Why censor freedom of expression only in case of anti-Semitism?

The Express Tribune: by Kaiser Bengali.

The publication of sacrilegious cartoons in France and the release of a blasphemous video on YouTube by a US-based man are more recent events that are indicative of an intensifying anti-Islam trend in Western societies. However, these are not isolated events and the hate-storm has been gathering steam for some time now.

In 2006, Geert Wilders’ extremist-right wing Freedom Party in the Netherlands initiated the campaign against Islam, which they called a violent political ideology and a threat to Dutch culture and Western values. Wilders produced a film Fitna, which interlays images of terrorist attacks with quotes from the Holy Quran. He also called for a ban on the wearing of the headscarf and on the construction of mosques. Based on an anti-Islam manifesto, the Freedom Party won 24 seats — about one-sixth — in the 150-seat Dutch Parliament in 2010.

Wilders’ ideas struck a chord in mainstream politics across Europe. France and Belgium banned veils that covered the face and Switzerland barred the construction of new minarets following a referendum. Anders Breivik, a Norwegian Christian extremist, who killed nearly 80 people outside Oslo to express his anti-Islamist sentiments, had cited Wilders’ anti-Islamic views in his online manifesto.


2 replies

  1. The Muslim Times is all for the basic human rights of our Jewish brethren and sisters and their watchful eye over antisemitism, prevents prejudice and hatred against them, which in the last 17 centuries since Emperor Constantine had lead to their periodic massacre and even holocaust.

    In a similar vein the Muslims should jealously guard any rise in anti-Islamism, hate speech. After all it was hate speech of Pope Urban II, which unleashed the monster of Crusades, which could not be managed for centuries, until the Church lost its influence on politics. Genuine criticism of Muslim extremists and their terror policies is well and good, but, when freedom of speech borders onto hate speech and promotes hatred against Islam and all Muslims and encourages stereotyping, the Muslims need to be vigilant.

    There is always a gap between rhetoric and practice of any politician and sometimes there are glaring double standards. We were taught the virtues of democracy for decades, until it become well known that UNO is completely undemocratic with 15 countries in the UN Security Council running the show and 5 of them having veto powers. Similarly, democracy is good for the Muslim countries until an anti-West government is elected and then the West is unsure about the virtues of democracy. Likewise, we are being taught the virtues of freedom of speech and its virtues without any exception. This is the rhetoric! The practice is that adult pornographic movies cannot be shown on national media during the prime time. There are similarly several other limitations on free speech, including laws against hate speech. If free speech is given free reign against minority religions then there is no reason to believe that freedoms of minorities can be maintained. Sooner or later xenophobia will take hold and mayhem, murder and holocaust will rule against the abhorred minorities. This is why the Muslims are requesting protections for themselves that have ample precedence in laws against hate speech and denial of holocaust.

  2. “Allah likes not the uttering of unseemly speech in public, except on the part of one who is being wronged. Indeed, Allah is All-Hearing, All-Knowing.” (Al Quran 4:149)

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