All in the name of human rights
Sometimes reading the so called Counter-jihad blogs you get the impression that the Western elites are appeasing Islam because they are afraid of Islamic terror and death threats. That may be true but it is hardly the full story.
Human Rights Union fighting against discrimination
Finnish Human Rights advocacy organization Ihmisoikeusliitto (Human Rights Union) was founded in 1979 to continue the work of communist front group Union of human rights and civic freedoms. Lately the Human Rights Union has become famous for its demands to fund non-medical circumcisions from the public purse. Despite the far-left backround of the organization their goals are not too much different from the ones of more established human rights groups like Amnesty International.
In their recent statement concerning the National Human Rights Action Program the HRU and their chairman Kristiina Kouros introduced measures that would help immigrants settle into Finland. Like most organizations in the left the HRU is primarily concerned about equality:
“To achive equality it is not enough to prohibit discrimination. In addition to authorities the educational institutions as well as employers should be mandated to create an equality plan.”
This means that all public and private institutions should promote diversity and equal opportunity employment, which in practice means promoting minorities ahead of the majority population. The HRU also states that promoting equality can be promoted by public procurement contracts. Private enterprises would be mandated to comply with human rights requirements to be able to compete:
“In Finland it is possible to include standard statement about commitment to non-discrimination in the procurement contract. At worst, the consequence of non-compliance would be canceling the contract and barring the company from the future tendering of public procurement.”
So instead of generally unpopular legally mandated minority quotas, the HRU promotes hidden measures to force private enterprises to toe the government enforced diversity.
Soft on FGM and honor violence
Like other human rights advocacy groups the HRU is remarkably soft on gross human rights violations like female genital mutilation and honor violence that are widely practiced in the immigrant communities. the HRU demands the creation of new expert body specialized in “adverse traditions”:
“Based in the experience of the HRU there is a demand for consultation work and training among authorities. The state must guarantee permanent funding for the expert body and state-wide availability of consultation and training. The HRU thinks it is necessary to establish a permanent expert body specialized in adverse traditions as a part of the government or other expert organization.”
Instead of law enforcement measures, the HRU advocates another taxpayer funded organization consisting of human rights experts like Kristiina Kouros herself and not more resources to the police to combat crimes like FGM or honor violence.
The real enemy
The HRU and the likes of Kristiina Kouros would like to deal with problems caused by “adverse tradions” by sweeping them under the carpet. Public knowledge of the widespread honor violence and female genital mutilation in the immigrant communities could possibly increase racism and xenophobia in the indigenous population.
To avoid that the HRU promotes harsh measure against hate crimes. To the disappointment of human rights groups like the HRU the number of hate crimes has actually decreased according to the police statistics. This, however, does not prevent the HRU from exaggerating the number of hate crimes and claiming that most hate crimes remain hidden:
“Based on the study made by European Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) 57 per cent of Somalis living in Finland had not reported to the police the racist violence or harassment they had experienced during the last 12 months. According to 41 per cent of them the reason for this was the lack of trust to the police.”
While part of the hate crimes certainly remain hidden, the 15 per cent decrease in reported hate crimes cannot be explained away with that. The FRA study was made in 2008 and the police figures are from 2010.
The HRUalso advocates more strict line towards hate speech than the authorities do. The HRU had this to say about freedom of speech:
“Freedom of speech guaranted by human rights treaties and constitution include duties and responsibilities. Freedom of speech does not justify violating the rights of others. Lately, this part has been forgotten in the public discussion about freedom of speech and its restrictions.”
The HRU would also make punishable publishing opinions that the author does not subsricbe:
“The chapter 11 and paragraph 10 of the penal code about incitement against ethnic group must be reviewed. It seems that the application of the paragraph relies heavily on the requirement of intent, even though the paragraph and its preconditions do not require it. If necessary, the possibility to sentence based on negligence should be included in the penal code.”
The intent itself is hard enough to establish and it is also impossible to determine if the text or statement “insults a group” more if it was expressed with or without intent. The HRU goes even further by wanting to convict “freedom of speech criminals” for negligent incitement, even though the publisher of the statement does not subscribe to the “inciting” opinion.
Breivik and Halla-aho yet again
The kind of restrictions to the freedom of speech promoted by the HRU would not be possible without Norwegian terrorist Anders Breivik and the climate of censorship that was promoted by the political and intellectual left in the aftermath of the Utöya murders.
Journalist writing for Swedish-language daily Hufvudstadsbladet, Marianne Lydén recently published a book in which she tries to explain why The Finns party achieved a landslide victory in the 2011 Finnish parliamentary election. Lyden’s book is fairly mediocre analysis performed by a mediocre journalist intended for a small Finnish-Swedish audience.
Reading an excerpt from Lyden’s book reveals that it contains the same smears, plain lies, half-truths and selective quotations that were published by the likes of Jussi Jalonen and Toby Archer a few days after the Utöya massacre.
The fact that Breivik did not praise Halla-aho but copy-pasted dozens of articles written by Norwegian blogger Fjordman to his manifesto does not matter. The fact that Breivik was recently diagnosed as schizophrenic matters even less.
Lyden’s book received attention from high places when Finnish Foreign minister Erkki Tuomioja reviewed her book at Mtv3 website:
“Lyden provides an excellent analysis about Halla-aho’s writings and opinions and his connections as the writer of Gates of Vienna blog to hardcore European racists like the Utöya mass murderer Breivik.”
Lying has never been a vice among left-wing politicians as long as the lies advance the cause. Tuomioja likes Lydén’s book but also finds some shortcomings:
“What is missing from Lydén’s otherwise excellent book is the analysis of immigration and the integration of immigrants and any attempt to understand or explain the issues that feed “immigration criticism” and its use by political soldiers of fortune.”
In fact, I would agree with Tuomioja in the second part of the above paragraph if I did not suspect that Tuomioja probably does not understand the issues “feeding the immigration criticism” any more than Marianne Lydén. Those issues have more to do with Finnish government policy than anything that was written in Gates of Vienna blog or my blog for that matter.