UK To Ban “Preachers Of Hate”

Those Brits are full of good ideas! The United Kingdom’s Home Office today announced that “hate preachers” could be banned from entering their land.

Foreign-born “preachers of hate” and other violent extremists will have to prove they have publicly renounced their views or be refused entry to Britain under tough new rules unveiled today.

The measures, set out in a written ministerial statement by Jacqui Smith, the home secretary, will make it easier to exclude those who want to come to the UK to stir up religious or racial hatred.

Obviously “hate” can include homophobia, so Andy over at UK Gay News did a little digging and found that anti-gay preachers, like Fred Phelps, also face British banishment.

Writes Andy:

Those who advocate hatred towards gay men and women WILL face the possibility of being barred from entry into the UK – and would have to prove that they have “renounced their previous extremist views or actions the burden of proof is on them to demonstrate that this is so and that this has been publicly communicated” before removal from the “banned list”.

The Home Office also told me that they are expecting many names to be added to the banned list which currently stands at 230 people most of whom are on the list for security reasons. But 79 are there for “unacceptable behavior” … Fred Phelps is thought to already be one of the 79.

Now, if only we Yanks would follow suit!

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  • REBELComx

    Now if only they (and we) could band domestic ones…

  • Matt

    LOL I fucking love the shot of underappreciated UK superhero Union Jack.

  • psy

    Censoring them only gives them more support. The best response to hate speech is more speech.

  • retrofit71

    Who decide’s what is hateful and what is not? Seems like a scary idea, as much as Fred Phelps and Elizabeth Hasselback are douchbags, free speech is one of the things that makes America great.

  • Jaroslaw

    PSY – I have mixed feelings on this one – yeah, I don’t like the idea of censoring people either, but media deciders need to use some common sense too when they put stuff in front of the public. And if they do put people like Phelps, they need to put the other side and not be weak kneed in their counter questions….often they treat these disgusting snotwads with TOO much respect.

  • seitan-on-a-stick

    Poor ole Churchill-y can’t go back to Mummy in England! Does this include the entire Republican Party?

  • Matt

    I don’t like this. Who gets to decide what is hate speech? If a religious group gained power they could ban people who spoke ill of them. I guess you are banned from Britain Seitan-on-a-stick since you spew hate about anyone not as liberal as you.


    HAHA, I don’t have no “Mummy” in the UK but I would surely love to have a Daddy over there :-)

    As for more strict rules for hate preachers, it’s no secret that I’m a huge proponent of free speech but I do realize that things have gotten so bad in the UK for us that I won’t take issue with whatever they decide to address it there.
    Also if something good is to come from such drastic actions by the Brits is gonna be that they are going to have to ban all the imams thus reducing their Muslim population and the vast majority of Afro-Caribbean preachers coupled with a healthy those of African ones, thus targeting a huge component of an anti-Gay population that they have allowed to settle in their nation.

    So Cheers UK, it’s about time!

  • Darth Paul

    Stupid f&cking idea. The Brits can’t get enough of their nanny state.

    PSY and Retrofit71 are on the right track, except that I’ll retort that this is UK, not the US. They don’t have free anything there, much less speech.

  • Andy

    It has been long overdo for them to get those raging Muslim fundamentalist extremists under control over there. Especially the imams.

    They have given them such free reign and been so lax with them for so long though, I think it might be too little too late.

    I can understand respecting different cultures and not wanting to appear racist. But when your own freedom of speech and safety is threatened, you have trouble on your hands.

  • Jaroslaw

    Here’s another thought – free speech is great, but if someone gets hurt, the free speecher is supposed to be responsible for their words.

    In other words, “homosexuality is against my religion” is fine; “The Bible says queers are supposed to be stoned to death” is not.

  • Jaroslaw

    Here’s another thought – free speech is great, but if someone gets hurt, the free speecher is supposed to be responsible for their words.

    In other words, “homosexuality is against my religion” is fine; “The Bible says queers are supposed to be stoned to death” may not be.

  • Bill Perdue

    The hate speech laws in the UK, however limited, are still a big advance over the total lack of federal hate speech and hate crimes legislation in the US. We lack them because the Democrats ditched the Matthew Shepard hate crimes bill and they don’t want hate speech laws because then Obama would have to shut his mouth about “god’s in the mix.”

