If the Obama Administration has its way, the 1st Amendment will be subject to review by the United Nations.
The UN is pushing member nations to adopt something they call UN resolution 16/18. This is a resolution- proposed by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, which is made up of 56 Islamic states- which would criminalize "hate speech" targeting Muslims.
This wholly un-Constitutional proposal was first floated in the aftermath of 9/11 amid fears that American Muslims would be unfairly targeted for abuse. The Bush Administration rightly rejected it. As Forbes notes,
Previous versions of the Resolution, which sought to criminalize blasphemous speech and the “defamation of religion,” were regularly rejected by the American delegation and by the US State Department, which insisted that limitations on speech – even speech deemed to be racist or blasphemous – were at odds with the Constitution. But this latest version, which includes the “incitement to imminent violence” phrase – that is, which criminalizes speech which incites violence against others on the basis of religion, race, or national origin – has succeeded in winning US approval –despite the fact that it (indirectly) places limitations as well on speech considered “blasphemous.”
Lovely. 56 Islamic nations have drafted a proposal that would make blasphemous speech (as defined by Muslims) illegal, and the American President supports this notion.
Let's note the Left's hypocrisy on this, since they would never dream of trying to criminalize speech that Christians or Jews might deem blasphemous. If any other President supported such a measure, we would all assume he'd been drugged and brainwashed. With Obama, it's par for the course.
The ostensible purpose of the measure is to outlaw speech which constitutes incitement of violence based on religion, race, or nationality. Sounds reasonable, right? Well, yeah, except violence is already illegal, and conspiracy to commit violence- meaning one person talks to another and then they together commit an act of violence- is also already illegal.
Particularly troubling is the fact that this law wouldn't in any way inhibit Arab nations from teaching school children that Jews are evil and must be destroyed, or that America is the Great Satan, because they teach things as fact the same way American schools teach 1 plus 1 equals 2. Only Western style democracies will find themselves affected.
Indeed, as M. Zuhdi Jasser, an observant American Muslim and the founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, remarked in an e-mail, “Anyone who believes that Resolution 16’18 is some kind of a breakthrough is sadly being duped by the most obvious Islamist double discourse. The shift from ‘defamation’ to ‘incitement’ does nothing at all to change the basic paradigm where Islamist nations remain in the offense, continuing to put Western, free nations on the defense.” Rather, said Jasser, “We should be putting Islamist autocracies on the defense and then simply reiterate that our First Amendment principles already protect the rights of all minorities — whether Muslim or otherwise — and that the best standard of free speech is the American one. Beginning to categorize speech as ‘incitement’ is a slippery slope that could open the floodgates for any post-tragedy analysis to indict what would otherwise be free speech absurdly as incitement in some far-fetched cause-effect analysis that would depend on proving that speech causes violence.”
Because who, exactly, arbitrates what is “incitement to imminent violence”? Violence by whom? If drawing a caricature of the Prophet incites violence by Islamic radicals to the tune of riots, arson, and murder, all sanctioned by the IOC itself – then drawing such a caricature (or writing a book like the Satanic Verses) will now constitute a criminal act. And that is exactly what the OIC was aiming for. It is also in direct violation of the principles of Western democracy – and the First Amendment.
When the government can tell you what to say, and what not to say, all hope for lasting freedom is gone. Two friends talking over coffee and discussing politics, or religion, or any controversial subject could be considered in violation of this proposal. A Christian evangelist standing at the pulpit, calling Christ the Messiah could be considered blasphmeous. An atheist posting hateful comments about Christianity on Facebook could be considered blasphemous under the law.