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Artist avoids jail for 'negro slave taunt'

TT/The Local/gm · 27 Jan 2012, 07:58

Published: 27 Jan 2012 07:58 GMT+01:00

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Park created and distributed posters with a picture of Jallow Momodou of the National Afro-Swedish Association (Afrosvenskarnas riksförbund) superimposed on the image of a naked man in chains.

"Our negro slave has run away," read the text on the posters.

The controversial artist singled out Momodou for having reported a "jungle party" thrown by the Halland Nation student group during which three people with blackened faces and ropes around their necks were led into the party by a "slave trader" and later sold.

Park's posters were distributed around Lund and also included Momodou's name and contact details.

Momodou claimed the posters were racist and offensive, while Park argued that the purpose of the posters was to highlight the issue of free speech.

"I want to make fun of the fact that people get upset about something like this," he told the Lund University's student newspaper, Lundagård, in April.

At the time of his arrest in October, Park told The Local that he thought the prosecutors were overreacting.

”Was I surprised to be charged? Yes and no. I think it is a waste of tax payers' money mainly. It wasn't a big deal. And no one should be able to tell me what kind of art I can create, ” he said.

”We all have different tastes and people often get upset, but that is what art is about - creating reaction."

However, the court ruled that Parks must have been aware of the fact that, in the context of the "slave auction" controversy, his posters singled out Momodou as a "runaway negro slave" and gave the impression that Halland Nation head Elinor Lavesson was the person who posted the flyers.

As a result, the court reasoned, Park must have realized that the posters would result in both Momodou and Lavesson being disparaged by others, making Parks guilty of defamation.

Story continues below…

In convicting Parks of racial agitation, the court found that the artist's freedom of expression claims didn't hold up as the posters were needlessly insulting and an attack on the rights of dark skinned people.

In delivering the guilty verdict, the court handed Parks a suspended sentence, fined him 6,000 kronor ($890) and ordered him to pay 10,000 kronor in damages to both Lavesson and Momodou.

TT/The Local/gm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

11:47 January 27, 2012 by Kareen
I think the verdict wasnt fair enough! In the name of freedom of expression, this heartless artist is trying to glorify evil! Yes, we all believe in fundermental freedoms but what are freedoms if you are using such art that depicts lack of freedom for the victims of slavery?? Sometimes the Swedish justice system is not just at all. He should have been handed a heavier sentence. In this century to have people like him reasoning that shows how lack of inteligent information is to some of the so called "free Swedes" They are all ignorant about the world!
13:48 January 27, 2012 by abaeterno
The guy is an idioit. Using shock tactics to get attention is pathetic.

I think he should be sent to work in a mineral mine in an african country for a year or two and see how he feels about people making art (and thus money) from his misery.
15:29 January 27, 2012 by Roy E
It must be a very slow news day to trot this tired nonsense out again. .
15:58 January 27, 2012 by Global Macro
Kareen, no, you do not believe in "fundamental freedoms." You believe in fundamental freedoms so long as the exercise of those freedoms does not result in anyone else feeling "disparaged" or "insulted" or "offended." Although some other readers may believe that this was simply a "slow news day," it is not. The government is now empowered to convict you of a crime and fine or imprison you if anyone is "disparaged," "insulted" or "offended" by your words. Freedom of speech and expression is probably the most fundamental right and the most essential to a free country. It has been profoundly curtailed in Sweden.
16:51 January 27, 2012 by jostein
It is a good laugh to see how "liberals" are not very liberal at all when put to the test :D Rather, "liberals" represent a set of opinions and are neither liberal nor tolerant of people that go outside these values. Global Macro said it best.
17:39 January 27, 2012 by Roy E
@Global Macro

I believe we're on the same page. The 'tired nonsense' I'm referring to is the notion that people have a right to 'not be offended' when taking offense is entirely a personal decision. It's absurd.

I do not beleive for a nanosecond that the Local posted this story because they champion freedom of speech and wanted to call attention to that cause.
17:53 January 27, 2012 by jimmyjames
Every single day of my life I see things on T.V. that I find personally offensive, I read things in so-called newspapers that are morally repugnant to me, and people say and do things that insult me.........but no governmental organization gives a "hoot".

As a Caucasion person of Western European origin I resent the implication that my tribe is solely responsible for ALL the racial injustices that ever occured. My tribe was attacked and enslaved by the Roman Empire I do not hear endless lamenting about that fact. Blacks in African nations have perpetrated a 1,000 times more enslavement, more genocide, and more injustice in the past 100 years than Caucasion peoples have in 500 years.

