Norwegian Filmmaker Under Criminal Investigation for Challenging Transgender Identity

We have a new assault on free speech in Europe. Tonje Gjevjon, a lesbian filmmaker and actress, is now facing up to three years in prison. Her crime? Saying on Facebook that a man cannot become a lesbian.

Gjevjon was put under investigation for making the comments about Norwegian activist Christine Jentoft, a transgender female that often refers to herself as a lesbian mother. On Facebook Gjevjon wrote “It’s just as impossible for men to become a lesbian as it is for men to become pregnant. Men are men regardless of their sexual fetishes.”

This is obviously protected speech in the United States. However, in many countries, it is not a criminal offense to express an opposing view on gender identity.

Jeftoft has previously brought criminal charges against those who questioned his sexual identification.

Free speech in Norway and much of Europe is in a free fall. In 2020, the country amended its penal code that added “gender identity and gender expression” as protected categories from hate speech.

Those expressing contrary views can face up to three years in jail. Not only does the law criminalize public comments, but you can receive a year in jail even for comments made in private.

The impact of these laws was evident in a recent poll of German citizens. Only 18% of Germans feel free to express their opinions in public. 59% of Germans did not even feel free expressing themselves in private among friends. And just 17% felt free to express themselves on the Internet.

We have been discussing the ongoing controversies — and prosecutions — over what are called Trans Exclusionary Radical Feminists (TERFs). The term is used for feminists who have voiced opposition to transgender policies and laws that they believe “erase” or “marginalize” biological women. The most famous such figure is author J.K. Rowling who has not only been the subject of a global cancel campaign but was recently listed by Buzzfeed with figures like cult leader Jim Jones, Benedict Arnold and O.J. Simpson as “villains.”

In 2019, we discussed the prosecution of Finnish Member of Parliament Päivi Räsänen. She was critical of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland for its support of the Helsinki LGBT Pride events in June. She spoke out against the involvement while highlighting a quote from Romans 1:24-27 which reads:

24 Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.

25 They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

26 Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones.

27 In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

In March, both were acquitted of all charges in their cases.

Norway is a vivid example of how this movement to criminalize speech is continuing. The left has embraced censorship and criminalization to silence those with opposing views, even views based on religious values. It is a movement that continues to gain support in the United States.  However, citizens need only to look to Europe to see what awaits us if we continue on this course.

It is no accident that, when Elon Musk bought Twitter, figures like Hillary Clinton turned to Europe to censor the views of fellow Americans.  The anti-free speech movement has taken hold of the European Union.

The Gjevjon case is only the latest skirmish in this existential struggle for free speech in the West.


65 thoughts on “Norwegian Filmmaker Under Criminal Investigation for Challenging Transgender Identity”

  1. Jonathan: You briefly mentioned Elon Musk in this column and say the “anti-free speech movement has taken hold of the European Union”. You’re right but in ways that actually protect “free speech”. Case in point. Twitter just got hit with a judgment in a German court. Michael Blume, the commissioner against anti-semitism in Baden-Wuerttenberg, just won a defamation suit against Twitter. Blume dedicated his victory to Dr. Fauci. Blume took Twitter to court because they posted false claims that Blume had “a closeness to pedophilia”, committed adultery and of being involved in “antisemitic scandals”. Some Twitter users even threatened Blume’s wife and children. The German court ruled Twitter should have removed the comments when first notified. And the court ruled the failure to remove any further defamatory posts could result in fines up to $268,000. Not exactly chump change for Musk these days who is having a hard time paying his bills .In dedicating his court victory to Dr. Fauci Blume said: “When even Musk himself lets trolls loose on a scientist [a ref to Musk’s call for Dr. Fauci to be prosecuted] then that’s disturbing. I believe that’s just wrong”.

    Musk is facing other regulatory problems in the EU. In the latest iteration of his verification policy Musk is planning to force Twitter users to accept personalized ads unless they pay for a subscription service with an opt-out option. This conflicts with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation under which Twitter can’t force users to accept force-fed ads. So Musk is between a rock and a hard place. If he goes through with his plan, because he is desperate for ad revenue, he faces EU penalties of up to 6% of global Twitter revenues. Willful violations face even bigger fines.

