Criminalizing Intolerance: Obama Administration Moves Forward On United Nations Resolution Targeting Anti-Religious Speech

Below is my column today in The Los Angeles Times on the conference this week in Washington on religious speech. I have previously written about the Obama Administration’s break with past policies to support Muslim countries in cracking down on speech deemed “defamatory” to religion. While the latest resolution does not repeat the defamation language, the purpose remains unchanged and the dangers for free speech are obvious. The non-binding resolution was passed in March, largely in response to the assassinations of two Pakistani officials who had spoken out against the nation’s blasphemy law. Ironically, however, the resolution will likely reinforce the right of countries to criminalize anti-religious speech and blasphemy laws.

This week in Washington, the United States is hosting an international conference obliquely titled “Expert Meeting on Implementing the U.N. Human Rights Resolution 16/18.” The impenetrable title conceals the disturbing agenda: to establish international standards for, among other things, criminalizing “intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of … religion and belief.” The unstated enemy of religion in this conference is free speech, and the Obama administration is facilitating efforts by Muslim countries to “deter” some speech in the name of human rights.

Although the resolution also speaks to combating incitement to violence, the core purpose behind this and previous measures has been to justify those who speak against religion. The members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, or OIC, have been pushing for years to gain international legitimacy of their domestic criminal prosecutions of anti-religious speech.

This year, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton invited nations to come to implement the resolution and “to build those muscles” needed “to avoid a return to the old patterns of division.” Those “old patterns” include instances in which writers and cartoonists became the targets of protests by religious groups. The most famous such incident occurred in 2005 when a Danish newspaper published cartoons mocking the prophet Muhammad. The result were worldwide protests in which Muslims reportedly killed more than 100 people — a curious way to demonstrate religious tolerance. While Western governments reaffirmed the right of people to free speech after the riots, they quietly moved toward greater prosecution of anti-religious speech under laws prohibiting hate speech and discrimination.

The OIC members have long sought to elevate religious dogma over individual rights. In 1990, members adopted the Cairo Declaration, which rejected core provisions of the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights and affirmed that free speech and other rights must be consistent with “the principles of the sharia,” or Islamic law. The biggest victory of the OIC came in 2009 when the Obama administration joined in condemning speech containing “negative racial and religious stereotyping” and asked states to “take effective measures” to combat incidents, including those of “religious intolerance.” Then, in March, the U.S. supported Resolution 16/18’s call for states to “criminalize incitement to imminent violence based on religion or belief.” It also “condemns” statements that advocate “hostility” toward religion. Although the latest resolution refers to “incitement” rather than “defamation” of religion (which appeared in the 2005 resolution), it continues the disingenuous effort to justify crackdowns on religious critics in the name of human rights law.

The OIC has hit on a winning strategy to get Western countries to break away from their commitment to free speech by repackaging blasphemy as hate speech and free speech as the manifestation of “intolerance.” Now, orthodoxy is to be protected in the name of pluralism — requiring their own notion of “respect and empathy and tolerance.” One has to look only at the OIC member countries, however, to see their vision of empathy and tolerance, as well as their low threshold for anti-religious speech that incites people. In September, a Kuwaiti court jailed a person for tweeting a message deemed derogatory to Shiites. In Pakistan last year, a doctor was arrested for throwing out a business card of a man named Muhammad because he shared the prophet’s name.

The core countries behind this effort show little tolerance or “empathy” themselves for opposing religions or viewpoints. Saudi Arabia will not allow the construction of a church in the kingdom, let alone allow public observance of other faiths. This year, the Saudi interior minister declared free speech to be an offense against God, declaring the kingdom “categorically [bans] all sorts of demonstrations, marches and sit-ins … as they contradict Islamic sharia law and the values and traditions of Saudi society.” Last week, Saudi courts sentenced an Australian Muslim to be flogged 500 times and sent to jail for “insulting” Muhammad.

