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AFA Invents an Imprisoned Pastor

Buster Wilson of the American Family Association delivered one of his classic spook stories to convince his ignorant and credulous readers that we evil liberals want to lock up all the Christians. In the process, he lied about a case in Canada that I’ve written about before:

As we think about the basics of Biblical morality, today we will discuss the issue of hate speech and the first amendment’s guarantee of freedom of Speech.

While most Americans refuse to believe anyone could ever be imprisoned simply for something they said, the examples of it actually happening are abundant.

In our neighbor to the north, Canada, a local pastor spent 18 months in jail for a sermon he preached about homosexuality. A member complained to the hate speech council and he was found guilty and jailed.

Now for certain, that’s in Canada. But the hate speecher’s in this country are modeling their efforts on those successful hate speech laws in Canada.

The left wants to control the speech of the right, and if left to themselves, they will find a way to elevate hate speech above the freedoms of our precious first amendment!

Yes, the examples of this happening are so “abundant” that he has to find a single case and wildly exaggerate what happened. There is no such case. The closest thing to it is the Stephen Boissoin case, a Canadian pastor who was fined for writing a letter to a newspaper that was anti-gay. Now that’s a ridiculous case and I’ve written about it many times, and Canada’s hate speech laws should be done away with entirely. But no one ever went to jail and even in the case of this fine, it was overturned on appeal.

And even if that story was true, it has nothing to do with the United States, where we have the First Amendment and decades of court precedent that would clearly rule out any such punishment.

Comments

  1. keithb says

    Actually one imprisoned pastor was the guy in New Mexico jailed for street preaching. The ACLU came to his rescue.

  2. raven says

    The holidays are stressful for some people.

    On the internet, I’ve seen in the last few, a huge number of atheist haters and assorted fundie xian bigots crawling out from under their rocks.

    The same goes for the christofascist spokespeople, who seem to be upping their gibberish and claims of fake persecution.

    And now we’ve had two mass shooting incidents in a week.

    The Happy Holidays don’t seem so happy for a lot of people.

  3. raven says

    There are a lot of imprisoned pastors.

    At least one for killing his wife.

    Kent Hovind for tax evasion.

    Many for sexually abusing children.

  4. theguy says

    It’s ironic for the AFA to complain about censorship, since their fundie friends (like the psycho Lively) have lobbied Uganda to imprison and execute gays, and in addition to imprison those who merely advocate for gay rights.

  5. noastronomer says

    “While most Americans refuse to believe anyone could ever be imprisoned simply for something they said…”

    Lot’s of Americans are imprisoned ‘simply’ for something they said.

  6. godlesspanther says

    They believe what they want to believe. The sheep will never look it up, just insist that it really happened.

  7. says

    The left wants to control the speech of the right, and if left to themselves, they will find a way to elevate hate speech above the freedoms of our precious first amendment!

    Uh, has Buster paid attention to the number of right-wingers with actual power who want to elevate speech they hate above those same freedoms?

  8. steve oberski says

    Not only did Boissoin not go to jail, but the Canadian gay advocacy group Egale took a stand in favour of Reverend Boissoin’s right to free speech. Executive director of Egale, Gilles Marchildon, wrote:

    …while it is difficult to support Boissoin’s right to spew his misguided and vitriolic thoughts, support his right, we must. If Boissoin was no longer able to share his views, then who might be next in also having their freedom of expression limited. Traditionally, the (gay) community’s freedom has been repressed by society and its laws.

    And that’s only to be expected as xtian groups like the AFA are working tirelessly ro ensure that homesexuals receive equal treatment under the law …

  9. Michael Heath says

    Buster Wilson writes:

    In our neighbor to the north, Canada, a local pastor spent 18 months in jail for a sermon he preached about homosexuality. A member complained to the hate speech council and he was found guilty and jailed.

    I’m betting this guy got this from another viral conservative email.

  10. sebastianmarch says

    OK, OK. Yes, Christians lie sometimes. But not about the big stuff. You know, the age of the Earth, Noah’s Ark, Jesus rising from the dead, etc.

  11. abb3w says

    In our neighbor to the north, Canada [...]

