We’re all used to the idea that Europeans are routinely brought up on “hate speech” charges for saying insulting (but true) things about Islam.
One would expect Denmark to be an exception, but it isn’t: Lars Hedegaard has been charged with making defamatory remarks about Muslims, and now another Dane has pleaded guilty to a similar offense under the same law.
Jesper Langballe, the church spokesman for the Danish People’s Party, pleaded guilty under protest, because it was obvious that the law was written in such a way that he could not avoid being convicted. As he says, the criminality of such speech depends on “whether the defendant felt violated or defamed, and not whether the statements made are actually true or false.”
According to The Copenhagen Post:
Right-Wing MP Convicted of Defamation
Pleaded guilty in order to protest what he said was an unfair law
Jesper Langballe, church spokesperson for the Danish People’s Party (DF), was on Friday convicted of making defamatory statements about Muslims.
Langballe pleaded guilty to the charge of defamation under the anti-racism section of the penal code.
In January, Langballe wrote a letter to Berlingske Tidende newspaper in which he commented on claims made by the chairman of the Free Press Society, Lars Hedegaard, that Muslim fathers rape their daughters.
In his letter, Langballe supported Hedegaard’s views, saying that Hedegaard should not have written that “Muslim fathers rape their daughters, when the truth seems to be that they only kill them (the so-called honour killings) — and turn a blind eye when uncles rape them.”
Langballe lashed out at the laws banning racist speech, and for allowing courts to convict people based on whether the defendant felt violated or defamed, and “not whether the statements made are actually true or false,” he said.
“Given this section and its position within the penal code, I have to believe that I’m being convicted in advance of the trial. I have no intention of participating in such a charade. That’s why I confess.”
Langballe was sentenced to pay 5,000 kroner.
Hat tip: Fjordman.