Skip to comments.Danish-Iranian artist convicted of racism (Muslim men use Islam to justify violence against women)
Posted on 09/20/2013 12:21:31 PM PDT by knighthawk
Firoozeh Bazrafkan was found guilty of racism after writing in her blog that Muslim men use Islam to justify violence against women
A Danish-Iranian artist was found guilty of racism by the Western High Court on Monday for statements she made about Muslim men.
Firoozeh Bazrafkan was charged with racism after writing in a blog entry, published in Jyllands-Posten newspaper in December 2011, that she was "very convinced that Muslim men around the world rape, abuse and kill their daughters".
She added: "This is, according to my understanding as a Danish-Iranian, the result of a defective and inhumane culture if you can even call it a culture at all. But you can say, I think, that it is a defective and inhumane religion whose textbook, the Koran, is more immoral, deplorable and crazy than manuals of the two other global religions combined."
Appeal to the Supreme Court
Aarhus City Court decided not to convict Bazrafkan under anti-racism legislation, section 266b of the penal code, last December.
The prosecution appealed the decision to the Western High Court, which on Monday found her guilty, handing her a 5,000 kroner fine, or five days in prison.
"The court argued that what I wrote about Muslim men was condescending and a generalisation," Bazrafkan told The Copenhagen Post. "But thats unfair, because there are many Islamic codes that are being used by Islamic men to justify their actions against women and children."
A chain of racist statements
Bazrafkans racism sentence is the fourth in a chain of statements that have resulted in charges under the anti-racism law.
The first was Lars Hedegaard, the leader of the free press society Trykkefrihedsselskabet, who was convicted of racism in 2011 for statements he made in private about Muslim men.
He was cleared in 2012 when the Supreme Court decided that the statements were not made with the intention that they would be publicised.
Jesper Langballe, a former MP for Dansk Folkeparti, was subsequently charged and convicted of racism because of statements he made when defending Hedegaard in an opinion piece in Berlingske newspaper.
Lars Kragh Andersen, a notorious free speech activist, was the third to be charged with racism after writing in an article on 180grader.dk that he was, convinced that Muslim men around the world both abuse and killed their daughters.
It was this passage that Bazrafkan repeated and which resulted in her being charged with racism.
A controversial artist
Bazrafkan a controversial artist known for integrating her Muslim background into her work says that her adaptation and use of Andersen's text was a political happening that was designed to expose the problem with the racism law.
She argues that she was not accusing all Muslim men of using Islamic codes to justify horrific acts against women, only that violence against women and children was often excused by citing Islam.
"Its not the same thing. For example, Muslims around the world protested at the Mohammed cartoons, and doctors around the world misdiagnose patients, but not all Muslims protested, and not all doctors misdiagnose."
She added: "Its idiotic to suggest that I think that all Muslim men are rapists."
High Court unconvinced
The verdict was decided by a panel of three judges and three jurors. Five of the six decided that section 266b of the penal code applied, as her message in the blog was that Muslim men in general commit severe crime.
By publishing the statement in the blog, the defendant presented statements in which a group of people are mocked and degraded because of their belief," the Western High Court stated in its verdict. "We therefore find the defendant guilty."
Bazrafkan said she would rather spend the time in prison than pay the fine, and that she was prepared to take the case to the Supreme Court.
Artist convicted of racism speaks out
Firoozeh Bazrafkan was found guilty of racism for her comments about Muslim men, but she argues that anti-racism legislation is stifling the critique of religion
Danish-Iranian artist Firoozeh Bazrafkan was handed a 5,000 kroner fine on Monday when the Western High Court found her guilty of racism.
She was charged by Aarhus Police of violating anti-racism legislation, section 266 b of the penal code, after publishing a blog entry in Jyllands-Posten newspaper in December 2011, in which she stated:
“I am very convinced that Muslim men around the world rape, abuse and kill their daughters. This is, according to my understanding as a Danish-Iranian, due to a defective and inhumane culture if you can even call it a culture at all. But you can say, I think, that it is a defective and inhumane religion whose textbook, the Koran, is more immoral, deplorable and crazy than manuals of the two other global religions combined.”
Bazrafkan had appropriated the text from an article published by free speech activist Lars Pedersen, who had also been charged and convicted of racism after publishing it on the online newspaper 180grader.dk
An artist with a critical focus on Irans Islamic regime and religion in general, Bazrafkan argues in an interview with The Copenhagen Post that Danish anti-racism legislation should not apply to the critique of religion.
What is your reaction following the High Courts ruling?
Im not sorry for writing the blog in the newspaper but I am disappointed and angry because I should have the right to write and say what I want. My blog in Jyllands-Posten newspaper didnt threaten anyone, it was a criticism of Islamic codes.
Your text was very similar to what Lars Andersen wrote and which resulted in him being convicted under the racism paragraph. Why did you choose to write it?
I copied his text and made some personal additions, that I was a Danish-Iranian. I wrote it as an artistic manifesto to show that we cannot say what we want and we cannot criticise Islamic regimes. I wanted to show Lars support because, as a Danish Iranian, I know what a big problem Islamic regimes are in both Iran and the Middle East. These Islamic codes give men the rights to do whatever they want to women and children and I think its disgusting. They also prevent people in Iran from discussing and saying what they want. This is what I wanted to criticise.
Can you not see why the court found your blog to be offensive?
The court argued that what I wrote about Muslim men was condescending and a generalisation. But thats unfair, because there are many Islamic codes that are being used by Islamic men to justify their actions against women and children.
Its important to remember that I did not write that ALL Muslim men committed horrible acts and used Islamic codes to justify them, I wrote that Muslim men around the world can do these things because it is allowed according to these codes. Its not the same thing. For example, Muslims around the world protested at the Mohammed cartoons, and doctors around the world misdiagnose patients, but not all Muslims protested, and not all doctors misdiagnose.
But there are other religious codes in the world that restrict peoples rights. Are you unfairly singling Islam out for critique?
I have also been critical of Judaism and Christianity but I was born in Iran as a Muslim. I have family members in Iran who dont have the same democratic rights and freedom to express their anger as I do. I do my best to get the point out in my artwork and installations because I want to criticise the Iranian regime my way. If I want to be angry, I should have the right to be angry and call the Islamic regime anything I want. The state shouldnt go in and take my rights.
My point is that I want to give men and women the rights to write whatever they want, I dont care if its stupid or well formulated, people should just have the right to say what they want so long as they dont threaten other people.
Have you been threatened?
One person said he wanted to chop me up and feed me to his dogs. I reported it to the police but they didnt charge him because the threats werent threatening enough. I also know that there are websites where the Iranian secret police discuss wanting to kill me because I am an apostate.
Can you see any need for anti-racism legislation?
My text criticised Muslim men, which does not constitute a race. The text is a critique of religion and the anti-racism legislation should not have applied, it shouldnt be used to protect religion. We should be able to discuss it. My right to criticise religion is even protected by article 10 of the European Court for Human Rights, which protects my freedom of expression and I was disappointed the court did not protect this right.
If people want on or off this list, please let me know.
Muslim is a Race?
Free speech is being murdered.
The Truth will....get you imprisoned.
Islam is a race? Really? Have esteemed leaders around the world become that extremely stupid. And by stupid, I mean utterly and completely pathetically retarded, in all definitions of retarded.
In the frozen brains of the European Left it is.
Anything that comes out of the non-European world is viewed by them as race based and not open to any criticism.
She should take the case to the Supreme Court & further expose the truth about that vile mobster cult.