I’ve written in the past about Jussi Halla-aho, Tomashot, and other Finnish writers and bloggers who have been convicted under Finland’s “hate speech” laws for speaking out against immigration and Islamization.
The latest Finn convicted of “incitement against an ethnic group” (hets mot folkgrupp in the Swedish version) is a member of parliament, James Hirvisaari. Needless to say, Mr. Hirvisaari belongs to the True Finns party (Perussuomalaiset).
The offending passage:
US: “Unfortunately, with rampant Muslim immigration to Finland, there will also be an increase in genuine real racism, which will target especially the Jews, but also the native population and other ethnic groups. And on top of that, discrimination, unbearable arrogance and rude behavior, anger, women’s oppression, child mutilation (TT:FGM), sexual misconduct, persecution of minorities, rioting, flag burning, disturbances, drugs, looting, rape crimes, pedophilia, polygamy, child marriages, shame violence, ritual slaughter, whippings, stonings, and others utterly disgusting and fully twisted traditions and other phenomena. Eventually, even suicide bombings and terrorism. That is, if we do not dance exactly according to their tune.”
[Päijät-Häme district court had thrown out the charges around a year ago, saying that the text Hirvisaari had published was simply him exercising his freedom of speech.]
Member of Parliament, James Hirvisaari fined for incitement against ethnic group
HS: What True Finns MP James Hirvisaari published in a blog post on 4 February 2010 at the UusiSuomi online newspaper service, has been given a verdict.
Kouvola Court of Appeal has convicted the True Finns MP, James Hirvisaari, with a fine for ethnic agitation. According to the court what he wrote in his blog was offensive to Muslims. The fine was equal to 1425 euros.
Päijät-Häme district court previously dismissed the indictment against Hirvisaari, because it didn’t deem the writings as disparaging. The district court’s view was that a politician has the right to criticize immigration policy.
The Court of Appeal decided the matter differently. According to it Hirvisaari’s web writings was sweeping and discriminatory, and specified a group of people as criminals.
The Court of Appeal took the view that the characterizing of an ethnic group as criminal isn’t within the limits of free speech as generalization and a provocation.
True Finns Party parliamentary group chairman, Pirkko Ruohonen-Lerner believes that they’ll take a position on the case, when the decision is final. Although this might still go to the Supreme Court.