Hate Speech, Congress and The Prophet by Peter Burrows 1/28/16 firstname.lastname@example.org
Eighty one Democrats and one Republican have cosponsored a House Resolution, H.Res. 569, “Condemning violence, bigotry, and hateful rhetoric towards Muslims in the United States.” This was introduced only 15 days after a Muslim couple killed 14 and wounded 23 in San Bernardino, CA.
The resolution expresses “condolences for the victims of anti-Muslim hate crimes” in America, but no condolences for the 14 killed in San Bernardino or the other 75 Americans murdered by Muslim terrorists in the United States since the Twin Tower tragedy on 9/11/01. In that same time period, only ONE Muslim was killed in a hate crime in the U.S., committed by a white supremacist right after the 9/11 attack. (1)
FBI statistics show that in 2014 there were 1,092 religious hate crimes, 16.3% of them against Muslims and 58.2% against Jews. (2) Wikipedia puts the U.S. Muslim population at 3.3 million and the U.S. Jewish population at 6.8 million. So while Jews outnumber Muslims by a little more than two to one, they suffer hate crimes over three and a half times more often than Muslims.
Where is the House Resolution condemning violence, etc. against American Jews? A cynic would say one isn’t needed because the Jews are already in the Democratic camp, while the Muslims, especially if the Obama Administration carries through with plans to grant around 170,000 visas to Muslim immigrants this year, are a brand new minority that can be appealed to by the time honored tactic of depicting them as “victims” to be rescued by the Democrats.
When combined with other Administration actions to whitewash Islam, the House resolution makes political sense, though not in any other context. For example, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson recently visited a Mosque in Virginia where he said the overwhelming majority of Muslims want to live in peace and anyone who doesn’t understand that “does not understand Islam. The very essence of the Islamic faith is peace.”
Think about that. Our Director of Homeland Security thinks the very essence of Islam is peace when all over the world Muslims are proving otherwise, everyday. (3)
Last December, Attorney General Loretta Lynch, no one to take a back seat when it comes to PC butt kissing, attended a dinner celebrating the 10th university of Muslim Advocates, a lobbying organization that makes sure the First Amendment protects Muslims’ right to undermine our free society.
At that dinner, Lynch said she was concerned about an “incredibly disturbing rise of anti-Muslim rhetoric,” which if it leads to violence against Muslims or people thought to be Muslims, would prompt the DOJ to take action against the hate speechers. House Resolution 569 also “denounces in the strongest term the increase in hate speech–.”
Accusing people of hate speech raises some tricky First Amendment problems. Who defines hate speech? If hate speech is a crime “when it leads to violence,” aren’t Muslims guilty of hate speech when they quote the many parts of the Koran that call for violence against non-Muslims? (4)
Was Donald Trump guilty of hate speech for saying this country should halt Muslim immigration and even Muslim tourism until “our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on”? Hate speech or free speech? Trump’s comment was quickly denounced by the Obama administration, most leading Republicans, Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders et al, only proving that Trump’s statement is a non sequitur because it’s obvious our representatives can’t figure out what’s going on.
A petition in the U.K. has gathered over 600,000 signatures to ban Trump from entering the country because of his comments. He wouldn‘t be the first not allowed in because of anti-Muslim activism, e.g. Robert Spencer, Pamella Geller, and Geert Wilders come to mind. Too bad very few people know who those three are.
You don’t have to go all the way to England to find muddled thinking on free speech. Last March, The Associated Students of the University of New Mexico, the undergraduate student government at UNM, unanimously passed a resolution asking the university administration to publicly denounce Islamophobia, which they define as “a dislike or prejudice against Islam or Muslims, especially as a political force.”
What are these kids thinking? It is precisely as a political force that Islam is such an abomination, as anybody paying attention should know. ISIS has declared itself a caliphate and is proceeding to behead, crucify, rape, enslave and subdue anyone who opposes their Islamic theocracy. All of the atrocious things they are doing are condoned by their religion. They are not “radical” Muslims, they are orthodox Muslims. This is something decent people have a hard time understanding unless they have a knowledge of Islam.
Memo to the ignorant kids at UNM: Objective observers SHOULD dislike Islam and since “prejudice” has become a pejorative, people with knowledge of Islam have every reason to view Muslims with a “healthy skepticism.”
Unfortunately, we are approaching the point where anything that offends anybody can be defined as hate speech, regardless of the veracity of what is said, especially if the offenders are from the political right. An “artist” can put a crucifix in a glass of urine and call it “Piss Christ,” and a dissident can burn the American flag at high noon in the town square, and lots of high-minded people will defend those acts in the name of free speech. If you say that Islam condones pedophilia because Muhammad had sex with a nine-year-old, those same people will accuse you of hate speech.
Occasionally, former President Bill Clinton does something that gets my grudging respect, like his Sister Souljah moment, when he put down that black racist. (Black racist? Hate speech! Hate speech!!)
Last January on NBC’s Late Night with Seth Meyers, he said Islamic politics “advocates the world’s greatest double standard: if you come to our country, we won’t let you worship the way you want, we won’t let you say what you want to say, we won’t let you do what you want to do. However, we have come to your country, therefore we have the right to do whatever we want to do, including kill you if you make us mad.” (5)
(1) Is there anyone reading this article who knew Bill Clinton had said that?
(2) Does his statement constitute hate speech?
(3) Is his statement more or less offensive than Trump’s?
(4) How many signatures are there on a petition to ban Bill Clinton from entering the U.K.?
(5) Do you think there is another great double standard, that being in the mainstream media?
There are two important points to make about what Clinton said. First, if a Republican had said what Clinton did, the media would have raised Hell and dismissed the statement as racist, untrue, xenophobic, whatever. Secondly, what Clinton said was undeniably true. In other words, the media will accept a truth from somebody identified as a liberal, progressive or a Democrat, while the same truth will be dismissed as a lie, hate speech, or political pandering if it comes from the right side of the aisle.
Next week: Part Two
(4) silvercityburro.com Memo to Clueless Republicans: Start Quoting the Koran 11/29/15
(5) http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/7134/islam-islamism-america See summary comments.