What is more alarming, however, is the advancement of this agenda in Western countries. This year, Dutch legislator Geert Wilders secured a hard-fought acquittal from criminal charges after years of investigation and litigation for saying disrespectful things about Muslims. In Britain, a 15-year-old girl was arrested in November 2010 for burning a Koran. Other religions are now following suit and calling for the arrest of those who utter criticisms of their faiths. French fashion designer John Galliano was convicted in September of uttering anti-Semitic remarks in an outburst in a restaurant. In Russia, two prominent art curators in Moscow who faced up to three years in prison for showing art that insulted the Russian Orthodox Church were fined in 2010. In Britain, a 15-year-old boy was given a criminal summons for holding up a sign declaring “Scientology is not a religion, it is a dangerous cult.”

Although the OIC and the Obama administration claim fealty to free speech, the very premise of the meeting reveals a desire to limit it. Many delegates presuppose that speech threatens faith, when it has been religious orthodoxy that has long been the enemy of free speech. Conversely, free speech is the ultimate guarantee of religious freedom.

History has shown that once you yield to the temptation to regulate speech, you quickly find yourself on a slippery slope as other divisive subjects are added to the list. This year, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) declared ominously that “free speech is a great idea, but we’re in a war.”

It seems that some have grown weary of free speech. After all, less speech means less division and discord. When the alternative is violent protests, silence is golden for governments. Of course, denying the right to speak does not create real tranquillity, only the illusion. But for these governments, including our own, an illusion may be as good as reality.

Jonathan Turley is a professor of public interest law at George Washington University.

Los Angeles Times December 13, 2011

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56 thoughts on “Criminalizing Intolerance: Obama Administration Moves Forward On United Nations Resolution Targeting Anti-Religious Speech

  1. Gene,
    Great song choice. The title says it all when it comes to any domestic or international attempt to limit and criminalize free speech. The public isn’t tired of free speech, but governments are. If llowed to stand anything done under the religious label may not be allowed to be criticized.

  2. Whats sad it, that no matter how bad Obama is on this issue the bozos stumbling out of the Republican clown car of opposition would be worse. We are well and truly screwed.

  3. I suspect the real reason all this is happening is because religion is actually losing ground … Churches, Synagogues, Temples, and Mosques are all experiencing declining memberships and reduced funding from the faithful. As memberships decline the political clout of the religious institutions also declines and politicians lose influence over the “captured” masses who are no longer listening to religious leaders.

    The original Inquisition did not save the Catholic Church from heretics (In the 12th century, to counter the spread of Catharism, prosecution of heretics by secular governments became more frequent.) and the following Roman Inquisition did not stem the advance of the Reformation. (In practice, the Inquisition would not itself pronounce sentence, but handed over convicted heretics to secular authorities.)

    Want to fight this latest move by politicians to recapture the masses … you know what to do.

  4. Robert Heinlein had a few thoughts on the subject.

    “Of all the strange crimes that humanity has legislated out of nothing, blasphemy is the most amazing – with obscenity and indecent exposure fighting it out for second and third place.”

    “God is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent – it says so right here on the label. If you have a mind capable of believing all three of these attributes simultaneously, I have a wonderful bargain for you. No checks, please. Cash and in small bills.”

    “One man’s religion is another man’s belly laugh.”

    “The most ridiculous concept ever perpetrated by H.Sapiens is that the Lord God of Creation, Shaper and Ruler of the Universes, wants the saccharine adoration of his creations, that he can be persuaded by their prayers, and becomes petulant if he does not receive this flattery. Yet this ridiculous notion, without one real shred of evidence to bolster it, has gone on to found one of the oldest, largest and least productive industries in history.”

    “There is an old, old story about a theologian who was asked to reconcile the Doctrine of Divine Mercy with the doctrine of infant damnation. ‘The Almighty,’ he explained, ‘finds it necessary to do things in His official and public capacity which in His private and personal capacity He deplores. ”

    “The nice thing about citing god as an authority is that you can prove anything you set out to prove.”

