No Emdadur, you don\’t understand. This is a badge of honour for us, not you

Emdadur Choudhury, 26, a member of Muslims Against Crusades (MAC), was convicted of public disorder after burning two poppies during the two-minute silence on November 11 last year.

He added: \”I get more when I get a parking ticket.\”

Judge Howard Riddle imposed the low fine despite saying Choudhury was guilty of a \”calculated and deliberate insult to the dead and those who mourn them\”.

\”This fine, I will wear it as a badge on my shoulder. I did it for Allah. I did it to raise awareness that these so-called soldiers are the criminals. They are the ones who should be tried for war crimes.\”

Members of MAC were heard chanting \”British soldiers burn in hell\” before the poppies were set on fire at the front of the demonstration near the Royal Geographical Society in west London, Belmarsh Magistrates heard.

Speaking after the fine was handed down Choudhury was unrepentant. Describing the public order charge against him as “insignificant” he said: \”It is ridiculous for them to find me guilty of this crime which is not really a crime. You can see by the punishment they have given me. It was a political issue.\”

Is it illegal to burn poppies? No.

Is it illegal to insult people? No.

Is it illegal to insult the military? No.

The government? People\’s feelings? The dead? Act like a complete tool?

No, all of these things are entirely legal in our country, for we are a free people.

The maximum punishment under Section 5 of the Public Order Act is a £1,000 fine for using threatening, abusive, or insulting words or behaviour that could cause harassment, alarm or distress.

You need to actually directly harm someone else (harassment, alarm and distress are indeed harms). Or, the other thing that you could have been charged with, behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace, is about you acting as such a tosspot that someone was likely to beat you up.

Freedom of speech really does mean freedom of speech and that we accord that freedom to all, even those we vehemently disagree with, is a badge of honour for us, not for those who speak freely.

As it should be of course and as it isn\’t in all too much of the world.

Do remember that next time someone decides to call Mohammed a paedophile. It\’s legal to insult the memory of the Prophet, to insult your religious beliefs, even to insult you. What would not be legal is to cause harassment, alarm or distress, nor behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace.

Aisha was 9 when he bonked her, you know?

14 comments on “No Emdadur, you don\’t understand. This is a badge of honour for us, not you

  1. I enjoy insulting the Warriors of God as much as the next crusader, but does this Paedo Mo thing actually hold water?

    Back in those days many upper-crust, dynastic marriages (including those between European Christians) were contracted between children or between adults and children. I don’t think this necessarily meant that all such unions were physically consumated on the wedding night.

  2. According to the hadith (and, apart from the Quran, we can have no more accurate a source, or so I am told), engaged at 6, married at 9, consumated 9 or 10 (depending on the author you choose – which is interesting, because they are, I am told, only slightly less divinely inspired truth than the Quran.)

    The interesting thing about the dynastic marriages was some of them were conducted by proxy …

  3. “Do remember that next time someone decides to call Mohammed a paedophile. It’s legal to insult the memory of the Prophet, to insult your religious beliefs, even to insult you. “

    Try it. See how far you get. It’ll simply be deemed ‘behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace’ and you’ll be arrested.

    FFS, even mentioning the name of a political party can be twisted into ‘racial harassment’.

  4. Tim,

    Another one which might raise eyebrows is the claim he was raised directly into Heaven. Gibbon places him dying on a rug.

  5. FFS, even mentioning the name of a political party can be twisted into ‘racial harassment’.

    If you yell it at a person from a group who that party despises, as part of a campaign of harassment against them, then yes. If you don’t do that, then you’re safe.

  6. Personally I think we should go down the Al Capone route. What is particularly insulting to most people is the amount of benefit he claims from the people he insults. I am sure the proverbial fine tooth comb could be brought to bear on his finances……

  7. Martin:

    “Gibbon places him dying on a rug.”

    Perhaps Gibbon was misquoted there, by a witness who was hard of hearing.
    “Lying like a rug ” would make more sense, and explain a hell of a lot.

  8. What the public find so outrageous is the double standard in the way this law is so selectively applied.

    It’s a stupid law anyway, and ripe for exploitation by people with a vested interest in stretching the remit of ill-defined terms. Only threatening speech, and incitement to break the law, should be actionable. None of us has any right to be protected against insults.

    If they want to preserve the dignity of public and private ceremonies, then they could set up some legal mechanism for restricting behaviour within specific zones, at specific times, through the granting of a magistrates order. That would suffice to cover solemn occasions where decorum is required.

  9. Remittance Man

    The Paedo Mo thing wouldn’t matter if Muslims stopped regarding Muhammad as al-insan al-kamil (“the person who has reached perfection”). Ayatollah Khomeini lowered the age at which a man can have sex with a girl to nine specifically because of Muhammad’s precedent.

  10. Or, the other thing that you could have been charged with, behaviour likely to cause a breach of the peace, is about you acting as such a tosspot that someone was likely to beat you up.

    The problem with this is, let’s say I decided to stand outside a mosque and burn a few copies of the Mohammed cartoons. Fair enough to do that right? Just expressing my view. But that would be much more likely to get me beaten up…

  11. Or burn a copy of the Koran for that matter. Wasn’t there something in the news about that not so long ago?

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