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Jun 15 2013

A particulary stupid boarding school

Remember Torcant Torcant’s guest post on Sevan Nişanyan? Later he sent me a link to an interview with Nişanyan.

2. Prosecutors have accused you of “overstepping the boundaries of freedom of speech and criticism.” What is your response to this accusation?

The quality of legal education in Turkey is abysmal. Evidently this young prosecutor was under the illusion that saying something mildly distasteful to the prevailing religious opinion is beyond the boundaries of free speech.

Nicely put.

7. In your article, you said you argued that hate speech is only criminal if it actually puts the rights or security of a vulnerable group in jeopardy. You wrote the blog post in response to the furor around the film. What in particular struck a chord in you and compelled you to write about it? Did you expect the commotion it caused?

There was an uproar here last year over that cheapo Muhammed film, and several top politicians close to the prime minister took the opportunity sound out a new Hate Speech Law curtailing “disrespect” of Islamic values. I thought then (and I still think now) that this is a serious threat to public freedoms. I had the urge to discuss the idea of “hate speech” and its limits.
I confess that this article by Daniel Pipes http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/09/24/mocking-muhammad-is-not-hate-speech/ was the immediate source of inspiration for my note. I am not a fan of either Mr. Pipes or Fox News. But I felt they had a good point here.
A comrade.

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