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The UK wants to jail people for viewing videos online.   Basically freedom of thought and freedom of speech

The United Kingdom is responding to its severe terror threat with a proposal of lengthy jail sentences for anyone who views "terrorist content" online.

Specifically, sentences of 15 years in prison for such an offense.

But what might constitute terrorist content? According to British Home Secretary Amber Rudd, that concept includes "far-right propaganda."

"I want to make sure those who view despicable terrorist content online, including jihadi websites, far-right propaganda and bomb-making instructions, face the full force of the law," Rudd said in a statement Tuesday.

That statement sends a clear message the British government will use a bill supposedly designed to curtail terrorism as the pretext to shut down speech it doesn’t like. But we shouldn’t be surprised by this idea — restricting internet freedom has been the most popular proposal among British politicians in reaction to recent terror attacks.

British Prime Minister Theresa May proposed this in response to the Manchester bombings and London stabbings, making it a core pitch of hers during the parliamentary elections in June. Instead of trying to restrict immigration from areas known for Islamic extremism, British leaders would rather curb the freedom of their own citizens.


It is undoubtedly true that the internet is providing a fertile recruiting ground for Islamic extremists. But that doesn’t justify using the "full force of the law" against people criticizing Islamic extremism.

Considering the track record of British government and how it handles speech on the internet, it is likely that "far-right propaganda" will be the most affected by a law criminalizing viewing extremist content.

Pretty much after every terror attack in the UK, police show more zeal in arresting "Islamophobes" than they do for jihadis. After a British soldier was beheaded in broad daylight by radical Muslims In 2013, law enforcement arrested several people over Facebook posts criticizing Islam.

After the Manchester bombing, conservative commentator Katie Hopkins was reported to and investigated by London police for a tweet calling for British men to take action against terrorists.

Throughout Europe, hate speech is a serious charge that is used pretty much entirely against right-wing dissidents.

It’s not hard to see what the bureaucrats of the U.K. will do if they had the power to sentence anyone who viewed bad content on the internet to several years in jail. Making or viewing "far-right propaganda" as one of the criteria for the offense offers up numerous possibilities.

Would reading Breitbart fall under that category? Publishing Winston Churchill’s thoughts on Islam? Or how about purchasing a collection of Rudyard Kipling poems?

It’s doubtful that this law will have any effect of curtailing terror on the island, especially when former ISIS militants are returning to the U.K. in droves and leftists want them welcomed with open arms. Censoring the internet will most negatively affect the people wanting to stop the threat of radical Islam and give more unnecessary power to left-wing bureaucrats to determine public discourse.

In America, we thankfully still have the protection of the First Amendment. Britons don’t have the same protection, and if Theresa May’s cabinet gets its way, they’re going to lose even more freedom than they had before.

These are the ones who hate us for our freedoms. They must be stopped.


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Back in 2003... When are you going to stand up for your rights?   (Freedom of speech and freedom of thought are your rights.)


Britons face extradition for 'thought crime' on net

British citizens will be extradited for what critics have called a "thought crime" under a new European arrest warrant, the Government has conceded.

Campaigners fear they could even face trial for broadcasting "xenophobic or racist" remarks - such as denying the Holocaust - on an internet chatroom in another country.

The Government has undertaken that if such "offences" take place in Britain the perpetrators would not be extradited - but it will be for the courts to decide the location of the crime.

This opens up the prospect of a judge agreeing to extradite someone whose observations, though made in Britain, were broadcast exclusively in a country where they constitute a crime.

Legislation now before Parliament will make "xenophobia and racism" one of 32 crimes for which the European arrest warrant can be issued without the existing safeguard of dual criminality. This requires that an extraditable offence must also be a crime in the UK.

Alongside the arrest warrant, EU ministers are negotiating a new directive to establish a common set of offences to criminalise xenophobia and racism.

Countries such as Germany and Austria have crimes such as denying the Holocaust which have no equivalent in Britain. Under current laws, if a British citizen committed this offence in Germany and returned to the UK, he could not be extradited.

However, this will change when the arrest warrant becomes law next year. Lord Filkin, the Home Office minister, told MPs: "If someone went to Germany and stood up in Cologne market place and shouted the odds, denying the Holocaust, and then came back [to Britain], they would be subject to extradition under the European arrest warrant."

Holocaust denial laws are in place in seven EU countries but they would be a big departure for Britain, where a risk of fomenting public disorder is needed before a thought becomes a crime.

A German historian who claimed that Auschwitz prisoners enjoyed cinemas, a swimming pool and brothels was sentenced to 10 months in jail.

Lord Filkin has insisted that no one would be extradited "in respect of conduct which has occurred here and which is legal here". But when he was asked by the European scrutiny committee of the House of Commons whether comments originating in Britain but carried abroad on television or through an internet chatroom would be extraditable, he said: "It will be for the courts to decide."

While he was adamant that a British citizen would not be extradited for a xenophobia or racism offence if part of the conduct took place in the UK, the committee asked whether this principle would be made clear in the Extradition Bill now before Parliament.

The proposed EU directive would extend the offences of racism and xenophobia to include discrimination on the grounds of religious conviction - something that was dropped by the Government more than a year ago following fierce opposition.

Britain has negotiated a deal under which the offences will only apply when they involve incitement to violence. Lord Filkin said this was in line with current UK race laws.

However, Britain has been forced to concede a review after two years at which point the directive could be extended to opinions that are simply considered offensive and not just those likely to incite violence. Agreement on the directive has been held up because some EU countries want a "low threshold for criminality on these issues".

Philip Duly, campaign manager for the Freedom Association, said the Government should protect citizens from extradition for what he called "thought crimes".

He added: "The Government has previously maintained that no one will be extradited for conduct which is not a crime in the UK. But here we have Lord Filkin admitting that there are circumstances which will be decided not by ministers but by courts."


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