As a European Caucasion I do not owe Sub-Saharan Africans, Jews, or anyone any special apologies or consideration. Do the Mongolians feel ashamed for Genghas Khan, do the English still want apologies and special treatment from Nordic peoples because of centuries of Viking raids, ect.,ect.

Stop this Political Correct-extreme Liberal nonsense.
23:26 January 27, 2012 by Global Macro
jimmyjames, I had forgotten about that. I am Celtic too. My people were enslaved by the Romans. And let me tell you, I am pissed off about it.
00:22 January 28, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
I'm not comparing tragedies here - not comparing the Holocaust with the Slave Trade or the massacres by Pol Pot - or Rwanda...each is unique in its own way.

If you too listened to Kofi Annan's speech at the Roaul Wallenberg Square this evening, you would have the unmistakable feeling that the human value he was talking about is not represented by Dan Park's racist caricature - or that Sweden's hero Roaul Wallenberg would condone that kind of racism either.

It's a tragedy that some people, utterly lacking in what's called empathy go out of their way to mess around with other peoples feelings - or with ideals that other people cherish as sacred.

There was nothing abstract about Dan Park's "art" His cartoon was personalised - that was another human being with name and face and slave chain imposed round his neck. That was an innocent, living soul that he was making such a gross caricature of to his own delight and for no reason other than that Mr. Momodou Jallow had objected - in the same manner that all the sympathy to victims of the trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and their descendants in the African Diaspora West, in Africa-America and the Caribbean and Brazil, Venezuela, Peru, Panama , the UK - and here in Sweden object to in the clearest, strongest, most uncompromising terms.

That was a rather mild sentence. One hundred lashes on the bare bottom would have taught him a lesson not to take other people's pain or integrity so lightly.

And if he still had not learned the lesson, he should repeat the same folly, do one of Rev. Jesse Jackson or Louis Farrakhan, Malcolm X, Muhammad Ali or Paul Robeson , Bob Marley or Al Sharpton and post it all over town in Mississippi or Alabama and then go around town grinning as one completely satisfied and at ease with himself and wait to see what happens. He would probably never recognise danger until danger had overtaken him , and then it would be too late to repent or say " I'm sorry"
01:25 January 28, 2012 by nar klockan klamtar
Slavery is so often spoken of in the past tense. African and Arab slavers are enslaving vunerable African tribes at this very minute, and not a single white man is involved. I wonder why we don't hear about that very often???
04:23 January 28, 2012 by Gamla Hälsingebock
Throughout history there have been more white slaves than black The Greek, Roman civilizations were built on slavery. Dublin, Ireland was one of the biggest slave trading centers in Europe, run by Vikings. The name of the Slavish (slav) people was based on the word slave.

Slavery was legal in parts of Europe until the 1580's.

White people sold white people to each other for centuries.

What was a serf, esne in the middle ages in Europe, if not a slave?

During WWII most of Europe was enslaved by Nazism.

Russian and German army prisoners went into slavery and never came home

Now a question...what about black people that sold there "own" into slavery and practiced it?

Black people have owned slaves as did American Indians.

What's wrong here is, it's only whites are the bad guys.

Everybody has/had slavery in their history...for crying out loud it was LEGAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And on a lighter note...a few years ago there was an "art" exhibit (statue) in NYC depicting Jesus smeared with excrement...nothing happened to the artist!

So it is a good thing to show a crucified white man smeared with dung...right?
05:24 January 28, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
You heard Sengbeh Pieh shout FREE in Spielberg's "Amistad" ?

William Hague The UK's Minister of Foreign Affairs wrote a book , "William Wilberforce: The Life of the Great Anti-Slave Trade Campaigner."

You should read it.

You want to start a moral discussion about slavery in black and white and want some people to go all the way back to Egypt?

The instruction is, " Do not go back that way again" ( Deuteronomy 17:16)

Or you want to make fun of the enslavement of Africans in the Americas - or in Sweden?

It's possible that the Lund students out to have some harmless good fun thought that it would be a good idea if they had black slaves and that's why they didn't impersonate white slaves. It was funnier for them looking whitish like Mr. Charlie and to be dragging their black slaves around on stage, in their little private minstrel show, eh? My beef is less with the Lund students....

Dan Park probably still thinks that he is well within his rights, but I can assure him that if he tried the same kind of thing in Kingston, or took a walk down to Trench town to exhibit or paste his works, he wouldn't last very long and after Black Man had shown him some street Justice in Jamaica perhaps even Jesus would not like to resurrect or bring him back home as he is reported to have done for Lazarus.....

Listen : "More than anything else "Margaret Garner" is an opera that reminds us that we all belong to the same human family and it demonstrates what can happen when we forget this fundamental truth...." :


05:51 January 28, 2012 by Global Macro
Hamelberg, in your ramblings you are obfuscating the most important issue. However offensive you find the drawing, it does not justify stifling freedom of expression. This man was convicted of the crimes of "defamation" and "racial agitation." The authorities did not define these terms in any discernible manner except that other people found his expression offensive. The vagueness of that law, and the broad discretion that the government has to prosecute someone on such vague premises, presents a threat to freedom of speech and expression to all free men. Today they came after Mr. Dan Park. Tomorrow they can come after any of us.

And your observations about Jamaica are gibberish. That is merely testimony to the fact that you and others are intolerant of those who express an opinion that you find offensive.

You can pretend that you are part of whatever human family to want. As for me, count me out of that human family. I am withdrawing from any human family that intends to curtail my freedom of speech.
07:14 January 28, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
Global Macro Polo

Freedom of expression my ass! You sound like Daniel Hammarberg.

The issue is so central, to the extent that none of your ranting can obfuscate it.

It's the same hogwash justification touted by Jyllands-Posten and Lars Vilks and his ilk - as indeed that South African Apartheidist diplomat in "Lethal Weapon One", shouting "Diplomatic Immunity!" I don't buy such excuses from that genre of humanity.

Tragedy is if you are already confused with a lot of other kinds of unintelligible gibberish circulating in your head head, no currents of lucidity will ever straighten you out or give you a clean bill of health - and that observation too comes under your " Freedom of Speech" - Perhaps you would prefer to extend that freedom a little by making it "unlimited freedom of expression"? I wouldn't recommend that you push your luck by trying that luck in Trench town, going around with a rope … just symbolically speaking, with which to capture somebody or hanging a few posters of Marcus Garvey with a slave collar around his neck and telling the good people on the street that your Negro slave has just run away.

Neither Carl Bildt nor His majesty JC would be able to save you.....

Part of my freedom consists in taking offence and refusing to tolerate what is so obviously inhuman. So who is the bigot, you or me? Black or White? You sound as if you want me to follow the Jesus dictum, "And if your eye offend you, pluck it out, and cast it from you: it is better for you to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire."

In which case you could start with yourself....

"Park created and distributed posters with a picture of Jallow Momodou of the National Afro-Swedish Association (Afrosvenskarnas riksförbund) superimposed on the image of a naked man in chains."Our negro slave has run away," read the text on the posters." :

This "man" is guilty of defamation and worse.

No one has stifled " Freedom of expression" - your man has violated the rules and been punished by the Law makers. It's as simple as that. You could appeal on his behalf, get a more qualified legal attorney to present his case.
09:22 January 28, 2012 by jostein
"That was an innocent, living soul that he was making such a gross caricature of to his own delight and for no reason other than that Mr. Momodou Jallow had objected - in the same manner that all the sympathy to victims of the trans-Atlantic Slave Trade and their descendants in the African Diaspora West, in Africa-America and the Caribbean and Brazil, Venezuela, Peru, Panama , the UK - and here in Sweden object to in the clearest, strongest, most uncompromising terms."

Jallow Momodou is a political player that uses the atlantic slavetrade as one of his most potent tools. Even thou it has absolutely nothing to do with sweden and even thou it had rather little to do with skin color, most people crossing the atlantic before 1850 did it as slaves. Your description of him as a "innocent" is innane, he was trying to squeeze power and influence and money out of some studentspex. As we say in sweden, those that play the game must the game endure.
18:40 January 28, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg

That's what was said about the Rev Jesse Jackson too, in an earlier thread, when he (like any normal human being) objected to those goings on in Lund.

In the sense in which you mean it, I'd say that every black man is a political player - in defence of his human skin and his right to exist - it's a reflex act of self-awareness in the world in which we live. It's a sacred responsibility.


And jostein, of course it has something to do with skin colour - are we not to suppose that if the Lund students had only been impersonating white trash, Mr. Jallow could have been indifferent ?

The Nobel Peace Laureate, the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King says that "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere". I can think of many places in the world where Dan Park's ass would be grass if he lacked the instinct of self-awareness/ self-preservation and that special sense of human dignity, human solidarity, human responsibility - call it what you will, and did what he did...

In his extempore acceptance speech after the special award at the Memorial Service for the Martyrs of the Holocaust at Stockholm's Great Synagogue, Göran Persson was superb. All of what he said should be noted down and quoted and applied ( as if he was the great dictator)

In short, Hillel's dictum applies :"That which is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow."

Here's my favourite version of that dictum:


One more word to Global Macro the Celt : The Hyde Park Speakers Corner is the liberated zone which you seek - but beware! Even there it's not everything goes! You are not supposed to say anything unbecoming about Her Majesty....

To all of us Rabbi Hillel's other dictum should give more room for thought and right action: "If Not Now, When? "If I am not for myself, then who will be for me? And if I am only for myself, then what am I? And if not now, when?"
19:43 January 28, 2012 by Gamla Hälsingebock
The buying and selling of people has/had been legal since the beginning of mankind.

All races suffered from it...why is it only that some people blame others for what was commonly shared treatment for all of us, and has been for a long time over and done with.

Why would something that was once legal, be a problem in today's world.

Using the "slave card" as a protest is something we all can do.

21:42 January 28, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
Old Hälsinge goat,

It would be interesting to hear your views about this hot topic:

Reparations for slavery...
22:49 January 28, 2012 by Gamla Hälsingebock
Let's also have reparations for Islamic incursions into Europe...Return Constantinople!!!!!!!!!!!...LOL

That should provoke mild discussion!
23:10 January 28, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
David Horowitz had his say so on the subject of REPARATIONS and I thought that this would be a golden opportunity for you and your allies to let off some of the steam that's trapped inside you.

Come on Gamla Hälsingebock, don't let your comrades down.

You say to the Turks, " Return Constantinople !"

The Arabs might say to you, " Return all that oil!"

The Brothers and Sisters are beating their chests and saying , " We built America"

"Original Black Man" is is probably waiting in the wings to tell you that if you still don't like it, you could return to Africa, where you and the rest of mankind came from, originally.
23:34 January 28, 2012 by Gamla Hälsingebock
I think the "original black man" did not practice multiculturism and ethnic diversity because he chased whitey and the yellow and brown dudes out of his hood!

He kept that beautiful real estate for himself and forced others to fend for themselves in hardship and duress.

Not a nice guy!...LOL
00:24 January 29, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
You mean that he is the father of ethnic cleansing?

Is that what really happened? I thought that those you call whitey, yellow and Brown were all originally like Adam (darkies) - and that some of them went in search of greener pastures, moved up North and over time became blonde and blue-eyed Scandinavians/ Vikings and never re-turned to their origins.

So the beautiful piece of real estate is where OBM found himself after he and Eve were chucked out of the Garden of Eden after being deceived by the subtile serpent?

You or Jonas Sjöstedt could tell him that all the minerals in the Congo, Zambia, Namibia, South Africa belonged to us all originally and that we should share it all, equally.

Have just listened to Göran Persson one more time on STV Play and ama listening to this presently:

01:20 January 29, 2012 by Gamla Hälsingebock
The Bible and evolution as fact, in one reply?
07:20 January 29, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
Now I know where I am and who I'm dealing with. Last time I ran into this kind of problem, I had clearly finished talking about homosexuality, and my next paragraph was about the brainwashing of children into terrorism - in one and the same short posting.....(horrifying how many subjects you find in the index of one book!

Old Goat from Hälsinge,

I wasn't pulling your leg I swear!

I was only pulling the hair in your beard

(the goatee of the randy Hälsinge goat)

not the monkey by his tail.....

Where is yer sense of humour?

Evolution ? (MY ancestors were not apes - hell no! And don't tell him that you were only joking when you tell that to an Afrikan!


Still thinking about all the minerals in the Congo, Zambia, Namibia, South Africa, so

I like this Rumi's diction here:


Biblical facts! Eve from Adam's rib after the Lord caused him to fall into a deep sleep,

Jesus turned water into wine, split the Red Sea, made the sun stand still, ascended to heaven etc. (The Bible e is not a history book composed of Gradgrindian facts about which you may swear by your beard.....

By ed-you-ka-tion and a natural bent acquired over many lifetimes I stopped being a sceptic a long time ago, helped by Joseph Campbell's work on myths.......

Now that you mention it, apart from Bible and evolution on the same line, in the same breath ( very important) I see a little mention of Marx (Jonas Sjöstedt) and if you look a little deeper Freud will pop up ( no not just "Moses and Monotheism")

You've heard of Hanuman? Some say that he cropped up in Hindu mythology, as the dark fellow (Dravidian) counter-distinguishable from the wheat coloured Aryan - but N.B: Krishna is blue ( as in the Swedish flag) - not yellow, like Yellow-man......

Fact is that theories of evolution have fed a lot of racist attitudes, to wit that on the evolutionary scale the darker skinned species are sill climbing the evolutionary ladder, are still closer to your cousins the monkeys, apes and gorillas in the continent of Mother Africa.( and they say that's why we excel in boxing and at the Olympic games ( raw animal power) …..

Anyway, all of the above is irrelevant. Black man is angry : Why do you studiously avoid giving us some noble thoughts about REPARATIONS!:

13:51 January 29, 2012 by Reason abd Realism
The usual dividing line between acceptable and unacceptable 'art' is the creation of defamatary images that include the combination of real people and real events.

For example you could be sued if you made a poster of a politician (real person) releasing gas into a Holocaust gas chamber (real event), even though the politician may not have been alive at the time of the Holocaust.

In this case the real person is Momodou and the real event is the slave trade, and importantly there is no hint of hypocrisy or conflict of interest on Momodou's part (which could be the case if for example it was known that he employed an army of immigrants at slave wages to rennovate and clean his apartment).

For these reasons I for one am not upset that this so-called 'artist' was fined.
18:51 January 29, 2012 by Gamla Hälsingebock
@ Cornelius Hamelberg

Reparations for something that was legal, hhmmmn.

OK just to keep you happy...lets begin with the theory that the seller is guilty, a la drugs, illegal substances, etc.. A people dealer!

Then use the most modern instance of criminality, you know the one that is always mentioned at the expense of others that shared the same fate.

All the riches you mentioned should be used to pay reparations for the fact that one man sold his "brutha"

out...and I mean really out...out of your Eden...so, to speak.

Ergo: Africa should be the first place to apply the reparations you so desperately seek.
20:35 January 29, 2012 by swedejane
Clearly, your freedom of speech ends when it crosses into harassment. Had he not been so vicious in targeting a specific individual, by superimposing his head on the offensive imagery AND including his contact information, I would agree that it's a freedom of speech issue. However, he did cross the line and it seems reasonable to require a fine to be paid. Harassment of private individuals is not covered by "freedom of speech".
10:06 January 30, 2012 by jostein
#18 Cornelius Hamelberg

Reparations for slavery? By whom? An absolute majority of americans, white and black, are descendents of slaves. There is no other way to describe the endentured servant contracts under which most people crossed the atlantic than slavery. The deathtoll was just as high as for black slavery, higher even during the actual servitude since the slavery of the endentured servant was limited in time.

Furthermore, alot of the endentured servants were sold by their parents/legal guardians, others were kidnapped so the argument that endentured servitude was volontary is only partially true. So, who is going to repair who?

15:19 January 30, 2012 by Swedishmyth
I'm an atheist but stuff like this makes me want to say "God bless the First Amendment of the United States Constitution".
01:47 January 31, 2012 by Global Macro
Swedishmyth, you are right. But the world is full of ignorant, poorly educated people like Hamelberg above. Notice how even many others above digress into talking about slavery or diversity. They do not get it. They do not understand the importance of freedom of speech. They don't see a threat when the government is empowered to define what expressions of opinion should be protected. It is not about the speech; it is about freedom of speech. The shame is that in many supposedly modern, englighted places like Sweden are populated with very many people like Hamelberg. You know that we could recite many western European countries where the laws on free speech have been written by the Hamelbergs of the world.
19:42 January 31, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
I'm not the only person in my great family called Hamelberg, so "Global Macro", approach me and the name with respect.

A modern man doesn't understand about freedom of speech?

Racist dunces like Global Macro will never get it right; probably needs a microchip implant to kick- start mental faculty into some awareness - and even then with all due respect to freedom of speech, ignorance will remain relative, perhaps even anonymous.

Consider. Even unlimited freedom of speech (the freedom to create) won't protect you from the consequences of wagging an idle tongue or an idle tail.

Being the bigot you are, you should start getting worried, when immigrants start demanding reparations and compensation for merely being here and having to put up with idiots like yourself.

Of course when honourable immigrant citizens start making these kind of demands, the SD kind of people should be very happy , as it would give some extra sparkle & fuel to their cause.....

What a very trite discussion....
00:35 February 4, 2012 by Coalbanks
If the slaves had been European/Caucasin/white and the slave seller African/black, Moslem/Arabic, Turkish, or Asian?
01:14 February 4, 2012 by Global Macro
Yes, Coalbanks, the principle would be the same. It is not about the speech; it is about freedom of speech. What they have done is to convict Park of a crime because he did to "disparaged" or "insulted" or "offended" someone. That is a very vague standard to define a criminal offense. In order to afford the entire society freedom of speech, what constitutes a crime must be defined very carefully and very precisely. If they can convict Park fo the crime of "disparagement," "insult" or "offending," then your any my freedom of speech are at risk. Freedom of speech and expression is probably the most fundamental right and the most essential to a free country. It has been profoundly curtailed in Sweden. And it is a larger societal problem when many people (in Sweden and many other places) agree with knuckle draggers like Hamelberg.
16:22 February 4, 2012 by axiom
I am a liberal, simply put. I believe that one must be free to live his life the way he desires without any unduly control by state or law. However all freedoms must be exercised responsibly. This is simply the way it works in civilized societies.

