The Deputy Minister of Justice, John Jeffrey has denied making the controversial statement attributed to him in The Times "The bill will criminalise preaching against homosexuality, racial discrimination and so forth. But it does not intend to criminalise the Bible, Quran or infringe the rights of people to practice their religious beliefs. The bill is not about religion but seeks to encourage tolerance. We do not want to censor the teachings of preachers." https://goo.gl/1KWRUV In response to our query, Jeffrey wrote "In fact I said the bill will NOT criminalise preaching against homosexuality."
We know however that regardless of the Ministers personal intent, this is the intent and on the agenda of the pro-homosexual lobby groups since 1992 "3. It shall be unlawful to promote homophobia and teachings that present the notion of lesbian/gay behaviour as being sinful." (Gay and Lesbian Rights Charter, UCT Developing Justice Series, Derek Fine, 1992). Christian media that mention homosexuality are regularly contacted by these lobbies with this demand.
RE-INTERPRETING LAWS AND BREAKING AGREEMENTS
We also know that regardless of the governments current intent, the social revolutionaries will maintain their interpretation in future, as they are doing overseas - and will break any promises of an exception of protection for religious freedom. A parallel example was that in 1996, the proposed first draft abortion law contained a conscientious objection clause for medical workers to opt out of assisting with abortions. This was then removed from the final draft bill with the reason that it was obvious from the Bill of Rights.
Nevertheless, one year later, the Department of Health passed an unconstitutional regulation requiring medical practioners to refer patients for abortion, breaking their previous promise and leaving thousands of medical practitioners vulnerable to prosecution. Christian medical workers will not refer for abortion based on conscience reasons. The Department of Health also dismissed an anti-abortion doctor and refused employment to gynaecologists and specialist nurses unwilling to do abortions, forcing emigration of these skilled workers and now contributing to a national shortage of gynaecologists. The dismissed anti-abortion doctor was eventually reinstated on appeal with back pay. Most however do not have the stomach for an eighteen month court battle and quietly slip out of state employment. The pro-abortion lobby continued to push the re-interpretation of the law that any refusal to assist with abortion constituted 'obstruction of access', a definition in the law originally meant to apply to physical blocking of clinic entrances. This re-interpretation was then repeated endlessly causing many healthworkers - and even the chairman of the Parliamentary Health Portfolio Committee James Ngculu and a Western Cape State Law Adviser to believe it was correct - and make threats against doctors refusing to comply. We know from the Qwelane case and various other SA Human Rights Commission cases, that there is an army of lawyers acting pro-bono or in state capacity who would like to similarly stretch the interpret of 'hate speech' to shut down any expression of viewpoint against homosexuality.
HARASSMENT AGAINST FREE SPEECH UNDER GUISE OF HATE SPEECH PROTECTIONS
In 2015, Ms Zizipho Pae, Vice Chairperson of the University of Cape Town SRC had an attempt to push her out, including a kangaroo court process and vandalism of her office and threats against her on her facebook page, based on such misinterpretation of the law. This was rebutted with a direct quotation from the 1996 Constitutional Court judgement on sodomy, which affirms the right of religious people to object to sodomy. Ms Pae was eventually reinstated, but the level of verbal abuse and harassment she suffered on an ongoing basis including after reinstatement, serves as a 'chilling effect' against any more such views. Ironically, her original statement against same-sex marriage was not hatred but those of the political correctors were guilty of hatred against her.
Nevertheless, this new culture of facist political correctness under the pretext of preventing 'hate speech' is not restricted to those opposing homosexuality. Last week, a high profile American homosexual who happened to support immigration restrictions was prevented through violence from speaking at the University of Berkley California on the allegation that his views against immigration constituted 'hate speech'. Ironically, it was this same 'anti-hate speech' lobby that gave publicity to the social media comments of Penny Sparrow and the views of Steve Anderson (who had zero religious constituency support in South Africa and almost nothing in the USA). Without their help, these people would never spread their views to more than about 50 people. These people and the tactics they use, are unfortunately the main inflamation of the problem they claim to solve.
Speech inciting violence is already illegal under the Intimidation Act. The unanimous view of NGOs commenting on the Film and Publications Amendment Bill to Parliament in October 2016 (which included a 'hate speech' clause) was that there should be no extention of definition of unprotected speech from that in the current Bill of Rights. You can email Deputy Minister John Jeffrey to ask for the scrapping of the 'hate speech and hate crimes bill' DeputyMinister@justice.gov.za and the Ministry of Justice at firstname.lastname@example.org
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