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Sweden's Totalitarian Face
On April 4 2014, in Malmö District Court in Sweden, the provocative artist Dan Park was sentenced to three months in jail for hate speech ("hets mot folkgrupp") for his works of art. The prosecutor even wanted the artist examined for mental illness, similar to the way Communist dictatorships have treated dissidents. The court did not support this suggestion, however. Park and his defense lawyer have indicated that they will appeal the verdict.
Ingrid Carlqvist, the editor of the newspaper Dispatch International, commented that the verdict essentially amounts to a ban on satire in Sweden, at least if the satire involves ideologically protected immigrant groups.
At the same time, and with a heavy heart, Carlqvist announced her own decision to leave her native Sweden. The repressive and totalitarian atmosphere in the country has simply become intolerable, especially if you happen to be a critic of Islamization, Multiculturalism or mass immigration. You then run a real risk of physical attacks. The level of political violence as well as street crime is only rivaled by the level of ideological censorship and repression. In combination, this has created a society plagued by levels of tension that are growing increasingly dangerous.
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