Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Harriet Harman ignores the US constitution

There is, in the US, a rather unpleasant website called Punternet. It effectively is a website for consumers of prostitutes to rate their experiences. It is legal in the US, indeed it is constitutionally protected free speech. The speech may be highly offensive to many, but that is not a ground to prohibit it, it is, after all, just a series of opinions about consensual experiences between adults. For many it is no doubt a bit of prurient reading, for some it may be useful. It rates prostitutes in the UK . Again, this is protected by the First Amendment. Nobody has to go there, and no crime is committed to produce the website.

However, these are boundaries that enemies of free speech don't respect. They believe free speech which offends should be banned. So what is the result?

According to The Times, Harriet Harman, the Equalities Minister (an Orwellian role if ever there was one) thinks the Governor of California should ignore the US Constitution, and ban the website, because it offends her for encouraging the "commodification of women". Whether it does or does not is besides the point.

Sorry Harriet, just because the UK doesn’t enjoy protection of civil liberties by Constitution, and just because you have a petty fascist attitude to that which “offends you”, doesn’t mean you can extend your bullying ways to the USA.

Harriet has been criticised by Carrie Mitchell, of the English Collective of Prostitutes, who said "Once again instead of prioritising dealing with rape and other violence, Harman is prioritising censorship and repression”. So not even those who represent prostitutes believe in this supposed attempt to protect them, they'd rather the Police better dealt with real crime.

Nobody has a right to not be offended, for it were true, then I’d ban Harman and most of the utterings of this contemptible government for offending me and millions of Britons every day. This latest extension of the authoritarian "do as we say for your own good" nanny state shows further how vile the British Labour Party is, wanting other countries to break their own Constitutions to extend the nanny state into their jurisdiction, because of the limits of their own authoritarian reach.

Oh and well done Harriet, you’ve made Punternet’s day by undoubtedly increasing the hit rate from the UK by a significant factor. Today it is ranked 1053rd in the UK (according to Alexa), with 36576 hits yesterday. Let’s see how it is in the next two days….

1 comment:

Peter said...

I may be completely wrong, but I didn't see anywhere in the article where she said she had been offended.