The strange death of individual liberties

Op-ed views and opinions expressed are solely those of the author.

All individual rights, including freedom of religion, stem from freedom of speech and freedom of the press. Without the two of them, we have nothing. Both of these concepts have been bequeathed to the United States by the tradition of common law that evolved in England over a thousand-year period. We owe a tremendous debt to the Anglo-Saxon-Norman legal tradition. In a strange and perverse development, a concerted attack on individual liberties is being waged in the UK. The birthplace of our legal traditions is turning into a police state.

Let me put the situation in perspective. Gangs of Muslim men have raped thousands—that’s right, THOUSANDS—of young, often underage, white girls in towns in the north of England. The government in the UK has been reluctant to acknowledge the existence of these gangs, known euphemistically as “Asian grooming gangs.” They are in reality Muslim rape gangs. The police do not arrest them and the courts do not prosecute them. The government discourages criticism of its immigration policies and labels dissenters as racists. Many cases remain unreported because victims are often ostracized by their communities if they go public with allegations of abuse.

Douglas Murray, British author of The Strange Death of Europe, commented on the disgraceful crisis in National Review:

“For years the British state allowed gangs of men to rape thousands of young girls across Britain. For years the police, politicians, Crown Prosecution Service, and every other arm of the state ostensibly dedicated to protecting these girls failed them. As a number of government inquires have concluded, they turned their face away from these girls because they were terrified of the accusations of racism that would come their way if they did address them. They decided it wasn’t worth the aggravation.”


Tommy Robinson, a controversial conservative activist, did not turn away. In 2018, he attempted to expose the failure of British justice and was punished for it. Robinson was arrested for snapping photos of defendants in a rape trial as they entered a courthouse in Leeds, England. In the tiny space of five hours, Robinson was surrounded by police, arrested, tried, convicted, and sentenced to 13 months in jail. It took years for the British legal system to bring the Muslim rape gangs to justice but Robinson was given his justice in a few hours.

“Where was the swift justice for the victims of the grooming gangs?” asked irate British journalist Katie Hopkins. Robinson “has been treated with greater suspicion and a greater presumption of guilt by the United Kingdom,” said Douglas Murray, “than any Islamic extremist or mass rapist ever has been.”

Robinson was thrown in prison because the British justice system ruled that reporting on the rape trials is illegal. It also ruled that reporting on Robinson’s arrest is illegal. Douglas Murray expressed his fear of being prosecuted for writing about Robinson in National Review, even though it is not a British publication. This contempt for freedom of speech and the press is a warning to America.

“Britain used to be a bastion of free speech,” lamented Dutch conservative politician Geert Wilders. “Today its leaders are behaving like North Korea and Saudi Arabia.”

Instead of defending freedom of the press, the mainstream UK media celebrated Tommy Robinson’s conviction. “It is more important for them to be seen as multicultural and accepting and welcoming to our Muslim colleagues and friends,” said Katie Hopkins, “than to stand up for what is right.”

What does this amount to? “We no longer have freedom of speech,” says Hopkins. “These are very dark times for the UK. The country is on a knife edge. There is a real sense now that we are against our own government, that the establishment is working against us and in order to cleanse voices it doesn’t like, it will put them inside for as long as it takes to shut them up.”

As in other parts of Europe, the UK has strong “hate speech” laws. The penalties for hate speech include fines, imprisonment, or both. For practical purposes, “hate speech” includes anything critical of the Islamic religion, Muslim immigration, or Muslims. Criticize Muslim “grooming gangs” and you will be put behind bars. In effect, Islamic blasphemy laws are now the law of the land in the UK. And so you have the cruel fate of Tommy Robinson, who faced the threat of assault by Muslim gangs inside the prison where he was committed while Muslim rape gangs were free to poison the towns and villages of England with their heinous crimes.

Thousands of angry Brits marched in support of Robinson. Not only are individual freedoms being trampled upon in the UK, but elected politicians are ignoring the voices of their constituents. The same impetus that drives the UK to trash its most treasured liberties is alive and well in the US. Under Biden and Obama, the Democratic Party has engaged in a campaign to destroy the First Amendment. Free speech is regarded by the American Left as an outdated concept.

“People who defend and extol free speech,” says author and psychologist Jordan Peterson, “tend to be branded as right-wingers.” Mark Steyn, author of America Alone, observed that the US is turning into “one vast college campus” where there is one politically correct view and all others are prohibited.

How long will it be before Democratic politicians introduce bills designed to eviscerate the First Amendment? How long before we are prohibited from criticizing illegal immigration? Or the outcome of the 2020 election? Or man-made global warming? Or the efficacy of COVID vaccines? If it can happen in the UK, it can happen here. The one-sided January 6th investigation is proof that it is happening here. We must defend our constitutional rights and privileges before we, too, become a police state.

Ed Brodow is a conservative political commentator and author of nine books including his new #1 Amazon Best Seller, AMERICA ON ITS KNEES: The Cost of Replacing Trump with Biden. His website is


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