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A Legal Lesson for Muslims Offended by Drawings

May 17, 2010

Zohaib Hisam is suggesting that Muslims could sue Facebook for hosting the group “Everybody Draw Mohammed Day“.  He’d also include Molly Norris and everyone who drew a picture of Mohammed.

Unfortunately, he doesn’t have any legal ground to stand on.  Here’s what he thinks that Facebook and the participants in the group are guilty of:

Incitement of violence under public order act – 1986 c4 (UK)

Patriot act – Public Law 107-56 – content in violation of publishing qualification, as it aims towards incitement of violence by minority Muslim groups within the jurisdiction of the United states. Content to be removed immediately under sections 201-225 – as it does not fall under the ECPA (electric communications privacy act) under its provocative nature, and qualifies for a precedent to a national security threat.

1969 Federal Civil Rights Law – qualifies for a ‘hate crime’- implies federal prosecution under 18 U.S.C. § 245 – “the US government shall prosecute in court anyone who willingly injures, intimidates or interferes with another person, or attempts to do so, by force because of the other person’s race, color, religion or national origin”.

US Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act (1994)28 U.S.C. § 994 – increases penalties of hate crimes to the level of federal crimes and crimes against the State.

See the problem?  This group is not an “incitement to violence.”  No Muslim has been injured, intimidated or interfered with. The group is for individuals exercising their right to freedom of speech by drawing pictures of a historical figure.  That’s all.

The only incitements to violence which I’ve read on Facebook related to this group was from Muslims against the participants  Can they be charged?

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