How to save Labour from their Religious Hate Speech Law minefield


Let me begin by being very clear.

I don’t believe for one second that there is any malice or ulterior motive in these hate speech laws.

I’ve talked to lots of the people involved in this behind the scenes and I don’t sense any thirst to strangle off free speech.

I believe this Religious Hate Speech law is the conclusion to a terrible act of terrorism conducted against a religious minority in NZ whom we wish to protect.

However, the solution that has been forged here opens a range of outcomes that could be totally counter productive and actually end up protecting groups like Scientology.

Any Religious Hate Speech Law must be so defined and narrow that it can’t be used by religious fear grifters attempting to use the law for their own promotion and legitimacy.

It also can not include mockery because fuck it, religions should be mocked and if mockery is included you get perverse outcomes like the Life of Brian being banned.

Labour must pass something because it has wasted an enormous amount of political capital on this, but it must be so limited that it can’t cause mutations elsewhere. So the law should be as basic as:

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‘You can not incite violence against others based on their Religion’.

This would be a simple thing to pass and would make a very clear demarcation line between offensive criticism and threatening criticism.

Likewise the issues regarding gender, disability and sexual orientation –

‘You can not incite violence against others based on their gender, disability or sexual orientation’.

It is currently illegal to threaten or harass people in NZ, we should be putting more resource and Policing muscle to enforce the current laws on harassment and threats than open the floodgates on what is and isn’t hate speech.

In 2018, I warned the woke middle class identity politics activists that if they kept cancelling and deplatforming free speech they would inadvertently awaken the dormant political fault line of ACT.

In 2018 ACT polled .7%.

After the woke middle class identity politics activists handed David Seymour the free speech ammunition, ACT are now on 12.5%

If the woke middle class identity politics activists have finished fucking the Left over with their micro aggression policing triggers as social policy, can we please bury this hate speech bullshit and start focusing on policy that will actually make a  material difference in peoples lives rather than alienating voters by criminalising the misuse of pronouns?


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    • Martyn Bradbury wants to protect free speech by limiting the law change to the statements (1) ‘You can not incite violence against others based on their religion’, and (2) ‘You can not incite violence against others based on their gender, disability or sexual orientation’.

      But why mention religion, gender, disability, or sexual orientation? Surely it would be as effective, or more effective, for the law simply to state that:
      ‘It shall be an offence to incite violence against any person or group of people’.

  1. Well that would be terrible if the new laws ended up protecting Scientology, wouldn’t it Martyn! But not so bad if it protected Islamists?

    I agree that “inciting violence” is the appropriate threshold. That way, someone who mocks (say) Islam won’t be criminalized, even if some Muslims are “offended”.

    You say there is no sinister intent behind these laws. Why then isn’t LINO drawing the line at inciting violence, instead of the proposed vague wording that leaves the door open for woke judges to suppress free speech?

  2. Interesting that these ‘hate speech’ laws are happening in all the ‘western countries’ at the same time. Maybe Labour can’t actually be saved from them as is. Speech will be monitored, controlled and wrong speech and wrong think will be punished. If packaged the right way, everything can be a ‘religion’ and anyone at any given time can be accused, charged and convicted of heresy.
    Be prepared to expect the Inquisition.

  3. That’s not simple at all: what is incitement?, what is violence?, how is incitement threatening?, with provocation no longer a defence for some time why should incitement be illegal?

    People are legally responsible for any violence, threats or, harassment they commit in spite of provocation – while provokers hold no liability – why shouldn’t incitement be the same?

  4. “I believe this Religious Hate Speech law is the conclusion to a terrible act of terrorism conducted against a religious minority in NZ whom we wish to protect”

    How will these new laws help stop random people with guns from going to a place of worship and killing people?

    This is just another censorship flex. show us plebs who has the power and control. Word things ambiguously so that the law can be used for all manner of purposes too no doubt.

    Given Islam’s history, and Christianity’s as well, I don’t think these religions need extra protection as usually it is the non believers who are on the receiving end of real violence carried out by the mad religious folk

    • Here’s some food for thought: the first few paragraphs of an editorial essay in The New York Times:

      There Are No Lone Wolves
      Nov. 19, 2022
      By The Editorial Board of The New York Times

      Sometime in May 2020, Payton Gendron, a 16-year-old in upstate New York, was browsing the website 4chan when he came across a GIF.

      It was taken from a livestream recording made the previous year by a gunman as he killed 51 people and wounded more than 40 others at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand. The killer had written a manifesto explaining that he was motivated by the fear of great replacement theory, the racist belief that secretive forces are importing nonwhite people to dilute countries’ white majorities.

      Seeing the video and the manifesto “started my real research into the problems with immigration and foreigners in our white lands — without his livestream I would likely have no idea about the real problems the West is facing,” Mr. Gendron wrote in his own manifesto, posted on the internet shortly before, officials say, he drove to a Tops grocery store in Buffalo and carried out a massacre of his own that left 10 Black people dead.

