Danish Member of Parliament (Jesper Langballe) Guilty of “Insult[ing] or Denigrat[ing]” Muslims

Here are the views that it is a crime in Denmark to express (according to Danish Free Press Society and IceNews):

Of course Lars Hedegaard shouldn’t have said that there are Muslim fathers who rape their daughters when the truth instead seems to be that they make do with killing daughters (so-called honour killings) –- and moreover turn a blind eye to rapes by uncles.

According to Langballe, Danish law does not allow truth as a defense; it simply provides, “Whoever publicly … issues a … communication by which a group of persons are threatened, insulted or denigrated due to their race, skin colour, national or ethnic origin, religion or sexual orientation is liable to a fine or incarceration for up to two years.” So the quoted views are banned even if one can show that there indeed are such Muslim fathers, or that such behavior is more common among Muslims than among others.

Because the law does not recognize the defense of truth, Langballe pleaded guilty; you can read his statement here. This happened last month, but I just learned of it, and thought it important to note it.

The person about whose statement Langballe was speaking — Lars Hedegaard, president of the Danish Free Press Society — “is facing criminal trial [scheduled to start Jan. 24, 2011] followed by a libel suit.” According to an opinion piece in The Spectator,

[Hedegaard] stated about Muslim ‘honour’ violence within families: “They rape their own children.” In vain did Hedegaard explain the following day that obviously he had not meant by this that all Muslims engage in such practices, any more than saying ‘Americans make good films’ means that all Americans make good films; in vain did he adduce copious evidence of concern — including from Muslim victims themselves — about the amount of sexual and ‘honour’ violence, including rape and incest, within Muslim families.

Unfortunately, I could find little seemingly objective news reporting of these incidents in the English-language press. (I found a few, but they were quite short.) If you know of some — or can translate some foreign-language sources — I’d love to see them.

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