    “When any government, or any church for that matter, undertakes to say to its subjects, ‘This you may not read, this you may not see, this you are forbidden to know,’ the end result is tyranny and oppression, no matter how holy the motives. Mighty little force is needed to control a man whose mind has been hoodwinked; contrariwise, no amount of force can control a free man, a man whose mind is free. No, not the rack, not fission bombs, not anything–you can’t conquer a free man; the most you can do is kill him.”

    “It is a truism that almost any sect, cult, or religion will legislate its creed into law if it acquires the political power to do so, and will follow it by suppressing opposition, subverting all education to seize early the minds of the young, and by killing, locking up, or driving underground all heretics.”

    And finally:

    “The profession of shaman has many advantages. It offers high status with a safe livelihood free of work in the dreary, sweaty sense. In most societies it offers legal privileges and immunities not granted to other men. But it is hard to see how a man who has been given a mandate from on High to spread tidings of joy to all mankind can be seriously interested in taking up a collection to pay his salary; it causes one to suspect that the shaman is on the moral level of any other con man. But it is a lovely work if you can stomach it.”

  5. 1. You say “Then, in March, the U.S. supported Resolution 16/18′s call for states to “criminalize incitement to imminent violence ”
    Isn’t that the formulation that replaced the “clear and present danger” [Wikipedia] test for speech in the USA?
    I am guessing that you suspect that the formulation can be abused, if one takes into consideration the immanent lawless action of those who reject the speech, who hear it as “fighting words”. Is it “hate speech” if it arouses hate in those who disagree? One thinks not, but ….

    2. The problem is compounded where there is a state religion. Then religious talk can be viewed as both anti-church and anti-state; treason. This is an unfortunate complication. Neither state nor church is likely to be calm about effective dissent, but one imagines that the forces of the church would take longer to mobilize, and more open to calls for mercy.

    (also, what Frankly said.)

  6. “Wouldn’t it be easier just to make it illegal to be a jackass?”

    Wouldn’t be easier for religious people to grow up and realize that 1) not everyone shares their beliefs and 2) everything is a suitable subject for criticism or humor although not all criticism and humor are created equal. Mandating respect for religions is going to fail. Respect is earned, not due just because it’s someone’s belief. They are, after all, just beliefs. They have no foundation in fact and faith is their only requirement. That doesn’t make them special or even true. Besides, if your God can’t handle criticism and humor, he/she/it isn’t much of a God now, are they? They created a universe/multiverse but can’t take a joke or being critiqued? Please.

  7. This action should be seen in its fully context. This govt. and other govts. around the world, to include so called first world nations are in the process of brutally suppressing their citizens’ rights. In order to accomplish this goal they need both overt brutality (see OWS, the Arab Spring revolts for justice etc.) Then they need their propaganda, the soft sell.

    Tolerance is relative just as JT described. How is jailing people for blasphemy an example of “tolerance”. “Tolerance is a jingo word aimed at well educated people. It is a thought stopper. Oh, I am so tolerant and I don’t want to criticize something as important as someone else’s religion. This type of propaganda works by taking people’s rightful disgust at the abuse of Muslims say, at the hands of the administration and mixing that up with a lack of critical thought about the Muslim religion itself.

    Obama has ordered the CIA, FBI and the JTTF (among only a few) to infiltrate and spy on the Muslim community. This is repulsive and illegal. We should criticize this action both for the massive hypocrisy it shows on Obama’s part but further because it is unlawful and wrong. However, this abusive action by Obama and Company should not shut down our thinking and asking real questions about the Muslim religion.

    Neither should our rightful disgust at hate speech concerning Jews shut down critical thought about that religion (and so on). Banning speech is banning thought. Some people’s thoughts are ugly and cruel. There is a way to confront that cruelty, by speaking out.

    This is the soft sell, crackdowns are the hard sell. They are all of a piece and all most be resisted.

  8. “raff, Don’t ya know anybody is better than Obama?”


    Right, once we get rid of this creator of all evil in the world, then we can get some real change. Maybe Ron Paul? Anyone would be better than Obama,
    even John McCain!


