|Tuesday, 10 August 2004||
The imprisonment of a Christian preacher in Sweden for offending homosexuals reveals Sweden as a sinister police state eager to deny freedoms of speech and worship, says the Libertarian Alliance (http://www.libertarian.co.uk), the radical free market and civil liberties think tank and pressure group. It calls on The European Commission to suspend Swedish Membership of the European Union pending a full human rights investigation.
Ake Green is pastor of a Pentecostal congregation in Malmo in Sweden. In 2003, he preached a sermon during which he referred to homosexuality as “abnormal, a horrible cancerous tumour in the body of society.” He also quoted some of the standard biblical injunctions against homosexuality. He was denounced to the authorities and charged under “hate crime” legislation passed in 2002. He stood trial in January 2004, and was in July sentenced to imprisonment for one month Comment
Libertarian Alliance Director of Communications, Dr Sean Gabb commented:
“This is an outrageous attack on rights of speech and worship. It is a denial of some of the most fundamental freedoms that we in Europe at the beginning of the 21st century thought could be taken for granted.
“The Libertarian Alliance calls on the European Commission to suspend Swedish membership of the European Union while a full human rights investigation is mounted in the country. We call on Sweden to be treated as Austria was when it elected a government of the “far right” – though Austria was not accused of having breached any human rights, whereas Sweden glories in its authoritarian bigotry.
“We shall ourselves be making an official submission to the United Nations about this denial of the right to freedom of speech and worship.”
The Libertarian Alliance believes in the right to freedom of speech. This includes, though is not limited to, the right to say anything about public policy or alleged matters of fact. If someone wants to say that homosexuals are the spawn of Satan, or that black people are morally or genetically inferior to whites, or that the holocaust did not happen (but should have), or that the Prophet Mohammed was a demon-possessed, epileptic paedophile, that is his right. If he causes offence, hard luck on those offended. They have no right to legal protection against such views.
The libertarian position of homosexuality is equally predicable. The Libertarian Alliance believes that consenting adults have the right to do as they please without intervention by the law. But freedom for homosexuals does not mean legal privilege against the hatred and contempt that others – however unjustly – may feel for them.”
The Libertarian Alliance advocates the following with regard to freedom of speech: