A New Zealand man has been sentenced to 21 months in prison for sharing the livestream of the Christchurch massacre in a private chat of 30 people.
I’m not here to support this man whatsoever. From what I can see, he’s scum. My only intention here is to defend free speech – even when I don’t like it.
Yesterday, Philip Arps pleaded guilty to two counts of distributing the livestream video of the Christchurch massacre.
Judge Stephen O’Driscoll said that when questioned about the video, Arps had described it as “awesome” and had shown no empathy toward the victims.
Which is disgusting, but hardly a crime?
Justice O’Driscoll said the 44-year-old had strong and unrepentant views about the Muslim community and had, in effect, committed a “hate crime”.
Yep. The judge said Philip Arps had “glorified” the killings which in effect is a hate crime.
Under legislation aimed at preventing the distribution of “objectionable material”, Arps faced up to 14 years imprisonment on each count.
The 44-year-old is one of several people facing charges over sharing the video.
We don’t know who the others are and if they’re proud Nazi scumbags like Arps, but that’s beside the point.
The verdict leaves me with two questions and no good answers.
Was he found guilty:
1. For the mere fact that he shared “objectionable material”, as stated in the legislation?
Or 2. Because he was sympathetic to the killer’s abhorrent views?
If it’s just for sharing the video, that sets a dangerous precedent: From now on if the government doesn’t like something you share online, even if it’s not your content – they can jail you.
Also, who gets to decide what constitutes “objectionable material”? Do all violent attacks fall under that category? Where does that leave anyone who shares 9/11 footage, for example?
But if it’s the fact that he’s sympathetic to the killer, why has no one ever been charged for sharing the 9/11 footage before. I’ve seen thousands of posts where Muslims have shared and celebrated that attack, no one has ever been charged, let alone jailed.
Can it be they’re picking and choosing where to apply this ridiculous law? Brown people against white people is okay, but white people must always be taught a lesson.
I think they call it “white privilege”.
To be clear, I believe the idea of jailing anyone for sharing content is NOT okay. I ‘m a free speech absolutist. We must only draw the line at incitement to violence.
This idiot didn’t incite any violence. He just hurt peoples feelings.
He’s in jail for sharing someone else’s video and making vile comments with it.
That is very scary.