A key point in this case, is that the act was targetted at an individual, as highlighted in the image, not a general statement of ones opinion. That is not exactly freedom of expression, if it weren't so where would we draw the line with libel, defamation and character assassinations.

One cannot use his freedoms as the basis for excluding or attacking any other person. I could drive past someones house every day at 12 shouting "local paedophile", and invoke free speech.

As for those referring to the great first ammendment, think of the family who wakes up at nights to find wooden crosses burning outside their house, finally police manage to catch the group doing it, drag them to court and they are set free to continue doing so as they invoke their right to free speech. It has been used to justify segregation, anti-semantism and sexual discrimination.

I grew up in a very multicultural society and never learnt the significance of highlighting someone's ethnicity.
17:52 February 4, 2012 by Global Macro
34, axiom, I accept your point that freedoms are not absolute, including of speech. But I don't think your examples are valid here because what Park was convicted of here was not really defamation, a false allegation of fact against the target. No one would seriously interpret Park's poster as literally meaning that the target of the attack was really a runaway slave. Park was convicted of merely being offensive. "In convicting Parks of racial agitation, the court found that the artist's freedom of expression claims didn't hold up as the posters were needlessly insulting and an attack on the rights of dark skinned people. As a result, the court reasoned, Park must have realized that the posters would result in both Momodou and Lavesson being disparaged by others, making Parks guilty of defamation." Parks was convicted of being "needlessly insulting"?????

Axiom, what are the rights of "dark skinned people" that were violated here? The right to be free of racial agitation? And what constitutes racial agitation? Anything that is offensive? And apparently such statements would not be a crime if directed at someone other than "dark skinned people." So, if someone were to take your likeness and depict you in an insulting way on a poster, maybe that person could be prosecuted for a crime, and maybe not.

What this court has determined is that if your or my freedom of expression is not protected if we make a statement that is "needlessly insulting and an attack on the rights of dark skinned people." That is a very vague definition of defamation. If you are truly a liberal, you should not want your freedom of expression hanging on such a slender thread.

If freedom of expression is to be protected, then whether a statement is offensive should be beside the point. Freedom of expression means nothing if it protects only speech that is not offensive. Freedom of speech is essential to a healthy society, and often it ought to be offensive and needlessly insulting to the status quo, to the comfortable, to those in positions of power.

And by the way, wouldn't many "dark skinned people" find the use of the phrase "dark skinned people" insulting? Don't the Politically Correct Police now require us to say "people of color" or simply "minorities"? I think that this judge be investigated for his insulting, defamatory and racially agitating statements? It certainly falls within the penumbra of "racial agitation" as he has so loosely defined it.
22:52 February 4, 2012 by axiom
I do not entertain the phrase "dark skinned people". We are quite happy being called black people because that is a statement of fact and we are proud of it. But in reality it means nothing.

Don't try to pussyfoot this with "likeness"; race, religion, sexuality, gender, etc have long been sensitive areas and have been considered with more scrutiny. Try painting an image highlighting a woman to be weak because of her gender and I am sure the result wouldn't be much different.

If this artist made an impression of black people in in shackles in support of his case, of course that's his right and I can have no objection to that. If he took my picture, as a black person, and portayed me in shackles then distribute them around town then I'm sorry, it has gotten personal and you can't try to hide behind free speech. I should feel that I can live alongside you, we have a disagreement for whatever reason and we can argue about it and settle it without you needlessly feeling compelled to point out my ethnicity and and then use it as a tool for a negative attack. I repeat, this was intended to be negative, not positive even if it was meant as a joke.

This was targeted and orchestrated at a single person, there is a difference. Of all the millions of permutations you could use to highlight your cause, the only one that seemed pluasible was labelling the young man as a runway slave.They didn't portray him as a black man which he is, they portrayed him as the classless inferior slave that has run away from his masters. If thats what you can see him as, as a young educated Lund student of tomorrow doesn't he have a right to be upset. And who goes around mesauring peoples "offendability" if he reported it he was offended thats the way it works. Who says black people are not offended, I am black and I most certainly am. The others you mentioned, no we are not offended so we have not complained, simple.