    Heinlein had some great quotes. I particularly liked this fragment from above:

    “The most ridiculous concept ever perpetrated by H.Sapiens is that the Lord God of Creation, Shaper and Ruler of the Universes, wants the saccharine adoration of his creations, that he can be persuaded by their prayers, and becomes petulant if he does not receive this flattery.”

    This has struck me from childhood as being the ultimate blasphemy, by trivializing the whole concept of God. It is an irony lost on the faithful.


    A very good point about religions losing ground. To support themselves in the style to which they became accustomed “religious” officialdom has always in the end used threats and violence to maintain their power.


    Totally agree with you on this. Almost all such legislation nationally or internationally is authoritarian folly.

  9. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

    Seems pretty clear to me.

  10. Pete, is that for the philosophy or as an instruction manual?

    One of his better books, methinks; however “Stranger in a Strange Land was considered by many to be his masterpiece. I used material from “Stranger in a Strange Land” in Chapter One of my dissertation.

  11. Jill, I did not follow your 10:27 post that well. Here is what I got:
    Governments oppress people using force and propaganda. The word “tolerance” is part of the propaganda arm, and used to dampen our solidarity with oppressed victims in other countries.
    Then a change of direction that I didn’t follow
    Obama is wrong to spy on Muslims in mosques, but there may be some anti-American feelings in those communities.
    then another change
    It is an over-reaction to anti-semitism to accept Judaism uncritically.
    then the conclusion
    Resist manipulation.
    Was I close?

  12. Dredd regarding 5:28 (OWS and military force)
    Yes, things are dangerous.
    It is no longer reasonable to assume that politicians are stupid. It seems more reasonable to assume that the 1% is reacting to widespread dissent. Are the West Coast port shutdowns a return of Seattle 1999?
    Suggestion: Get to know the Prison Action Groups in your town. See what you may be getting next Christmas.

  13. I would like to replace my earlier comment of “Wouldn’t it be easier just to make it illegal to be a jackass?” with what I think is Mike S’s more coherent expression “Almost all such legislation nationally or internationally is authoritarian folly”.
    Possibly on how to deal with “hate speech” if legislation is folly: allow it, although not when spoken “at” the group “hated” and who are temporarily or permanently captive, or have a right to be there. Then it is verbal abuse. Assault, and pointless – no redeeming social value.
    In addition, those who practice “hate speech” can be notified that their “action plan” is illegal and will be stopped by force, so don’t get worked up.

  14. SwM
    I view Gingrich’s statements as McCarthyisms: deranged – out of range. If some Muslims are unhappy with “America”, I say join the club.
    The people who seem most dedicated to the destruction of the US were bailed out. (We got sold out.) Also I noticed that the current military authorization bill is within spitting distance of Paulson’s Number ($700 Billion).
    Gingrich takes it as gospel that the Muslim Brotherhood is evil. I note that the Brotherhood was one of the groups trying to get rid of Mubarak, and can you blame them? Even though he was our ally in the region and a close friend of Hillary Clinton.

  15. As a matter of logic, common sense and sound policy, the tort of defamation ought not to have any application to matters of belief and opinion. That is why the notion of “hate speech” is inherently absurd.

  16. “I would like to replace my earlier comment of “Wouldn’t it be easier just to make it illegal to be a jackass?” with what I think is Mike S’s more coherent expression “Almost all such legislation nationally or internationally is authoritarian folly”.”

    I appreciate your comment, but after I read your piece, which I in turn agree with, I felt that I should add what thinking led me to that statement, which I trust you already sense.

    All such hate speech regulations historically came about from two separate branches. The first is I think much older historically and was recently discussed in the: “Lese Majesty Means Less Speech: Thai Court Sentences U.S. Citizen To Over Two Years In Jail For Defaming Royal Family” thread.
    This strain falls in the range of restricting people’s ability to criticize those that govern them. It is “criminalized hate speech” in the sense that one can not say anything to criticize the behavior/intelligence/appearance of the King figure. Its intent is maintenance of the status quo.

