Another European Triumph for Human Rights (Hack, Cough)

Daniel J. Mitchell
Posted: Aug 06, 2012 12:01 AM

Centuries from now, I’m sure historians won’t bother teaching about the Magna Carta, the Constitution, the end of slavery, or the collapse of communism.

Instead, people who want to know about human rights will learn about these great European developments.

Now the Italians have taken the next step with a crucial legal decision that will enshrine an important basic freedom. What are we talking about, the right to free speech, the free exercise of religion, or the right to emigrate?

Don’t be silly, Italian courts have focused on something far more important.

Is this a hate crime?

Italy’s highest court has ruled that telling a man he has “no balls” as an insult is a crime punishable with a fine because it hurts male pride… The case was brought to the supreme court by a lawyer named only as Vittorio against his cousin Alberto, a justice of the peace, for the phrase uttered during a heated courtroom exchange in the southern Italian city of Potenza. “Apart from the vulgarity of the term used, the expression definitely also has an injurious quality,” the male judge, Maurizio Fumo, said in his ruling yesterday as quoted by Italian news agency ANSA. …Vittorio’s lawyer had argued that the expression implied that his client was “worth less than other men because he did not have the attributes.” A judge will now rule on the fine that Alberto should pay to Vittorio. The ruling, which comes after years of legal dispute, did not specify whether any insults against women should now also be considered crimes.

I wonder, based on the story, whether the court ruled against Alberto because of what he said, or because Vittorio actually is lacking certain…well, as the article says…”attributes.”

In any event, I suppose we should close with a more serious point. A big problem in Europe is that politicians and courts keep creating “rights” that require the erosion of other people’s liberties.

These so-called positive rights can only be fulfilled by taking away the freedom of other people. Not that the United States is immune to such nonsense. Here’s a horrifying video showing President Franklin Roosevelt discussing various “rights” to jobs, housing, healthcare, and education.

Contrast that awful video with the wise comments made in this video by another President.