After protesting the construction of a Mosque in his area, 27-year-old Blair Cottrell of Australia posted a video of the demonstration to Facebook. He is now facing up to 6 months in jail for creating content that “may be offensive to Muslims.”
In 2015, Cottrell and some friends staged a mock beheading of a dummy in protest of the 2015 Parramatta shooting and subsequent plans to construct a mosque in Bendigo. He later uploaded footage of the event to Facebook.
They did not break windows. They did not assault people who do not share their views. No buildings were looted or set ablaze.
Yet, Cottrell is now facing four criminal charges for being “offensive.”
The most serious charge reads that Cottrell “on the grounds of religious belief or activity of another person or class of persons, namely Muslims, knowingly engaged in conduct being the participation in the making of a video with the intention of inciting serious contempt for, or revulsion or severe ridicule of, that other person or class of persons.”
If I crucified a dummy would I be charged with inciting ridicule of Christians? No way. Why the special privileges for Islam?
— Blair Cottrell 🇦🇺 (@blaircottrell89) July 23, 2017
Cottrell is the first in the nation to face this specific charge under the Racial and Religious Tolerance Act of 2001. If convicted, he told Big League Politics that he believes this will be a major step towards destroying free speech.
The activist explained that “the charge specifically states that the offence was ‘participating in the making of the video’, so the action of the mock-beheading itself is not the issue, only sharing the video of it to Facebook.”
“This particular charge has never been used before in Australian history, so it’s a precedent case – meaning the state of Victoria is trying to set a new standard and legal precedent by convicting me. Basically, if they win it means they can forever use my case as a basis for charging and convicting anyone who says anything they don’t like in the future. It’s a big move toward speech-control in Australia,” Cottrell told Big League Politics.
Beyond the charges, Cottrell was also silenced by Facebook, who deleted his massive Facebook page, the United Patriots Front, as well as the personal pages of all admins. He stated that he was told this was done at the request of the Victoria Police Department.
“Facebook has since deleted my our Facebook page which had over 120k followers, and I was told by a ranking member of Victoria police that the shutdown of the page was the result of two government agencies putting pressure on Facebook to close it down, however I don’t have any actual evidence of that,” Cottrell said.
He added that, “after it was deleted I started up a public figure page named after myself to keep the following informed, it generated a following of just over 15k in three weeks before that was deleted too, in the same way.”
“Facebook has not given me any reason for why these pages were deleted, it simply deleted the pages and all accounts on the admin panels without explanation. The accounts are still not accessible. The original UPF page had over 20 personal accounts on the admin panel, all those accounts were deleted permanently along with the page,” Cottrell explained.
New FB page which gathered up 15 thousand followers in a month deleted again, for no specific reason. Barely even mentioned Muslims 🤔 pic.twitter.com/vKBtSxganx
— Blair Cottrell 🇦🇺 (@blaircottrell89) June 27, 2017
In a video posted to YouTube where Cottrell explained his charges, he noted that there have been multiple Antifa riots with significant violence and property damage in recent times — yet none of the militant protesters have faced charges, aside from one, for littering.
Out of the protests Cottrell discusses in the video, one specific incident stands out, as he is facing a charge of ‘defacement of property’ for accidentally spilling fake blood on a public sidewalk.
In November, protesters outside of parliament filled the entire fountain with blood in protest of refugee detention camps. Additionally, the Antifa demonstrators shut down Parliament as some stormed the building, some stood in the fountain, and others unfurled a banner reading “close the bloody camps now #justice4refugees” from the roof.
“I’m looking at 6 months jail for that, whereas Leftists can storm Parliament House, shut it down for a day, climb onto the roof and fill a million dollar fountain with red food dye without consequence,” Cottrell told Big League.
None of the vandals appear to have been charged with property destruction over the stunt — which was undoubtedly more expensive to clean up than Cottrell’s minor spill. Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon even brought the pro-refugee demonstrators chocolates and congratulated them on their protest after Parliament was halted.
“It’s obvious that at a government and institutional level there is a strong effort being made to excuse leftist violence and promote leftist ideology. In conjunction with this, Conservatives and Patriots in Australia are attacked, slandered, ridiculed and in my particular case, dragged through the courts with criminal charges for ‘offensive speech,'” Cottrell added. “All of this seems to happening in western nations world wide. It’s a relentless conspiracy and needs to be exposed as much as possible by anybody who still has the courage to tell the truth.”
When asked if his lawyers expect to beat the charge, Cottrell told Big League that “it’s new territory for any lawyer here in Victoria, so they can’t really say.”
Hearings in the case begin in September.
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Senator Rand Paul To Ask POTUS To Revoke John Brennan’s Security Clearance
In a set of tweets posted by Senator Rand Paul on Monday morning, the Kentucky Republican says he will be meeting with President Donald Trump to ask that CIA director John Brennan’s security clearance be revoked.
“Is John Brennan monetizing his security clearance? Is John Brennan making millions of dollars divulging secrets to the mainstream media with his attacks on @realDonaldTrump,” Paul tweeted Monday morning. “Today I will meet with the President and I will ask him to revoke John Brennan’s security clearance.”
This request by Senator Rand Paul comes on the heels of Tucker Carlson mentioning last week that Brennan still had a security clearance, despite no longer working for the federal government.
The Fox News host called Brennan an “out-of-the-closet extremist”, and further called for Brennan’s security clearance to be removed.
WATCH Sen. Rand Paul on the Tucker Carlson show here:
CIA directors typically hold on to their clearance for several years after they’ve left office, mainly so they are able to share insights with current directors.
Just last week Brennan used the words “nothing short of treasonous” to describe Trump’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, and claimed that it showed President Trump was “wholly in the pocket of Putin.”
Brennan, who served under former President Barack Obama, has been accused of political bias by several House Republicans suggesting that his bias may have prevented him from being impartial in 2016. On Sunday, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte said the committee is planning on calling in Brennan to testify.
During an interview with Maria Bartiromo on “Sunday Morning Futures”, Goodlatte said, “We have lots of questions for John Brennan and he will definitely be sought by the committees for an interview. The chairman continued,”This is an extremely disturbing thing to see both he and (former FBI Director) James Comey, supposedly impartial government officials carrying out their jobs in very important areas in intelligence gathering and law enforcement, express the kind of extreme bias that they’ve shown now,” Goodlatte, a Virginia Republican, said on Fox News. “which I think reflects quite accurately what they were doing back in 2016.”
Senator Rand Paul just blocked a resolution last week from Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) that would support the U.S. intelligence community’s assessment of Russian election interference, and that demanded the president speak with special counsel Robert Mueller, calling it “crazy hatred” and the resolution was just another sign of “Trump Derangement Syndrome”.
Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla) called ex-CIA chief Brennan a “disaster” while accusing him of being a member of the Communist Party during the Cold War. Brennan has admitted that he did indeed vote for the Communist Party’s presidential candidate in 1976, Gus Hall, claiming it was just his way of “signaling my unhappiness with the system, and the need for change.”
“John Brennan was a disaster as CIA director. He was a disaster as the counter-terrorism official. He was a member of the Communist Party during the Cold War,” DeSantis said on Fox News.
Should someone who has called the president “treasonous” have top secret clearance?
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