The Dutch authorities have arrested the cartoonist Gregorius Nekschot (a pseudonym. Nekschot means deathblow, litt: "shot in the back of the neck" [An interview with Nekschot here]). The judicial authorities in Amsterdam said yesterday that the cartoonist was arrested as a suspect for the criminal offense of "publishing cartoons which are discriminating for Muslims and people with dark skin."
The cartoonist was arrested on Tuesday, while the police searched his house for "discriminating evidence." His computer, backups, usb sticks, mobile phone and a number of drawings were confiscated. Nekschot was released two days later but it is possible that he will be charged following a complaint in 2005 by the Dutch imam Abdul Jabbar van de Ven, an indigenous Dutchman who converted to Islam.[....]
Nekschot, a friend of the late Theo van Gogh, the Dutch film maker who was ritually slaughtered by a Muslim fanatic in 2004, hides his real identity in order to avoid unnecessary risks. Hans Teeuwen, a Dutch stand-up comedian and friend of Nekschot's, told the Dutch media yesterday that the police had told Nekschot as they released him earlier that day that "he has now lost his anonymity." Teeuwen said this was "a rather intimidating remark."
As spokeswoman of Xtra, Nekschot's publisher, said today: "He was arrested with a great show of force, by around 10 policemen." The spokeswoman asked that her name not be used because the cartoonist and publisher have received death threats. Nekschot told the Dutch newspaper Het Parool today that police officers had told him: "What you draw is worse than what they did in Denmark. Do you realize what can happen to you if your identity gets known?" The cartoonist fears for his live if he is being sent to jail. "As the maker of those cartoons my life is in danger in prison," he said.
Nekschot's work is rude and often sexually explicit. As such it is characteristic for the Dutch liberal mentality and not beyond the limit in the Netherlands. In his cartoons, however, he mocks the multicultural society, and that does seem to be beyond all bounds.Dhimmiwatch leads with this:
"We suspect him of insulting people": Dutch cartoonist could face years in prison
He could end up serving more time than some jihadists in European criminal justice systems do on terrorism charges.
A spokeswoman for the Amsterdam public prosecutor, Sanne van Meteren, said Nekschot remains a suspect in a criminal investigation.
"We suspect him of insulting people on the basis of their race or belief, and possibly also of inciting hate," she said.
Each is a crime punishable by up to a year in prison under Dutch hate laws - or two years for multiple offences.
Van Meteren said prosecutors were investigating a complaint that dates to 2005. They are now focusing on eight or nine published cartoons, she said, but prosecutors are not disclosing which ones.
Let's face it: most people in the West do not care at all about freedom of speech. They don't care one little bit. They'll apathetically accept a police state without a complaint. It's the nature of things. Only a few will try to preserve and extend our right to freedom. Yes, there's a high price to pay for it. You might end up in jail. But really, what's the difference? You might get out one day and find yourself in a better place than the one you left rather than languishing in a deteriorating place on the outside. Erich Fromm knew it first-hand. We're learning quickly:
"We have been compelled to recognize that millions in Germany were as eager to surrender their freedom as their fathers were to fight for it; that instead of wanting freedom, they sought ways of escape from it; that other millions were indifferent and did not believe the defense of freedom to be worth fighting and dying for. We also recognize that the crisis of democracy is not a particularly Italian or German problem, but one confronting every modern state. ....
[F]reedom is not less endangered if attacked in the name of anti-fascism than in that of outright Fascism. This truth has been so forcefully formulated by John Dewey that I express the thought in his words: 'The serious threat to our democracy' he says, 'is not the existence of foreign totalitarian states. It is the existence within our own personal attitudes and within our own institutions of conditions which have given a victory to external authority, discipline, uniformity and dependence upon The Leader in foreign countries. The battlefield is also here-- within ourselves and our institutions.' "
Erich Fromm, Escape From Freedom. Avon: New York. !941; rpt 1966; pp. 19-20.
It doesn't matter who you are. If you live in a police state and you don't care, then things will become worse daily. Whether you care or not, daily your life will worsen. So, in the event that things get drastic, we'll stand on the street-corner soon in Vancouver to wave our placards in support of Styne when his hearing comes up. What a great thing to be arrested for fighting for freedom.
No? Then see what it is to live in a prison without even needing to be arrested. Your whole state a prison, and never any escape from it. Your life itself a prison.