Freedom of expression underpins any society, in fact so does every other constitutional provision. But there are reasons why we have considered boundaries within such freedoms can be exercised. Its no different from saying, you have the right to bear arms, this doesn't mean that we permit everyone to be armed with as many types of weapons as possible because civil reason demands that such rights and freedoms are undertaken with some level of civility and consideration for society in general.
04:05 February 5, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
C'mon "Global Macro"

You have now repeated yourself ad nauseum. By the way, my daughter who is a gold medallist in Law from the University of London, did some special work on the European Convention on Human Rights. My other daughter is an expert on Diversity Management. I'll phone them tomorrow for their opinion about the Lund incident.

You would like to think big? You certainly give that impression. But whether or not you are big-hearted or capable of thinking big is quite another matter. Wanting to be big at least in my eyes, you've chosen to baptise yourself with such a grandiosely superlative name as "Global" and "Macro", so you could perhaps deign to put on your thinking cap if you have one and start thinking locally and not globally about what happened in Lund by turning on your little micro bio-computer to full alert as you read and digest this :

"....street artist Dan Park was handed a fine and a suspended sentence after being convicted on Thursday of defamation and racial agitation in connection with posters he made after students staged a "slave auction" at Lund University."

I'm sure that you would object to someone imposing a picture of your noble visage onto a naked body that for better or for worse wasn't yours and distributing such a poster to passers-by. I should think that it would be some sort of defamation, unless of course you had no shame.

Until then could you please leave my name out of any further nonsense that you feel compelled to communicate?

Thank you.
07:48 February 5, 2012 by Global Macro
Hamelberg, if you have thin skin then you should not make personal attacks on others. When you call me names I will most certainly reply appropriately. And don't flatter yourself that I give the least thought to how I appear in your eyes.

I am sure that your daughters are good kids but they have chosen dubious areas of study, no doubt under your influence. The European Convention on Human Rights and Diversity Management? No Hamelberg, we all know what that means. Those are soft areas of pursuit. The first is a radical left wing, anti-democratic sinecure; the second is a soft area of study that is set aside for minorities, to pretend that it is a serious area of study. And although this is true, anyone who says so is quickly called a racist. That is the strategy that you radical lefties always play.

Finally, Global Macro is has nothing to do with political philosophy. It is simply a term that is used by some investors to describe a kind of investment strategy. When I read about it I thought it was interesting so I borrowed it.
09:32 February 5, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
Global Macro,

Freedom of Speech:

"When arrogance appears, disgrace follows" ( Proverbs 11.2)

I must admit that my heart almost skipped a beat when I zapped thru yer first words " I am sure that your daughters are good kids " at which point I thought,. " ah he has repented, and so I too have relented" as I was feeling all softened but then came your big butt about " dubious studies"

It was over a decade ago that I discussed the issue of gender relations as defined by the e European Convention and was enlightened by my daughter - as I'm sure you would be if you discussed the Slave Auction with her or with Ruth Bader Ginsburg. The philosophy of the Law has its own special charm - at least she tells me that she's in love with The Law.....

I suppose that you believe that Barack Obama's area of study is what you would characterise as "dubious"too - well, let me tell you, in her first year of study, she won the Monarch's prize for England and Wales. Do you think that Her Majesty gives such awards for " dubious areas of study"? Don't you know that lawyers are among the most conservative folks in the world?

Let me tell you this if you go on saying things that I find insulting I'll go on reserving the first uppercut for a time which I hope you will cause to come soon, so that the undertaker will come and remove your carcass from here or you yourself will choose to stay away for a while or reappear under another name.

Get off it, you are no George Soros and he certainly not would not support your position, although he is a global macro man, the difference being that in your world of better and best, he's bigger and better and richer than an anonymous petit poisson like you or Park will will ever be ( especially after suffering that 10,000 kronor fine for his street art.)

Global Macro how could you be so bereft of what we ordinary humans call "a sense of humour" that you can miraculously read with all your eyes and ears open and miss everything?

For the same perverse reasons you continue to preserve your identity under the cloak of pompous anonymity as a sort of global financier or whatever, probably laden with the wealth precious minerals and precious metals, one who though he knows that " time is money" prefers to pass away his time here idly attacking Momodou Jallow's right to self-esteem and trying to belittle others who are verifiably (documented) as intelligent...

Why should the spectre of lefty so scare the poopoo out of you - are you the new McCarthy?

Just for the record, my second daughter started off with a Masters in Theology (her grandfather was a classmate of Baron Ramsey of Canterbury.) so stop your presumptions

N: B: I am neither a Lefty nor am I "radical".

There is an article by Erik Åsbrink in today's DN . I wonder what you think of it....

Wishing you a sunny afternoon.

