comments

LIVE COMMENT FEED

Displaying 25 comments. Reload the page to see more.

Angelique
No I do not
To: The Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Justice & Correctional Services

For attention: Mr Vhonani Ramaano Committee Secretary

I refer to the invitation for comments on the Prevention and Combating of Hate Crimes and Hate Speech Bill [B9 – 2018] (“the Bill”) published in the Government Gazette No. 41543 of 29 March 2018 and opened for comment on 26 November 2018, and make the following submissions in relation to clauses 1 and 4 (i.e. the proposed criminalisation of “hate speech”) thereof:

I wish to state my objection to the wide definition of “harm” in clause 1, and the creation of the crime of “hate speech”, in clause 4 of the Bill – particularly in light of existing laws that already prohibit “hate speech”.

As a person whose fundamental human right to religious freedom is protected by our Constitution, I am concerned that the Bill violates our constitutional rights as religious persons to express our religious beliefs without fear of punishment or persecution. Increasingly, around the world but also in South Africa, Scriptures (particularly on contentious issues concerning life, sexual orientation, gender, etc) are regarded as “politically incorrect” or “offensive”, allegedly causing emotional and/or psychological harm.

In similar vein, I am concerned that the creation of the crime of “hate speech” for saying something / distributing something which could be construed as “harmful”, will have certain unintended consequences, e.g. the criminalisation of good / well-meaning people who will be prosecuted for saying what they sincerely believe (according to the Scriptures) and sent to jail.

In the circumstances, and as there are already sufficient existing laws dealing with “hate speech”, I recommend that the sections relating to “hate speech” be deleted from the Bill altogether. Alternatively, I recommend that “hate speech” be defined exactly as it is defined in section 16(2) of the Constitution - nothing more, nothing less - to ensure that all our rights are protected, and South Africa does not become a State that censors religious belief and expression.

I trust that my submission will receive your attention and consideration. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Yours sincerely,

ANGELIQUE KALAM
Mike
No I do not
South Africa already has an adequate arsenal of laws designed to combat hate crimes and hate speech. The problem is that it is not being applied properly. White racists are being given ridiculously heavy sentences for minor offences, while black racists are simply allowed to spew their vile filth with no action being taken against them at all.
It is time to jack up the National Prosecuting Authority and ensure that it takes action against the EFF and other repeat offenders.
Ushka
Not fully
This is a fine razor edge. I support the right to freedom of expression, freedom of the press, the right to access to justice, and the right to just administrative action. I do not support racist propaganda and hate speech that incites division and violence amongst SA citizens. I strongly condemn the EFF's pre-meditated ongoing hate policy. I am outraged at the double standards of our captured judiciary. A compelling point in question: Kessie Nair was arrested in Sept for the K-word and is still in prison without bail, (pending mental assessment in April 2019), while Malema's favourite K-word is KILL, (targeting a minority ethnic race) with impunity. Which is more dangerous? The K-word or killing? No rocket science required. Even a child knows the answer.
Patricia
Yes I do
Because this just causes more harm.
Lionel
Yes I do
The amount of Hate Speech, Racism, homophobia prevalent in our society must be quelled if SA stands a chance of retaining any semblance of a democracy.
Gabrielle
No I do not
I support freedom of speech, if any speech is restricted, it takes power from the citizens and puts it into the hands of the state.
Hendrik
Yes I do
I have been paying the whole life span of Etoll and 80% of the popilation are nt paying their Etoll fees....I feel that it is unfair to the motorist that is contrebiuting their payments and the majority gets away
Estelle
Yes I do
we need to get rid of this in SA especially targeting the whites by the EFF. No place for this kind of behaviour anymore in SA
Michelle
No I do not
Given previous cases, it appears to be skewed. The whole system is biased against whites. There is no clear definition so you could take anyone to court simply because you are mildly offended. So no, right now I support free speech over hate speech. Government will not get it right
Cheryl
No I do not

Love and hate are opposites of the same coin. Every action has a reaction and it is dependent on the situation one finds themselves in. It is impossible to legislate a person's feelings and emotions. Bi-polar is a perfect example of a psychological problem that could be misinterpreted as being hateful!!
Vernon
Yes I do
We need to respect each other. Without respect there is no relationship. No relationship no common goal, no future for our country. The criminals will have freedom to create chaos as currently the situation with ANC and Malema.

Kagiso
Yes I do
I am saying this with a lot of respect and conviction that we cannot allow hate speech to continue unpunished because honestly speaking South Africa can be the best country without such people. We will also create a better future for our children to leave and share in harmony and peace
Henk
Yes I do
It is time for peace and progress in this country.
Steve
Yes I do
Hate speech has no place in our society. it must be punished.
Kirsten
Not fully
In a democracy, no topic should be off the table. Free speech is the cornerstone of any democracy, and 'free' means without retribution or consequence. It is insane that people can go to jail for name calling, but violent offenders get off. Moreover, it seems that these 'law's are applied differently to different races. Stop this insanity.
Pam
Yes I do
We need to see that we are each one of us a "cell" of humanity.... what we do to others we are doing to ourselves - we cannot live together if we do not respect each other and behave in respectful ways. At present we - South Africans - are behaving like an autoimmune disease does.... cells within the same body attacking each other until the body dies.....We will destroy our entire body/country is we continue with this!!!
Michael
No I do not
Who gets to define what is "hate"? If an opinion is given that is factually true, but steps on someone else's toes and they decide to take offence, does that mean that what the original person said is hateful? No! It might have been said in love.
Jacquiline
No I do not
Freedom of speech allows everyone to have their say. I prefer this than be told what can and cannot be said.
Alexander
Yes I do
The hate speech combating should be colour blind. No ethnic group may get special treatment over any other.
It sickens me to see how a lot of hate speech is done openly with no consequences.
Arthur
No I do not
Current legislation and the application thereof is mainly aimed at white people, very few black people are prosecuted for their own blatant hate speech. I do not trust a law that is aimed at the easiest target.
Salome
No I do not

You cannot legislate common decency, it is a matter of parental training and inculcated into us as infants at home and later in school. Existing laws of assault are adequate for prosecution and the idiotic war
Lee
No I do not
Free speech for all not for a selected few.
Donald
No I do not
You cannot legislate common decency, it is a matter of parental training and inculcated into us as infants at home and later in school. Existing laws of assault are adequate for prosecution and the idiotic war on words and the use of them must be stopped it infringes on freedom of speech and is Draconian. I have yet to meet a normal person injured by a word. The ridiculous over sensitivities of certain classes of people collectively to certain specific words, is tantamount to an admission of guilt, a matter of if the cap fits wear it. Those that cannot accommodate meaningless and inappropriate words and verbal abuse cannot take comfort from legislation anyway. This is just frivilous bullshit.
Tebogo
No I do not
Cleary this bill will affect the right to freedom of speech, it is my view that one can never truly stop people from having their own opinion about issues that affect them. In so doing that will take away their right to public and political participation. Since SA is a democratic elected government it goes without saying that it's citizens must be able to comment, criticize and form opinions about the issues that affect them. By regulating the right to freedom of speech will mean that our country has an authoritative government whose decisions cannot be challenged, criticized and commented thereon. Limiting the right to freedom of speech constitutes an undemocratic government and can lead to an oppressive , dedactorship kind of a government.
Wesley
No I do not
Because it is disgusting that a person could be locked up over sound waves exiting their mouth when they're obviously angry or distressed (thus not thinking clearly). They are JUST WORDS, people.

The bill is also blatantly racist towards the white minority in South Africa, as only they can be able to be found guilty of any wrongdoing.