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Three years in prison for Germans who criticise the EU.

I saw this on Breitbart & the Express websites, and dismissed it as hyperbole, but it looks like the President of Germany wants to imprison German citizens who disparage the EU or damage its flag.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier has presented a petition to the State Chamber stating that it is necessary to provide the law enforcement agencies with the means "to take firm and effective action against those whose aim is to disparage the fundamental values of the European Union". These include attacks "on the reputation or the symbols of the European Union". Specifically, anyone who "removes, destroys, or obscures" a publicly displayed EU flag is punished with imprisonment of up to three years or a fine.

Seems a bizarre and oppressive move, and an attack on fundamental rights of free speech.

Anyone in Germany know if it's likely to become law?

The original article in German is here, the Google translated version below.



Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier hoisted the blue European flag with the twelve stars in front of the Bellevue Palace just before the European elections in May. It is now the symbol of the EU - and it should now be better protected against slurs in Germany. Anyone who publicly destroys the flag, for example burns, may soon face a prison sentence.

The Federal Council is to advise on this information from our editorial staff at the end of next week. A petition to the State Chamber states that it is necessary to provide the law enforcement agencies with means "to take firm and effective action against those whose aim is to disparage the fundamental values of the European Union". These included attacks "on the reputation of the symbols of the European Union". Specifically, the one who "removes, destroys, destroys, destroys, destroys, or obscures" a publicly displayed EU flag is punished with imprisonment of up to three years or a fine. The punishment of the anthem of the EU should also be punished. Leading in the tightening of penalties is the Free State of Saxony.

So far, it is the case in Germany that only the symbols of foreign states such as flags and national emblems are criminally protected against destruction. The flag of the EU falls according to the application is not included. That should change. The new provision does not affect "the right to objective or legitimate criticism". But it is "a commandment of self-esteem" that the Federal Republic as a founding member of the EU "protects against malicious contempt."
 
If you're getting all snowflakey about this, don't (for goodness sake) Google Flag Desecration as you might find many (very many) countries have penalties for doing nasty things to their flag.
That one bloke in Germany has said it should apply to the EU flag as well just goes to show you have rather too much time on your hands.
 
If you're getting all snowflakey about this, don't (for goodness sake) Google Flag Desecration as you might find many (very many) countries have penalties for doing nasty things to their flag.
That one bloke in Germany has said it should apply to the EU flag as well just goes to show you have rather too much time on your hands.

He's not 'one bloke' though, he's the president of Germany, and as such I suspect his view carries some weight. Point taken about flag desecration though, but I was more concerned that he wants to criminalise criticism of the EU.
 
If you're getting all snowflakey about this, don't (for goodness sake) Google Flag Desecration as you might find many (very many) countries have penalties for doing nasty things to their flag.
.

I did google it, some countries do get upset over the desecration of their flag, I cant see anything about the desecration of a flag belonging to a shitty political union though.
 
He's not 'one bloke' though, he's the president of Germany, and as such I suspect his view carries some weight. Point taken about flag desecration though, but I was more concerned that he wants to criminalise criticism of the EU.
I hope he doesn't visit Arrse or we will all be doomed ...
 

TamH70

MIA
The proof of the pudding will be in whether arrests are made and whether maximum (or indeed, any,) sentences are passed.
I can’t remember if ever anyone’s been penalised for burning a Union Flag and our flag is a proper one, with a history behind it.
The Germans are going to look like a thin-skinned bunch of twonks if they start chucking people in prison for burning their Brussels overlords’ made-up corporate logo. The number of stars don’t even signify anything, and nor do the colours. In fact there’s no point in burning it, because it’s pointless and meaningless.
It’s a truly shit flag.

Edited to correct my mistaken assumption that it was the EU being a thin-skinned bunch of twats when it was actually a German.
 
Last edited:

Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
but I was more concerned that he wants to criminalise criticism of the EU.

Both articles you provided (Bretbart and the Express: covering the full gamut of political opinion from A to A and a bit) state 'the right to objective or legitimate criticism' is not covered.

Are you not so good at the old reading?
 

Sixty

ADC
Moderator
Book Reviewer
The EU’s going to look like a thin-skinned collective of twonks if they start chucking people in prison for burning their made-up corporate logo.