Peace& Love

20:14 February 5, 2012 by Global Macro
I consider anyone a radical lefty who wants to deprive free people of their freedom of speech. That includes not only you, but also the European Commission, George Soros, Barack Hussein Obama, and Ruth Ginsberg. These people and many others use the law and their interpretation of human rights to infringe on the liberty of free people. It is a kind of Orwellian Newspeak. The Park case is just one of many that I could cite as examples where the courts or a commission has interpreted human rights to deprive people of human rights. When a restraint on freedom of speech is defined so broadly and vaguely as "needlessly insulting," it presents a threat many people. Freedom of speech means that one is not permitted to say something that is "needlessly insulting." And when a new freedom is created, such as the right of a certain class of citizens to be free from "needlessly insulting" speech, that empowers the government because the government gets to serve as the arbiter of whether words were "needlessly insulting," who gets the benefit of the new right, and who gets prosecuted for violation of that right.

I accept the fact that freedom of speech is not a value that you hold in great respect. Nor is it important to the judge who decided the Park case. Nor is it important to many people in western Europe. That is one of the reasons that western Europe is imploding.
22:54 February 5, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
Supercilious crackpot theories are hereby granted freedom of expression.

Sounds like you would like to dispense with governments, law and order altogether.

I just watched Ghana beat the racist Arabs of Tunisia and I shudder to think what would have happened if that uncle tom referee from Cameroon had been absent.

Of course if I had been the referee Tunisia would have been down to about five men before the end of the match.....for headbutts, kicking Ghanaian players in the chest
06:33 February 6, 2012 by Global Macro
Racism is a claim that permeates many of your blogs, not only in response to my comments but also to others on this chain. "racist," "uncle tom," "bigot." It is because your positions are ignorant and poorly informed. You have nothing to say on the merits of your positions. Your vision of a progressive society is one of intolerance and ignorance. I suppose someone is supposed to be impressed by your disjointed ramblings through quotes from the Bible, Martin Luther King, Marx (Karl, not Groucho) and Kofi Annan without really saying anything of substance.
08:54 February 6, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
Global Macro,

I am not a racist. In all my life I have never personally experineced racism at the hand of any Arab.

Before you pss away, please show me where racism "permeates" many of my blogs.....

I don't even know whether you are a sick man or a woman.

You have a problem. I don't. I love.


Ignorance is your favourite word, that's why you could bow down to explain a name that is common knowledge.....

I have never been personally oppressed in this life or suffered want - am self-confidence, happy and to tell you the truth you are irrelevant. Or do you think that my hobby is mainly listening to the profound thoughts of "Global Macro"?

For the racist, the bigot & the uncle tom at least there's some hope of redemption....

Rave on! Let the free word reign. You should be amplifying your thoughts in some learned legal journal or having a dialogue with Beatrice Ask or Thomas Bodström.....

Tell me: What more do you have to say of substance?

When some poetry rimes in your mind, like Wallace Stevens, W. H. Auden, I will not necessarily pay you more attention......

Until then,

have a good day

Keep on trucking …
18:47 February 6, 2012 by bethrichardson
I have to say, I find both the antics of the students at the party and the posters very offensive. I would not care to associate with someone who thinks that behavior is ok. BUT I do not think this man is guilty of a crime. As JimmyJames said (post #7), every single day things are said and done which are offensive to me, and if not to me, than to someone else. Living in this world means accepting that which you don't 100% agree with and learning to get along with other people anyway. Freedom of speech MUST be protected, even if people find that speech offensive.
19:47 February 6, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg

The posters were insensitive, distasteful and as you say, offensive.

No normal person would like his or her face super-imposed over a naked body and distributed as a poster, to all and sundry, certainly not in the name of " freedom of speech"

As to the offensiveness being criminal, he got off with a suspended sentence and a small fine.

Who know, perhaps the mild sentence might have been enough to deter him from repeating the offence - and should he do so, as a repeat offence he could receive a stiffer sentence and pay a bigger fine for his intransigence.

Global Macro@42

Freedom of speech eh?

You say I quote "Marx (Karl, not Groucho)"?

Looka here little bugger, I don't even quote Karl Kilbom ( and I'm much closer to him than to Karl Marx). Do you mind showing me where I quoted Marx?

Secondly, since the subject matter concerns 'negro slave taunt' ( racially taunting) isn't it inevitable that some discussion take place?

I have said what I have to say. You probably want to add to your magnum opus in which case the space is still free, although perhaps it's not the right venue for your pseudo-intellectual legalisms.

Another little bugger (a professor of Law, a friend of mine) has been asking me whether you have a background in law, so that you can be on the same page...

It's a good day today, so let's celebrate Queen Elisabeth II ( I was a kid growing up in England in 1953 the year of her Coronation - where were you? )
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