The dictator-dominated global body is waging a full-blown assault on free-speech rights
Image Credits: Nicolas Raymond viaFlickr
Under the guise of advancing what the United Nations refers to as “human rights,” the dictator-dominated global body is waging a full-blown assault on free-speech rights by pressuring governments to criminalize so-called “hate speech.”
Indeed, working alongside radical government-funded activist groups and anti-liberty politicians around the world, the UN and other totalitarian-minded forces have now reached the point where they openly claim that what they call “international law” actuallyrequires governments to ban speech and organizations they disapprove of. Critics, though, are fighting back in an effort to protect freedom of speech — among the most fundamental of all real rights.
While Americans’ God-given right to speak freely is firmly enshrined in the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment, the UN and its hordes of “human rights” bureaucrats are currently terrorizing and bullying the people of Japan — among others — in an effort to drastically curtail speech rights. Pointing to a tiny group of anti-Korean activists holding demonstrations in Japan, politicians and self-styled promoters of “human rights” have also joined the UN in its Soviet-inspired crusade to ban free expression. The Japanese Constitution, however, like the American one, includes strong protections for freedom of speech. Still, that has not stopped the UN from seeking to impose its radical speech restrictions on Japan anyway.
At least two separate UN outfits, the dictator-dominated “Human Rights Commission” and the UN “Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination,” have condemned Japan so far this year for failing to criminalize free speech while demanding immediate bans. The UN racial committee even released a report calling on Japanese politicians to overthrow the nation’s Constitution and take “appropriate steps to revise its legislation” by criminalizing and punishing speech, rallies, and groups considered “hateful.” The outfit also demanded a “comprehensive law prohibiting racial discrimination.”
The “human rights” committee, meanwhile, demanded that Japanese authorities “prohibit all propaganda advocating racial superiority or hatred that incites to discrimination, hostility or violence.” Even speech on the Internet is in the UN’s “human rights” crosshairs for regulation and prohibition. While anti-Korean speeches and rallies by the Japanese group “Zaitokukai” are being used as the pretext to terrorize Japan into changing its policies and infringing on citizens’ constitutionally guaranteed freedoms, the UN’s anti-free speech scheming has far larger aims.
Incredibly, despite constitutional protections for free speech and the lack of any statute even purporting to criminalize free expression, Japanese courts have actually been relying on UN agreements to punish alleged “hate” speakers. Last summer, the high court in Osaka upheld a previous ruling against the Zaitokukai organization for its speeches and rallies outside of a North Korean propaganda “school” in Kyoto that brainwashes children into worshipping mass-murdering North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un. The group was ordered to pay more than $100,000 for its supposed hate speech — again, despite the Constitution’s protections for free speech and the lack of a “hate speech” statute in Japan.
Also alarming to critics is that top members of the Japanese political class are already plotting to use “hate speech” laws to criminalize criticism of government and politicians. According to a recent report in the Economist magazine, revisionist politician Sanae Takaichi said “hate-speech” laws should be used to stop people from protesting government actions outside of Parliament. Lawmakers must be free to work “without any fear of criticism,” she explained, sending shivers down the spines of free-speech advocates. Apparently the totalitarian sentiment is widespread among the political class, though Japan’s justice minister has so far resisted UN calls to pursue “hate speech” schemes.
Much of the UN’s lobbying against freedom of speech in Japan, as in other nations, revolves around the “International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination” and similar planetary thought-police regimes. The radical UN agreement, which took effect in 1969 but was not ratified by Japanese authorities until the 1990s, purports to criminalize “discriminatory expression.” Under the global body’s anti-free-speech regime, national governments are supposedly “required” to ban all speech that might justify or promote racial hatred, hostility, or discrimination — and punish the perpetrators.
Then UN “Human Rights” Czar Navi Pillay, a South African who was widely ridiculed after her half-baked attacks on the United States in recent years, also offered some chilling insight into the dictator-dominated global body’s views on liberty. “Defining the line that separates protected from unprotected speech is ultimately a decision that is best made after a thorough assessment of the circumstances of each case,” she argued. In other words, any time somebody speaks, he or she must wonder whether their speech might run afoul of dubious UN notions of “hate speech” — to be decided after the fact.
Of course, the issue at hand is not really “hate speech.” Threats and incitement to violence are already crimes in Japan and virtually the entire civilized world, so no new statutes are needed to rein in the excesses of racist hatemongers. Instead, the real issues include freedom of speech, freedom of the press, real rights, national sovereignty, constitutional governance, and self-government. While racist speech is certainly ignorant, tasteless, and collectivist, using laws to criminalize it is not only futile — as has been shown on countless occasions — but extraordinarily dangerous. Instead, the free marketplace of ideas is the best way to counter hatemongering.
Even the notion of “hate speech,” though, has long been used to persecute innocent people for their political and religious beliefs. Across much of Europe, for instance, pastors and street preachers are regularly arrested and jailed for referring to homosexual activity as a sin. In Sweden, under the guise of waging war on “hate speech,” the Justice Ministry even investigated the Holy Bible. Meanwhile, at the global level, a broad coalition of Islamic dictators is seeking to criminalize criticism of Islam, its prophet, and the Quran worldwide using UN agreements.
Written by ALEX NEWMAN
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