    The second strain is more recent and dates to the aftermath of WWII. The Allies occupied West Germany and in their attempt to eradicate the widespread prejudice of the people, while setting up a democratic form of government, the West Germans were forced/encouraged to make a crime of Anti-Jewish speech, propaganda and behavior. While this attempt might be see as a noble one, it really was an action meant to paper over a reality, in order to make it go away. It is impossible for me to believe that after WWII
    the hatred of Jews by a majority of German’s evaporated. These were a people that up until the 1920’s had a general dislike of Jews, as did many other European peoples, and this latent dislike was honed by one of the most effective propaganda machines ever conceived. The loss of the war was seen as a disgrace, but I’m positive many ascribed it to a Jewish Conspiracy. How could it be otherwise? They were/are human beings who behaved monstrously, but except for a minority they were not monsters.

    These anti-hate speech laws actually had unintended consequences in that it created a massive silence within West Germany about the war and about the Shoah. Silencing opinions and discussion only drives prejudice underground and teaches those bearing it how to hide their opinions, or leads them to find new ways to express them that don’t run afoul of the law.

    In the U.S. with its genocidal, ugly history of slavery and Jim Crow, the advent of the 1964 Civil Rights Law and the burgeoning of anti- hate speech laws that followed in its wake, didn’t suddenly turn racists benevolent. This effort too drove racism underground and led to new means of expressing it through code words whose meanings were universally understood. Just as a cancer whose treatments have brought temporary respite, the strain remained virulent and spread through other organs of the body politic.

    We again see a papering over of beliefs that still remain and in a sense it gives cover to those bigots who get the message of how to spread their
    hatred within the bounds of the law. In fact it allows these bigots to claim that prejudice has ended and so anyone still referring to racism is “playing the black card”. This has a result of marginalizing those who would protest the ongoing racism that exists in this country. Making almost any form of speech illegal is authoritarian, futile and in the end counter productive. When those beliefs are turned into violent action
    the laws in place are sufficient to punish and perhaps deter bigoted attacks.

    When Cheney, Goodwin and Schwerner were murdered in Mississippi the perpetrators could have easily been found guilty of 1st Degree murder, had the local authorities been willing. That guilty verdict, had it occurred
    at the time would have the called for the most extreme penalty. There was no need for it to have been made into a “hate crime” although racial hatred was the prime motivator. Violent crimes against people can if the will exists, easily be punished by existing law. Laws prohibiting speech on the grounds of bigotry are unnecessary, counter-productive and ope to loose definition. They are capable of making the bad situation of human bigotry worse.

  17. Mike,

    Excellent points, especially about the unintended consequences of Germany’s post-WWII laws. As Brad Pitt said in Inglorious Basterds, “Nah, see, we don’t like that. We like our Nazis in uniform. That way we can spot ’em just like that..”

  18. Gene,

    Re: “Inglorious Basterds” I must say that as a Jew, upon whom the Shoah weighs heavily, I was literally “stunned” and weeping at the end of the movie and couldn’t leave my seat even after the credits. It was the absolute best movie for summing up the Jewish reaction to the Shoah, by giving us the perfect revenge fantasy. Tarantino got it exactly right and beyond my personal feelings I think it was the best movie of that year. For those critics who protested the violence, a view of some of the concentration camp films after the war and of Schindler’s List, might give insight into the anger many Jews still harbor towards NAZI’s. I get that forgiveness frees ones soul, but perhaps there are certain actions that are simply not forgivable. This is why I am highly empathetic to the experience of Blacks, Native Americans, Latino’s and Asians to the racism they’ve experienced in America. I get their anger and frustration.

  19. [Thanks, Prof. Turley. Here’s what confronted me on the exciting internet!]