    Hate speech laws are as much needed in England as they are here. England has plenty of bigots, most of them Europeans who various despise and persecute ‘wogs’, muslims, GLBT folks, Africans, Asians and even other Europeans like the Irish. They have an openly bigoted state religion and many English parties like the Conservatives (Tories), the UKIP, the skinhead scum of the BNP and their cousins in the DUP in occupied Ireland harbor large numbers of bigots.

    And it affects Labour too, which has a homophobic and islamophobic attitude towards GLBT refugees from the islamist murderers in Iraq and Iran.

    I hope these provisions will be applied full force to bigoted scum like Beenie Man, Buju Banton, and Sizzla, representatives of the violent christian bigotry that claimed so many LGBT lives in Jamaica. Any decent government would ban them and sales of their ‘music’ and issue warrants for their arrest as co-conspirators every time one of us is murdered. Just as they should be applied with full force against the anti-GLBT, anti-black, anti-muslim Eurochrisits.

  • ousslander

    It’s ridiculous. I can’t take the name calling. boo f—ing hoo. actively calling for someone to be killed, should not be allowed. Unfortunately I doubt these rules will apply to everyone. It will be used to target christian churches and muslims will get a pass.

  • Steff

    Stupid f&cking idea. The Brits can’t get enough of their nanny state.

    We’ve got extremist preachers in mosques over here in the UK who are spewing out all sorts of shit, it is not a good situation.

    Nanny state? What’s the alternative? Let these people run rampant in our country, inciting violence and hatred?

  • Lessthan

    To answer your question, Steff, yes. Let them talk shit all they want. Their freedom is more important than how you or I feel. Now if they were to attack you, then consequences must be dealt out. The freedom of speech is an all or nothing proposition, for who gets to decide what is hateful and vile? Here in America, gays are STILL linked to child molestation every time a bible-thumper gets warmed up. There are still more of them than us. How quickly can they ban “immorality?”

  • John

    The Supreme Court of the United States would certainly disagree that free speech is “all or nothing.”

    Among the most obvious restrictions on speech approved by the high court are the prohibitions against active duty military engaging in public criticism of civilian leaders (including the President, Vice-President, Secretary of Defense, and Speaker of the House). If an army general went on CNN and called Nancy Pelosi a “bitch,” he or she could concievably go to jail. That’s why smart military officers generally don’t talk politics until after they’ve retired. A lot of people attribute it to cowardice. But they’re merely protecting themselves from prosecution.

  • psy

    “media deciders need to use some common sense too when they put stuff in front of the public”

    Absolutely, and that’s up for media deciders (and their audiences, which they rely on) to decide, not the government.

    I’ll leave you with this quote:

    The only way to make sure people you agree with can speak is to support the rights of people you don’t agree with.

    —Eleanor Holmes Norton

  • Steff


    Okay, but considering the words that these people are preaching are causing the younger generations in this country to go out and attack, stab and kill it still doesn’t seem right that we should just allow them access to the country for the sake of free speech.

    By all means these people can talk all they like about what they think of anyone or anything, but they don’t have to encourage violence.

    Admittedly, the British government is probably going to balls it up and go about it completely wrong, ie. Fred Phelps, if he is on the list, doesn’t incite violence, just a slight feeling of nausea.

  • Rob Haskell

    Enough state control. Enough PC industry.Free speech should prevail. Better to hear the anti-gay nonsense and refute it, ignorant point by ignorant point. And in turn we should be free, without the risk of criminal prosecution, to speak of real matters of anger in contemporary Britain – and which cannot be refuted: drug and gun crime initiated by jamaicans; somali so-called refugees, who are in fact ex-warlords, claiming multiple benefits for themselves and their huge families; fatherless afro-caribbean teenage males terrorising the streets with their knives; a police recruitment policy which bends over backwards to recruit effnik officers – who then bad-mouth the police force; the babel of central London schools with 23 “home languages”; the reintroduction of tuberculosis into the UK by third world immigrants; the vilification and firing last year of a bright(and very cute!)Manchester police officer for his honesty in saying “Racial profiling is just intelligent practical policing”. Let’s claim the freedom to speak the truth!

  • Bill Perdue

    Hate speech laws and regulations should be aimed specifically at bigots who use hate speech to endanger GLBT folks, women, trade unionists and people form Asian, Middle Eastern, Caribbean and African communities in England. Cult leaders of the christist and islamist cults should not be exempt form prosecution. If hate speech leads to hate crimes these bigots should be prosecuted as accessories and accomplices of the criminals who did the violence.

