France has recently seem a rollback in free speech rights, but there remains enough in the country to defeat the ridiculous attempt by President Nicolas Sarkozy’s to stop sales of a “voodoo doll” in his image.
Sarkozy is notoriously thin-skinned, but it is remarkable that any politician would object to a caricature item. The judge in Paris held that the doll was “within the authorized limits of free expression and the right to humour.” We would call it a “parody defense.”
Sarkozy, however, is not done. He is now appealing. It sounds like he is trying to simply bleed the company in legal fees and the question is who is paying for this frivolous exercise.
Mr Sarkozy’s lawyer said the president would appeal against the decision.
The doll is not without its educational value. Customers can stick into memorable quotes from the president printed on the doll, such as “work more to earn more.”
It is not clear whether the voodoo dolls really work, but every time the judge was making a negative ruling against manufactured K & B, he would experience a sharp pain in the back and robotically rule for the company.
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