Despite the rally around free speech after the Charlie Hebdo attack earlier this year, it seems that some Western countries are not practicing what they preach.
Eric Brazau was recently arrested and denied bail in Canada for a crime related to Islam. No, this was not a terror plot to blow up civilians, or a call to support the Jihadists of the Middle East. What did Brazau do to deserve this arrest? He stated he hated Islam and was charged with committing a hate crime for doing so.
Brazau was previously arrested in 2014 for distributing anti-Islam flyers. As if this complete joke of an arrest was not event, when put in front of a judge, Brazau was told, “you had a ticket to ride, not a pass to harass.”
Brazau was given a sentence of 18 months in prison, along with an additional 2 years of probation upon his release. During this 2 year probation period, the judge also ordered a weapons ban, since in the judge’s words, “words are weapons, too.
Since when do Western countries deny their citizens the right to freedom of speech? How can countries denounce the crimes committed against free speech in acts of terror like Charlie Hebdo, but then inflict these harsh sentences on someone who practices free speech themselves? All Western countries, not just America, must come together in a fight to protect one of our most valuable rights as individuals, our freedom of speech.