    …since it didn’t happen, does that count as bearing false witness against one’s neighbor?

  12. dingojack says

    Come on AFA give us a name and a location shouldn’t be too hard right? Since it’s the god’s own truth.
    [not holding my breath on this one].
    Dingo

  13. dingojack says

    Ichthyic – ‘content not available’

    And on a related note anyone got a link to Buster’s actual utterances on this case?

    Dingo

  14. matty1 says

    If they get away with inventing pastors they can make up anything and before long the whole religion will be based on imaginar…

    Oh wait.

  15. dougtaron says

    From Wildon’s blog: “They (Right Eing Watch) claim I made up a bogus story. What i actually did was recite a story from memory that I remember us covering on AFNews some years back. Was my recollection of the story inaccurate? I can’t say. They claim there is no such story. I am digging deeper about my comment and if I made a mistake, Ill have enough integrity to admit it and print a correction.”

    Of course he didn’t wait to confirm the story before proceeding to double down on his position. I’ll bet we don’t hear word one about this when his memory proves to have been faulty.

    http://busterwilson.me/2012/12/14/they-completely-miss-the-point/

  16. dingojack says

    dougtaron – Notice also how he tries to shift the goalposts too. You see the whole point wasn’t that there was a (unnamed) Pastor in an (unnamed) place in Canada who was (allegedly) jailed for preaching a sermon* – oh no – it’s that it’s TERRIBLE that a Commission decided to overthrow the court’s unconstitutional decision. Clearly it would have SO MUCH BETTER this entirely imaginary person had served his totally imaginary sentence. Imagine the imaginary outrage and imaginary persecution-pleasure that would have unleashed. How RRW orgasmic for them!
    @@
    Dingo
    ——–
    * also note that he admits he never researched or fact-checked but presented some vague (alleged) recollection as if it were absolutely a fact.

  17. dougtaron says

    I’ve been checking back in on Wilson’s blog to see if he has responded to the charge that he fabricated the story. And he has! Well, after a fashion. Both the original post where he made the claim, and the one where he acknowledged that the story was “from memory” have vanished. What he has not done is, in his words, “have enough integrity to admit it and print a correction.” Shocking, I know.

  18. billyeager says

    I’m not so sure about the ‘integrity’ doug @21

    I’ve incurred the wrath of pro-homosexual, pro-sodomy enthusiasts once again! . . .I was aware of a story about the Swedish pastor who DID GO TO JAIL for violating hate crime laws in his well documented sermon on the evils of homosexuality! I had the facts of the two stories, the Canadian pastor and the Swedish pastor, mingled into an incorrect finalized recollection for the story I was sharing in order to prove my point.

    You see, after having to deal with the fearsome ‘wrath’ of us pro-sodomy enthusiasts(!) he managed to google himself up some hate crime imprisonment that occurred in another country. Sure, it might not have been Canada and not, therefore, right on ‘Merica’s doorstep, but it did happen on the other side of the world, which is close enough.

  19. billyeager says

    ‘pologies for the back-to-back post but, get this, not only did this asshat cite something that occurred on the other side of the world:

    1. It happened in 2004
    2. He was given a SUSPENDED sentence
    3. The court of appeals overturned the decision and acquitted Åke Green
    4. The Swedish Supreme Court’s review of the case upheald the acquittal

    So not only is this desperate citation 8 years old, Green did not serve any jail time and the conviction was overturned.

    In conclusion, this statement from ‘The Buster Blog’,

    a story about the Swedish pastor who DID GO TO JAIL

    is entirely FALSE.

    As has been said before, why does religion incite so much dishonesty?

  20. dingojack says

    billyeager –

    1.. It happened in 2004
    2. He was given a SUSPENDED sentence
    3. The court of appeals overturned the decision and acquitted Åke Green
    4. The Swedish Supreme Court’s review of the case upheald the acquittal

    Any cites for this?

    How about informing Buster?

    Dingo

  21. dougtaron says

    Dingo, his modus operendi seems to be to hold comments in moderation and then delete the post. I replied to his most recent posting by thanking him for his grace and humility in correcting his error. I doubt very much that the sarcasm will register.

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