We have previously discusses alarming moves in France to limit or deny speech through blasphemy prosecutions to hate speech to barring “antihistorical” speech. Now, in the wake of the recent killings by a Muslim extremist, the government of President Nicolas Sarkozy is proposing a new law that would jail repeat visitors to extremist web sites. It is a measure that strips away core free speech rights of citizens and gives the government a new ambiguous power to arrest people for the things that they read.
Sarkozy insists that such websites should be treated the same as child pornography and that “anyone who regularly consults Internet sites which promote terror or hatred or violence will be sentenced to prison.” Of course, child pornography contains an objective identifiable component to the child — picture of a minor engaged in sexual conduct. Sarkozy’s Internet law would leave it to the government to determine what sites are espousing “terrorist” viewpoints. Authoritarian governments have long defined critics as criminals and terrorists from China to Iran to North Korea.
Sarkozy expressed impatience with those who raise the niceties of free speech: “Don’t tell me it’s not possible. What is possible for pedophiles should be possible for trainee terrorists and their supporters, too.”
So, Sarkozy will identify those people “in training” to be terrorists.
It is a pattern that is all too familiar to Americans. After an individual or group commits a heinous act of terror, the government immediately uses the attack to limit freedoms of all citizens and to expand its own ill-defined powers. In this case, Sarkozy’s prospects for reelection increased with the massacre and he appears to be riding the backlash following the attacks.
It appears however that the last victim of these attack will be free speech in France.
45 thoughts on “Sarkozy Proposes To Arrest People Who Visit “Terrorist” Websites”
A slew of new polls conducted on the French presidential election shows Socialist Party candidate Francois Hollande building a lead ahead there ahead of the first ballots are cast. France uses a two round system, which is an open contest in the first round (set for April 22nd), and if no candidate gets over 50 percent of the vote, the top two candidates move on to the second round (May 6th). Polls show that Hollande and current French President Nicolas Sarkozy are likely to move on to the second round, where Hollande has a large lead. From Bloomberg:
[Hollande and Sarkozy] addressed supporters in Paris yesterday with Hollande extending his advantage in a head-to-head race by two points to 56 percent against 44 percent, according to a TNS Sofres survey on April 13. The challenger took the lead in the 10-person first round set for April 22. A CSA poll on April 12 put the gap at 57-43, up from eight points two weeks ago.
In other words, keep your opinions /stance to yourself or we will accuse you of forwarding an anti-semitic position which also is bigoted, non-factual and idiotic.
Where did you study that debate technique? Babylon? No, Jerusalem in ca 200 BCE, I think. Saw a good program on the Talmud’s development which gave that fact about the two first schools.
Oh well, arguing facts with you is perhaps meaningless when you reply with abuse. You are like our friend Tony C. who wants the others to run, and does not see that that makes him a bully. Which may be your mission too.. Is it?
Thanks for the point about the Arab lobby. Saw some figures that the Saudies alone employ up in the 100 in Washington, or so. And Egypt wants to keep our money coming in (as does the CIA). And as someone pointed out, the Gulf States are terrified of Iran and the Shias, and want the USA to protect them. Of course as long as the oil flows we will.
Your stance, would seem to be in reaction to abuse, either personal or tribal/religious. Do you know yourself? Why was fulfilling the “next year Jerusalem” so important that almost 2,000 years of diaspora meant no diminshing of that resolve?
Hope we can have a good exchange of ideas without rancor or mud-slinging.
Up to you—or have I stepped on your toes again?
As Groundskeeper Willie would say … “Cheese eating surrender monkeys” every one of em.
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