    So, contrary to your claims one German court and the EU are actually trying to protect the free speech rights of consumers–the right not to be defamed and the right not to be force fed ads they don’t like. This is part of the “free speech” equation you have left out. Just a reminder that every coin has two sides!

  2. “Her crime? Saying on Facebook that a man cannot become a lesbian”

    Lesbian -n; adj-
    denoting or relating to women who are sexually or romantically attracted exclusively to other women, or to sexual attraction or activity between women.

    So her crime is: speaking the truth.

    1. That’s the politically congruent (“=”) definition in the modern family of languages to socially distance trans/homosexuals from others in the transgender spectrum. Still, she is right to distinguish between the several disorders including trans/social, especially males lurking in female closets.

      lesbian (adj.)

      1590s, “pertaining to the island of Lesbos,” from Latin Lesbius, from Greek lesbios “of Lesbos,” Greek island in northeastern Aegean Sea (the name originally may have meant “wooded”), home of Sappho, great lyric poet whose erotic and romantic verse embraced women as well as men

  3. Born a biological male, always a biological male. Born a biological female, always a biological female. One can change their appearance and way of acting but one cannot change their gender because one cannot change the XY chromosomes they were born with.

  4. Jonathan: Your column has prompted some of your followers to come out from under their rocks. “GoneThere”, clearly an anti-trans fanatic, tells “Trans people please, get help and therapy you need to manage your disease”. Never mind that there is no medical evidence that being trans is a “disease”. But “GoneThere” goes further and gives trans people a warning: “Pedophiles and their supporters/enablers are inhuman and subject to extermination”. Again, no evidence LGBTQ+ people are “pedophiles” waiting outside school yards to “groom” young children. But this is the kind of anti-LGBTQ+ hysteria and lies you see–even on this blog. Killing trans people is “Gone There’s” solution. No doubt he would have watched with approval as trains took Jews to extermination camps because Hitler didn’t consider Jews “human”.

    Coincidentally (or maybe not), your column comes just after Pres. Biden signed the Respect for Marriage Act that protects same-sex and interracial marriage in all 50 states. He did this because all the polls show a vast majority of Americans support same-sex and interracial marriage. And your column follows Elon Musk’s attack on Joel Roth, a former Twitter employee, who Musk has accused, without any evidence, of being a pedophile. In Texas the governor and attorney general are on a mission to criminalize the trans gender community. Right-wing extremists are on a mission. They don’t believe in “free speech”. They want to force the LGBTQ+ community back into the closet. So, “free speech” is under attack right here in the good old USA–not just in Europe.

    1. Dennis McIntyre, countering your argument is a very small task. Part of the LGBTQ political belief is the promotion of the acceptance of “Minor-Attracted” persons. This is how you and your woke friends gloss over the word pedophilia. I have two questions for you. Is a child able to defend his or her self against a sexual predator? Does a child know what is happening when he or she is being assaulted? “Minor- attracted” vernacular is being accepted by the LGBT community. How other wise is this white washing of the word pedophilia supposed to be interrupted other than for what it is. Are you included?

      1. TiT,
        Well said.
        The entire LGBTQ+ community is under assault over the trans and the “minor attracted persons” stance.
        Many of the LGBTQ+ community rejects the concept of grooming underage children, relations or pedophile, but MSM ignores or censors them. PayPal closed Gays Against Groomers account.
        If anything those who promote the pre-tween and tween trans, or “minor attracted persons” have done more damage to the LGBTQ+ community. They have set the LGBTQ+ community back years.
        Note, I have friends, family that are of the LGBTQ+ community, to include a near and dear friend whom is trans.

    2. Diversity (i.e. color judgment, class-based bigotry)? Perhaps “Respect for Marriage Act” that codifies bigotry under the law? Why the inclusion of couplets and arbitrary exclusion of other loving unions? The conflation of sex and gender? The political congruence (“=”) of male and female? The Pro-Choice ethical religion? Not even this trans/homosexual female is so deluded about biological and social distinctions and the capricious discrimination of Rainbow banner (i.e. albinophobic symbol) advocates and activists.

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