Free speech is dying

The nation that invented individual liberty has abandoned it:

A 22-year-old man has been charged on suspicion of making malicious comments on Facebook following the murder of British soldier Lee Rigby.

Benjamin Flatters, from Lincoln, was arrested last night after complaints were made to Lincolnshire Police about comments made on Facebook, which were allegedly of a racist or anti-religious nature.

He was charged with an offence of malicious communications this afternoon in relation to the comments, a Lincolnshire Police spokesman said.

(Via Power Line.)

We don’t know the specifics of the “malicious comments”, but they don’t matter. If the comments weren’t inciting violence (which is not reported, and presumably would have been had it been so), they should have been protected speech, and once would have been, no matter how offensive they might be.

Fortunately this could never happen in America. Oh, dang:

The [Eastern District of Tennessee’s] top federal prosecutor, Bill Killian, will address a topic that most Americans are likely unfamiliar with, even those well versed on the Constitution; that federal civil rights laws can actually be violated by those who post inflammatory documents aimed at Muslims on social media. “This is an educational effort with civil rights laws as they play into freedom of religion and exercising freedom of religion,” Killian says in the local news story. “This is also to inform the public what federal laws are in effect and what the consequences are.”

(Via Instapundit.)

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