Yet More Assaults on Speech

I am a bit late on this, but this is from Jonathon Turley in the USAToday:

Around the world, free speech is being sacrificed on the altar of religion. Whether defined as hate speech, discrimination or simple blasphemy, governments are declaring unlimited free speech as the enemy of freedom of religion. This growing movement has reached the United Nations, where religiously conservative countries received a boost in their campaign to pass an international blasphemy law. It came from the most unlikely of places: the United States.

While attracting surprisingly little attention, the Obama administration supported the effort of largely Muslim nations in the U.N. Human Rights Council to recognize exceptions to free speech for any "negative racial and religious stereotyping." The exception was made as part of a resolution supporting free speech that passed this month, but it is the exception, not the rule that worries civil libertarians. Though the resolution was passed unanimously, European and developing countries made it clear that they remain at odds on the issue of protecting religions from criticism. It is viewed as a transparent bid to appeal to the "Muslim street" and our Arab allies, with the administration seeking greater coexistence through the curtailment of objectionable speech. Though it has no direct enforcement (and is weaker than earlier versions), it is still viewed as a victory for those who sought to juxtapose and balance the rights of speech and religion.

I continue to be confused why the Left in this country is so absolutely hostile to Baptists in Alabama but are so deferential to Muslims in Saudi Arabia.  Is it simply because one group makes credible threats of violence while the other does not?


  1. Peter:

    Well I guess if the Muslims are supporting it then of course they won't be disparaging the Jews, the Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, etc. Maybe we can do a trial run in Saudi Arabia to see how well this curtailment of free speech criticizing religions will work. I wait with baited breath to see sharia law imposed on a Muslim for making slanderous or defamatory statements about Jews.

  2. Evil Red Scandi:

    It's because Baptists in Alabama are statistically more likely to oppose their progressive agenda. Nothing more, nothing less. These people have no principles other than power.

  3. MJ:

    Is it simply because one group makes credible threats of violence while the other does not?

    Why would we believe the latter cannot or would not make credible threats? Remember the Olympic Park bombing? The same guy (Eric Rudolph) bombed two abortion clinics and a lesbian nightclub. And lets not forget the crowd at the Westboro Baptist Church.

  4. Fred from Canuckistan . . .:

    And the Babtists don't hold vast amounts of US debt and are not being depended on to buy ever more vast amounts of debt, just so the Progressives can pretend they are implementing affordable new free goodies for everyone. Wait until our Progressive betters start promising free Unicorns for everyone.

    Obama also doesn't bow in subservience to Babtists like he does to Saudi Kings.

    The Saudi's know that when you pay the piper you do get to call the tunes, as looney as those tunes may be.

  5. m:

    "I continue to be confused why the Left in this country is so absolutely hostile to Baptists in Alabama but are so deferential to Muslims in Saudi Arabia."

    Oh come on. It's because if you're deferential to Muslims you're open-minded and progressive. If you're deferential to Baptists in AL, you're a narrow-minded bigot who hates women.

    Makes as much sense as any of their policies.

  6. Mark:

    The answer to why the Left is hostile to religious people in the United States and deferential to Muslims in Saudi Arabia is because they perceive the Saudi Arabian Muslims as victims and the the religious people of the United States as aggressors. In their world view they always support the victims and oppose the aggressors. They do this regardless of the circumstances because in their "religion" the victim can do no wrong and the aggressor can do no right.

    That is why the Europeanized Left supports the Palestinians over the Israelis despite the fact that Israel is perhaps the most progressive left government on the face of the earth. They denounce maybe the most pronounced practitioners of human rights, including women and gay rights while they praise and seek the favor of Palestinian and Muslim groups that have 10th century viewpoints on these issues.

    WHen you use this aggressor-victim model you can explain almost all of liberal behaviour. Bankers, Wall Street, rich people, United States, Israel, Christians=Aggressors=Bad in everything they do. Poor people, minorities, Palestinians, Muslims, gays=Victims=Right in everything they do. Therefore they must control government to punish the aggressors and reward the victims. When you look at it this way it is almost simple and you can understand the almost irrational policy positions that they advance.

  7. Methinks:

    Ummmm.....excuse me, MUSLIM "Jews are pigs and apes and all Western women are whores" countries want a ban on negative racial and religious stereotyping?

  8. morganovich:

    i don;t know why you are all so surprised.

    this is the UN.

    you ever look at the makeup of the UN human rights council?

    rawanda, iran, saudi arabia, sri lanka, serbia...?

    the whole place is a joke.

  9. nom de guerre:

    "credible threats of violence" have no more to do with it than the weather. it's real simple:
    *group A is foreign, non-christian, and rejects western values.
    *group B is the EXACT opposite of group a, plus they're those icky rednecks like the ones you see in the movies.

    since the leftist mindset has very clearly defined imperatives, it's easy for them. those imperatives are, in order -
    * leftism over all other political philosophies
    * any nation on earth over the USA
    * black people over all others
    * all other people over white people
    * atheism over all religions
    * all other religions over christianity.
    * gay over straight
    * women over men
    * socialism/communism over capitalism

    and that about covers it. certainly explains why the left overlooks islamic fascism; explains why the left ignores/covers up the 100 million people killed by communism over the last century; also explains why the left and their feminist brigades stood silently by and said nothing when OJ decapitated his (white) wife and that (white) guy. they know that list of priorities like schoolkids (once) knew their multiplication tables.

  10. frankania:

    I am so worried about those Amish terrorists. Why, they drive their buggies on our highways without electric tail lights; they don't send their kids to our public schools; they don't use lightbulbs--only candles. And look at the racial balance at their barn/raisings....shocking

  11. John Moore:

    Around the world, free speech is being sacrificed on the altar of religion.

    Correction: the altar of radical Islam.

    In the US and Europe, Christianity has been under fierce assault for decades by progressives, to the point that the First Amendment's *protections* of religion has been transmuted into a prohibition of religion.

  12. spiro:

    Too bad this wasn't enacted a few years ago. I would have loved to see the heated game of "Victim's Poker" played between the gays and the Mormons in California after prop 8.
    Nothing tickles my funny bone more than progressive policies taken literally and imploding in on themselves, but that's just me.

  13. ArtD0dger:

    [I continue to be confused why the Left in this country is so absolutely hostile to Baptists in Alabama but are so deferential to Muslims in Saudi Arabia. Is it simply because one group makes credible threats of violence while the other does not?]

    No. Maybe in Europe to a certain extent, but not here.

    The left mocks the proposition that this backwards Islamic cult could be an obstacle to their grand progressive designs, but they are more than happy to use them for unprincipled triangulation against a greater foe.

  14. Chris K.:

    I think Mark hit the nail on the head with his analysis.

  15. Val:

    Mark - you nailed it.

  16. Don Draper:

    Mark, your world view on this topic is one of the best explanations for otherwise bizarre behavior by the left. It is the only rational explanation of why the US is tolerant of a country that has repeatedly said they would like to destroy us while at the same time pursuing nuclear weapons.

    And oh by the way Israel and the US are the first targets.

  17. SteveH:

    I think it's like a parent trying to keep their own on course and being just too busy to worry much about the kid in the next neighborhood down the highway.

    I'm guessing it's similar to the reason the Canadians pay so much attention to the US and most Americans never give Canada a single thought.