    Emperor and Empress Obama (professional vacationers) can be found in the Old Testament! Read on:

    Proverbs 19:10 (NIV): “It is not fitting for a fool to live in luxury – how much worse for a slave to rule over princes!”
    Also Proverbs 30:22 (NIV) which says that the earth cannot bear up under “a servant who becomes king.”
    And Ecclesiastes 5:2-3 (KJV) advises: “let thy words be few…a fool’s voice is known by multitude of words.”
    Although Obama is not descended from slaves, he may feel that he’s destined to become a black-slavery avenger.
    Or maybe an enslaver of all free citizens!
    For some stunning info on Pres. Obama and his fellow traitors, Google “Imam Bloomberg’s Sharia Mosque,” “Michelle Obama’s Allah-day,” “Obama Supports Public Depravity,” “David Letterman’s Hate Etc.,” “Un-Americans Fight Franklin Graham” and also “Sandra Bernhard, Larry David, Kathy Griffin, Bill Maher, Joan Rivers, Sarah Silverman.” Also Google “Islam will purify Jews and Christians” and “Prof. F. N. Lee’s ISLAM IN THE BIBLE [PDF].”
    PS – Since Christians are commanded to ask God to send severe judgment on persons who commit and support the worst forms of evil (see I Cor. 5 and note “taken away”), Christians everywhere should constantly pray that the Lord will soon “take away” or at least overthrow all US leaders (including subversive, America-hating, Jesus-bashing Hollywood shmucks) who continue to sear their conscience, who dangle every unspeakably filthy vice before young people, and who arrogantly trample the God-given rights of the majority including the rights of the unborn. Do we need a second American Revolution?
    PPS – For a rare look at the 181-year-old endtime belief which has long neutralized millions of American patriots by promising them an “imminent rapture” off earth – which has diverted them away from being prepared to stand against all enemies, domestic as well as foreign – Google “Pretrib Rapture Politics,” “Pretrib Rapture Dishonesty,” “Pretrib Rapture Diehards,” “Edward Irving is Unnerving,” “Pretrib Rapture Secrecy,” and “Pretrib Rapture – Hidden Facts” – all by the author of the bestselling nonfiction book “The Rapture Plot” (the most accurate and highly endorsed documentation on the pretrib rapture’s long-covered-up-but-now-revealed beginnings in Britain in 1830 – see Armageddon Books).

  20. You can not have an effective law to limit anti-religious speech when there is also a freedom of religion.

    If there is only one religion allowed you can make blasphemy against that religion illegal. Yes it would be a horrific attack on basic human rights, but it could be done.

    However when you have the freedom to worship anyone and anything, when any notion you can contemplate can be labeled religious dogma you have a problem trying to make anti-religious speech illegal. If anything can be a religion to someone then any speech could be labeled blasphemy.

    What happens if my religion mandates anti-religious speech? If my religion states that any attempt to limit such speech is in fact hate speech against my religion? The very law itself becomes blasphemy.

  21. Mike S, you say, “I get that forgiveness frees ones soul, but perhaps there are certain actions that are simply not forgivable.”

    Well, yeah, but I would like to examine the premise that “foregiveness frees one’s soul.”

    I don’t go for that, not really. To me, what frees one’s soul is the ability to give up feelings that are toxic, not feelings that are just BAD but that should well BE BAD and should not be ignored or even downplayed or “softened.” I think this is an important distinction. I see nothing wrong with hatred, per se; in fact, I think it is very like the self-protective mechanism that makes us feel disgust when we smell certain smells, so that we avoid eating things that can very easily kill us. I think as an individual I must really hate what is very dangerous to me, and the notion that I should try to manipulate my own feelings to somehow “turn the heat down” on that hatred doesn’t fly.

    On the other hand, I know that some HELPLESS feelings of hatred or rage can utterly destroy a person and in that regard, it is sometimes absolutely NECESSARY to decrease the amount of mental and emotional energy we give to the objects of our hatred and even the subjects involved. In other words, there are times when the simple pain of the hatred itself is a motivation needed for survival. To use a terrible fictional example, in the movie “Marathon Man,” there comes a point where the protagonist realizes he has to have a burst of energy in order to confront the life-and-death situation, AND he needs to give up the tender feelings he had for a woman (if I am remembering this correctly) quickly and efficiently. He has a terrible toothache as a result of torture and he has some Anbesol that he keeps applying to his teeth to dull the pain. Then we see him figure out that he needs a certain level of intensity to accomplish his goal (great actor) and he throws away his little vial of painkiller.