      The authorities say Mr. Gendron’s attack in May mimicked the massacre in Christchurch not just in its motivation but also in tactics. He reduced his caloric intake and cataloged his diet to prepare physically, as the Christchurch killer did. He practiced shooting. He wrote slogans on his rifle, as the Christchurch gunman did. He livestreamed his attack with a GoPro camera attached to his helmet, with the idea of inspiring other attacks by fellow extremists. Mr. Gendron’s screed ran to 180 pages, with 23 percent of those pages copied word-for-word from the Christchurch killer’s manifesto, according to an investigative report on the attacks released last month by New York’s attorney general, Letitia James.

      On the day of the shooting, State Senator James Sanders echoed the horrified response of many: “Although this is probably a lone-wolf incident, this is not the first mass shooting we have seen, and sadly it will not be the last,” he said.

      It’s unfortunate that the term “lone wolf” has come into such casual use in the years since the Sept. 11 attacks. It aims to describe a person — nearly always a man — who is radicalized to violence but unconnected to an organized terrorist group like Al Qaeda. But it is wrong to think about violent white supremacists as isolated actors.

      There are formal white supremacist organizations going by names like Atomwaffen Division (Canada, Germany, Italy, Britain, United States), Honor and Nation (France), the All-Polish Youth (Poland). But while the majority of adherents to the white supremacist cause aren’t directly affiliated with these groups, they describe themselves as part of a global movement of like-minded people, some of whom commit acts of leaderless violence in the hopes of winning more adherents and destabilizing society.

      The atomized nature of the global white extremist movement has also obscured the public’s understanding of the nature of their cause and led to policy prescriptions that aren’t enough to address the scope of the threat. Thoughts and prayers alone will not solve the problem, nor will better mental health care, important though all those things are. One missing piece of any solution is acknowledging that right-wing extremist violence in the United States is part of a global phenomenon and should be treated that way.

      • I’ve just watched Dahmer on Netflix. Strangely I don’t feel the urge to bulk buy sleeping tablets, sulphuric acid and an electric drill.

      • It’s worth it because freedom of speech is our most precious possession.
        Without it, people like Adern who believes people shouldn’t be allowed to “weaponise” (i.e. express) their opinions would do what nasty little dictators do.
        Don’t want to use someone’s preferred cat pronouns (it’s a thing), jail for you.
        And please don’t say it couldn’t happen, they tried to introduce this law over in Canada.

      • … and that is the price that will be paid due to the almost total failure of Labour and the Greens to deliver on their promises. Plus with ACT, we’ll see a lot of the nonsense firearms laws rolled back.

        • And children in ankle bracelets and 100s of thousands without an income and tossed to the lions and many, many more shootings and deaths of police. That is the price that will be paid due to Acts appalling policies.

        • And we’ll see this…

          Cut and freeze the Minimum wage
          Interest back on all student loans
          No Kiwsaver subsidy
          Cancel winter energy payment
          Dump all climate crisis legislation
          no more best start payments for families with new borns
          cut welfare payments
          no tax credits for research and development
          cuts to working for families
          $7b a year cut in public services
          Abolish Maori seats
          Abolish Human Rights Commission

          But good for you Richard, it tells us so much about your gun toting, no human rights love for Seymour.

          • You reap what you sow. Want something different? Then Labour needs to end it’s addiction to Neo-liberalism and fix some of the real world problems facing New Zealand. Labour also needs to end it’s divisive campaign of social engineering, otherwise ACT is what you get next year.

    • ACT only cater to selfish people with money, they’re more than willing to walk over anybody else as long as their rich mates make as much money as possible, ACT is the last thing this country needs.

  5. Any hate speech law that would have stopped the protestant reformation (started over 500 years ago & has finished now but was a vital part of shaping today’s society) should not be passed. I follow the idea to love the sinner but hate the sin which is usually a conflict-free way to live & while I don’t approve of the way some people live that is their choice & freedom to choose for ourself & not be forced over personal beliefs is essential.

  6. No legislation will stop a madman, or the insane triggered by unbeknowns. The tragic killing of a Chinese man in Haining St, Wgtn, I think it was, by Lionel Terry, was a fairly graphic illustration of this. Terry believed in the ‘ yellow peril’ and went to the Chinese area where I used to buy my spices and murdered an innocent man going about his business. It’s equally unfortunate that divisive identity politics today see white people categorised as evil colonialist thieves and thugs, including by MP’s who should know better. When the SIS start issuing booklets advising citizens to inform on the neighbours, they could also be viewed as creating counter- productive social undercurrents. Laws against words may not be a good idea at all, if they stifle open discussion.

  7. This law will NEVER be used to protect Muslims. The push for this law goes hand in hand with big Labour donors ordering the Ardern government join the IHRA hate group. Those donors will have this law against ‘religious discrimination’ passed and have the government classify all criticism of the genocide of the Palestinian people as anti-semitism, and it will be used to prosecute anyone who supports human rights.

  8. It wasnt that long ago we had those idiots at Family First walked all over cannabis users spreading misinformation because it went against their religious beliefs, and the govt let them away with it.
    So its perfectly fine now for such religious outfits to spread whatever hate they wish and there isnt anything anyone can do about it.
    More recent is the FIFA world cup and Budweiser having a warehouse full of beer they were prevented from selling because it went against the muslim faith. It is one of the least tolerant religions out there for anyone different but this new hate speech law seems to have been written to cater to them.


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