    These kinds of laws are too important to leave in the timid hands of protectors of the status quo, which is racism and homophobia. The police and the Crown Prosecution Service cannot be counted on to act boldly and competently in cases involving racists and homophobes.

    Fair enforcement requires the creation of an enforcement committee with powers to arrest, detain, and prosecute under the normal guidelines but composed solely of elected representatives of unions, minority communities and the GLBT communities. Membership in skinhead groups like the BNP and the DUP or persons who play a leading role in cults should be excluded.

    Freedom of speech is wasted on bigots, racists and other scum when it leads to hate crimes.

  • Lessthan

    @ Steff; As loud as I may shout, I can never hurt you with my voice. You could argue that I can spread vicious lies about you to damage your reputation, but in the end, the only people who would believe me would be people who didn’t know you. (Plus I’m a lousy liar.) It may incite someone to harm you. That is true, but I feel that the restriction is too much of a slippery slope. You said that you think that the lawmakers will mess the law up. I say that there will be a lot of underhanded measures taken to get not-so-nice things included in the law. It is an excuse to discriminate, no matter how pretty they dress it up.

    @ John, I am aware of the law that you are talking about, but it is a poor example. They are forbidden to malign higher ranks while in uniform. An officer can say whatever he wants while not in uniform, making it very clear that he is speaking as a private citizen. Of course, that may be the beginning of the end of his career, because officers depend on his superiors for promotion.
    A better example would be that it is illegal yell “Fire” in a crowded movie theater. That is something that will cause immediate harm to people. I think that that is where the line should be drawn at.

    Suppressing what other people have to say because you don’t like it is a step into fascism. You are not the master of other people. Your truth is not their truth. Imagine a wacky cult that tries, nicely, to convert you. They are convinced that they are speaking the truth. They are trying to save you from their hell. Do you need to tell them that they are wrong or can you counter their arguments with your own? Which is the better path? Does that change when they get nasty? Why?

  • Wepiffer Dougberry

    Being from the UK, I am actually extremely pleased about this. Free speach is VERY important in my list of morals that I live my life by, but I have had enough of people who preach hatred and call it “free speach”, such as Abu Hamza.

    I think it’s fair enough if people from the US don’t agree with what has been done over here in terms of banning these people from entry, but if you live here, and actually see people preaching hatred towards different religions/people of different nationalities, you’d think this is an excellent idea.

    Going into London and seeing it with your own eyes opens up your mind. I do like the way people are expressing their opinions, as long as they have an open mind and are willing to let others voice theirs.

  • Jaroslaw

    PSY – I didn’t say censor anyone. What I said when you quoted me about the “media deciders” – think about this:

    Everyday hundreds of stories pour into TV & print newsrooms and they DECIDE what they are going to put on. They DECIDE HOW to present it and they DECIDE how much time to give it. Despite people telling pollsters one thing and doing another OFTEN (but not always) do you really think the public wanted to hear about Monica & Bill’s BJ almost all day everyday for a year? What I’m driving at is the media can CREATE interest.

    Yet I almost never hear about anything really radical on the news – such as groups who fight for fairer taxation or tougher regulations on corporations….

    Still, my main point is the reporters do not ask the tough questions back – they tiptoe around things. I’ll give you a great example – a very popular minister gives rallies around the country saying some absolutely vile things. The newspaper says “allegedly”, “reportedly” etc. yet it is on tape and there are thousands of witnesses. I called and spoke to the reporter who wrote the story. I asked why all the kid gloves and dancing around instead of coming right out and quoting him. The reporter said because he has so many fervent followers and they would jam up our phone lines and emails.

    Conclusion: the news is not always fearless, objective or immune to the agenda of the parent company – and the list goes on and on.

    So whats wrong with me advocating a little more discretion in what is presented?

  • Mark

    Proposals on banning the public expression of one point of view or another are very short sighted. Let’s say that the door is opened and those you disagree with are silenced. What happens in 10 years when someone else bans the public expression of what your point of view? The freedom to air your opinion, regardless of how offensive it might be, is a fundamental right here in the US (recognized by the government–not granted by the government). Also, while I disagree with you, I’m going to stand up for your right to air the opinion that other’s opinions ought to be banned.

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