement racial or otherwise? Certainly Churchill overstates since there are many Muslims to whom these charges are inapplicable ( indeed there are those among Muslims who fight against these evils.) But is this passage so wildly inaccurate when leveled at the governments of Saudi Arabia, Pakistan or Iran? Do we not witness rampant misogyny ,backwardness, & fanaticism in the Islamic World on a daily basis? Have we not seen mobs of BRITISH Muslims (literally) screaming for Danish blood with chants of “die die Denmark” in response to the cartoons ridiculing Mohammed? I myself have posted numerous examples of these evils on my blog.
In any event the word incitement has an actual legal meaning in the U.S.: speech whose purpose can be objectively shown to be to persuade people to commit violent criminal acts in the here & NOW –denouncing a religion is not incitement . Calling on your audience to commit murder IS. (whether or not the call was motivated by racism or religion).
If you use your right of free speech to condemn Islam ( or Judaism or Christianity) you are not guilty of “incitement” because some fanatic decides to murder you .
It is the fanatic who must be stopped, not appeased.
But this grasp of free speech has been thrown out the window in Europe ,where instead of protecting the free speech rights of Weston ,they do the work of his critics by seeking to silence him by force.
Author’s note: Nothing I say should be taken of as even a semi- endorsement of Weston ‘s beliefs beyond what I have stated,(which concern the Churchill quote) I do not know of ,nor do I endorse his other statements & for all I know they may be loathsome to me . But nothing in the Churchill quote justifies imprisonment & if Weston made some other comment that is a genuine incitement to mob violence it is not mentioned in the article.