This is the eleventh in a series of posts on this week’s OSCE “Human Dimension Implementation” meeting in Warsaw. More will be coming later this week. See the list of links at the bottom of this post for previous articles.
The following statement was read by Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff at today’s meeting, in response to discussions about “hate crimes”. It has been videotaped, and will eventually be uploaded and available as an embed.
Statement by Bürgerbewegung Pax Europa
OSCE Human Dimension Implementation Meeting
Working Session 14
Intolerance and Non-Discrimination II
Warsaw, October 3, 2012
BPE addresses the term “hate crime”, rejecting it. Hate is a very personal feeling, one that must not be criminalized One should be free to hate or love, as long as this hatred or love does not lead to violence, which in turn should be dealt with under common criminal law.
Bias is another feeling as well. One is biased daily, e.g. choosing to speak to one person and not another.
Not only do I reject being constantly accused of hatred, I am also wondering whether I personally fall under an OSCE “protected characteristic”. I am of the white race, Western ethnicity, I may or may not be a member of a religion, my languages are English and German, and my sexual orientation is none of anyone’s concern. However, I do feel threatened on a daily basis by gangs attacking “Western dressed” girls, both in my native country, Austria, and in the OSCE region. I fear for my daughter’s safety because of slurs hurled at girls like her like “you racist white bitch”, as is currently happening in many cities. Further information can be provided.
The same is true of people like Kurt Westergaard, Lars, Vilks, Seyran Ates, and Sabatina James, all of whom are either in hiding or under police protection. This is clearly a manifestation of hatred perpetrated against these fine men and women of diverse race and ethnicities.
It is our recommendation that the fight against intolerance and discrimination is applied equally to all existing issues and in line with UN conventions on the matter, i.e. focusing on protecting individual rights and not group rights.