The Landstag of Saxony. Not the EU.
 

skid2

LE
Book Reviewer
I saw this on Breitbart & the Express websites, and dismissed it as hyperbole, but it looks like the President of Germany wants to imprison German citizens who disparage the EU or damage its flag.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier has presented a petition to the State Chamber stating that it is necessary to provide the law enforcement agencies with the means "to take firm and effective action against those whose aim is to disparage the fundamental values of the European Union". These include attacks "on the reputation or the symbols of the European Union". Specifically, anyone who "removes, destroys, or obscures" a publicly displayed EU flag is punished with imprisonment of up to three years or a fine.

Seems a bizarre and oppressive move, and an attack on fundamental rights of free speech.

Anyone in Germany know if it's likely to become law?

The original article in German is here, the Google translated version below.



Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier hoisted the blue European flag with the twelve stars in front of the Bellevue Palace just before the European elections in May. It is now the symbol of the EU - and it should now be better protected against slurs in Germany. Anyone who publicly destroys the flag, for example burns, may soon face a prison sentence.

The Federal Council is to advise on this information from our editorial staff at the end of next week. A petition to the State Chamber states that it is necessary to provide the law enforcement agencies with means "to take firm and effective action against those whose aim is to disparage the fundamental values of the European Union". These included attacks "on the reputation of the symbols of the European Union". Specifically, the one who "removes, destroys, destroys, destroys, destroys, or obscures" a publicly displayed EU flag is punished with imprisonment of up to three years or a fine. The punishment of the anthem of the EU should also be punished. Leading in the tightening of penalties is the Free State of Saxony.

So far, it is the case in Germany that only the symbols of foreign states such as flags and national emblems are criminally protected against destruction. The flag of the EU falls according to the application is not included. That should change. The new provision does not affect "the right to objective or legitimate criticism". But it is "a commandment of self-esteem" that the Federal Republic as a founding member of the EU "protects against malicious contempt."


Have a look around for all the nutcases who attempt to burn the Euro flag. They usually give a big speech then fail miserably as European H&S ensure that the Eu flag material is non flammable.

It’s pitiful.
 
Hasn't something like this happened in the Reich sorry, the Fatherland sorry, Germany before?

Like sacking German citizens and evicting those who had the temerity to criticize Mutti's new guests from sandy parts?.

It'll be off to the shiny new concentration camps er re-education centres soon for critics of Mutti and her party.
 
Both articles you provided (Bretbart and the Express: covering the full gamut of political opinion from A to A and a bit) state 'the right to objective or legitimate criticism' is not covered.

Are you not so good at the old reading?
Does that not strike you as rather illiberal? As soon as you criminalise criticism of an institution you spike public debate. Allowing 'objective or legitimate' criticism immediately sets a bar of 'can we justify this as objective or legitimate?' So in practice it just becomes safer not to criticise rather than risk the editor getting his collar felt.

Given we are leaving would you feel comfortable with a law introduced here that criminalises praise of the EU, but makes exceptions for 'objective or legitimate praise'?
 
I would not be surprised to find he's promoting a proposed EU Law

Germany - criticising/mocking politicians inc foreign is illegal see
German comedian vs Erdogan

German comedian loses case against Merkel over Erdogan poem

iirc similarly illegal in France & Holland

This would be EU Illegal

There was a young fellow from Ankara
Who was a terrific wankerer
Till he sowed his wild oats
With the help of a goat
But he didn’t even stop to thankera.

EU already moving to ban funding and voting rights of anti-EU MEPs, Gov'ts they don't like eg Hungary etc

EUSSR is increasingly appropriate.
 
And if someone in the UK falls foul of this rather Teutonic legislation - "to take firm and effective action against those whose aim is to disparage the fundamental values of the European Union" - can they expect a European arrest warrant and be then deported to The Fatherland for suitable punishment?
 

endure

GCM
It's a pity there's not an eternity in jail for loons who post deranged right wing bollocks.
 

rampant

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
It's a pity there's not an eternity in jail for loons who post deranged right wing bollocks.

There'd only be about 8 of us left if that happened
 

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