By Amy Alkon
shared this story
from Advice Goddess Blog.
In What Universe Does This Seem A Wise Idea?
The West is getting less and less free.
Belgium has banned sexist speech, reports Eugene Volokh on his blog at WaPo, and there is prison time for anyone violating the ban. Rik Torfs, rector of the University of Leuven, and Jogchum Vrielink, coordinator of the Centre for Discrimination Law at the University of Leuven, passed this translation on to Eugene:
Penalization of Sexism
For the purposes of this Act, the concept of sexism will be understood to mean any gesture or act that, in the circumstances of Article 444 of the Penal Code,* is evidently intended to express contempt for a person because of his gender, or that regards them as inferior, or reduces them to their sexual dimension, and which has the effect of violating someone’s dignity.
Anyone found guilty of [such conduct] will be punished with a prison sentence of one month to one year, and a fine …, or one of these penalties alone…
* The relevant part of Article 444 Belgian Penal Code refers to the following circumstances/contexts in which the speech/conduct is required to take place:
“Either in public meetings or places;
Or in the presence of several people, in a place that is not public but accessible to a number of people who are entitled to meet or visit there;
Or in any place in the presence of the offended person and in front of witnesses;
It seems it is not just in America that there is a push to deem — and let’s be be honest who this is about — women eggshells and not equals.