    There do come times when one has to give up or distance oneself from certain feelings to move on, of course. My kid had lived with a terrible burden of anger for 9 years when, in 2005, he fell quite ill, and we looked for all sorts of treatment: standard, mainstream, alternative, all of it. We located a psychologist in (of all places) Dallas, Texas, who did something he called “Depth Forgiveness.” It didn’t sound very nice, to me. My kid also didn’t like the “airy fairy sound of it.” But he checked it out and found that it was interesting, and then did two full courses of it. The psychologist, a guy named Steven R. Vazquez, Ph.D., is brilliant! He did tell me that nobody else (before my son) had ever needed two full courses of treatment; he let me pay him off about $20/month and never complained! His theory is quite complex, and it works (anecdotal, yes, but pretty convincing), and I’m not sure there is any “exercise” to the forgiveness other than identifying the “allergen” and recognizing it.

    If we do not insist that some actions (not necessarily “some people”) are unforgivable, I think we cheapen our own moral currency.

  22. A favorite meme in the Muslim fundamentalist world is “the Jews are the descendants of apes and pigs.”

    It had its origins in the hadith, or sayings attributed to the Muslim prophet Muhammad, and is specifically identified with the following Koranic verses:

    ” … They are those whom Allah has cast aside and on whom His wrath has fallen and of whom He has made some as apes and swine…” (5:60);

    “…You have surely known the end of those from amongst you who transgressed in the matter of the Sabbath, in consequence of which we condemned them: Be ye like apes, despised” (2:65);[13] and

    “when, instead of amending, they became more persistent in the pursuit of that which they were forbidden, we condemned them: Be ye as apes, despised” (7:166)..

    Does the President of the United States of America, who went on record while still a senator (in an interview with New England Public Radio) as saying “The Constitution is holding us back… ” propose to officially use his signature on a UN treaty criminalizing “intolerance” to abrogate the First Amendment in this country?

    And will Barack Hussein Obama forbid Muslims in the United States from speaking out about the porcine and simian ancestry of Jews? He had Sam Bacile, producer of “The Innocence of Muslims,” thrown in jail for a probation violation – Mr. Bacile used the Internet in violation of his probation – after blaming the violence in Benghazi on Mr. Bacile’s YouTube video.

    Barack Hussein Obama seems to have strong issues with religious freedom and freedom of speech and assembly – the freedoms Americans have in the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America.

    During the Obama administration, members of the US military became subject to court-martial for demonstrating their religious faith publicly, even when off duty. And under Barack Obama’s administration, public demonstrations where the President happens to be became illegal for the first time in American history.

    The nature of most religions is exclusive – if you believe the precepts of one religion, you necessarily do not believe in other religions which conflict with your religion. Only common courtesy prevents most people from provoking constant quarrels with each other over the situation. But until recently, common courtesy sufficed in most cases to keep the peace.

    George Mason, the Founding Father who agitated and had ratification of the Constitution by the states held up until the Virginia Bill of Rights was written into the Federal Constitution as the “Bill of Rights” – Amendments One through Ten.

    The First Amendment solved the conundrum of personal belief by getting the Federal Government out of the business of regulating religion, speech and free assembly. Americans were left free to speak, worship and assemble as they thought proper.

    It’s ominous that now self-described “liberals” (who Edmund Burke wouldn’t recognize as such) are now the people saying “but no one should have the freedom to shout “Fire!” in a crowded theater!” And conservatives have finally come around full circle to say “of course you should have that right – and other people have the right to say “He’s a liar! There’s no fire!”

    Impeachment is a desperate remedy. It was arguably abused in the case of Bill Clinton, and Richard Milhous Nixon resigned before he could be impeached for obstruction of justice.

    But a President of the United States who is systematically dismantling the Bill of Rights OUGHT to be impeached – because this is a desperate situation which calls for a desperate remedy,

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