Jon Qwelane guilty of hate speech

2011-05-31 10:30

Johannesburg - Former Sunday Sun columnist Jon Qwelane was found guilty of hate speech by the Johannesburg Equality Court on Tuesday.

The court found that a cartoon in his column amounted to hate speech, and that both his article and the cartoon propagated hatred and harm.

The article was published in the newspaper on July 20, 2008, under the headline: "Call me names, but gay is NOT okay".

Qwelane was ordered to make an unconditional apology to the gay and lesbian community, and pay R100 000 to the SA Human Rights Commission.

Qwelane is currently South Africa's ambassador to Uganda, where an anti-gay bill that would have imposed the death penalty for homosexual acts was recently shelved, following international condemnation.

  • Yala - 2011-05-31 11:39

    Give that man a Bells!

  • Craig44 - 2011-05-31 11:41

    About time that (Dumb)Ass got knocked down a few notches. He is nothing but a racist bigot who shouldn't be aloud near a newspaper.

  • Azazel - 2011-05-31 11:43

    homosexuality...LOL...nature's practical joke :)

  • ExRecce - 2011-05-31 11:44

    It's hate speech to SAY "gay not ok"??????? To say "Kill a Boer" is not!!!!!!!!!!! WTF? WTF WTF? WTF?

      EugeneF - 2011-05-31 12:08

      Oce again - wait for judgement to be passed. I happen to be a Boer too, and also agree that the saying amounts to hate speech.

  • Wessel van den Berg - 2011-05-31 11:47

    Great news - Thank you for the info :)

  • oliver.macrae - 2011-05-31 11:51

    Everybody should stop being so sensitive. It seems in this day and age people can't wait to call someone a racist or a sexist or find some reason to bitch about ANYTHING. If a gay person were to say he was offended by being called straight, who would care? NOBODY. But the other way around and all hell breaks loose. In my opinion it's the minorities trying to empower themselves with anything possible. If the gay community still has issues with being called gay or are offended by the word, then obviously being gay is a sensitive issue, which takes the whole pride thing out of the picture...

  • Mike - 2011-05-31 11:51

    "Hate speech is a communication that carries no meaning other than the expression of hatred for some group, especially in circumstances in which the communication is likely to provoke violence. It is an incitement to hatred primarily against a group of persons defined in terms of race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and the like. Hate speech can be any form of expression regarded as offensive to racial, ethnic and religious groups and other discrete minorities or to women." Reading some of the preceding comments, it would seem, by this definition, that several people have been provoked toward hatred and in turn themselves may indeed be guilty of hate speech.

  • GinSA1 - 2011-05-31 11:51

    This is the content of the offending Article, published on 27 July 2008, and NOT by : Oh dear, here we go yet again. The Anglican Church is heading for a split in its ranks, and homosexuals are the reason. The church faces the first real schism since the day Henry VIII walked angrily out of the Catholic community to lead his own faction, because Rome would not sanction his marriage to Anne Boleyn, his brother's widow. This time some leftists among the Anglican Communion want not only more homosexuals ordained as bishops, but women as well. The real problem, as I see it, is the rapid degradation of values and traditions by the so-called liberal influences of nowadays; you regularly see men kissing other men in public, walking holding hands and shamelessly flaunting what are misleadingly termed their "lifestyle" and "sexual preferences". There could be a few things I could take issue with Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, but his unflinching and unapologetic stance over homosexuals is definitely not among those. Why, only this very month - you'd better believe this - a man, in a homosexual relationship with another man, gave birth to a child! At least the so-called husband in that relationship hit the jackpot, making me wonder what it is these people have against the natural order of things. And by the way, please tell the Human Rights Commission that I totally refuse to withdraw or apologise for my views. I will write no letters to the commission either, explaining my thoughts. Trouble in the Anglican Communion began when the Episcopalian fraternity in America (where else?) decided to ordain a homosexual as bishop of the flock. Here in South Africa we had a senior officer of the church in Cape Town parading his "gay lifestyle" openly. The 10-yearly Lambeth Conference in England - the gathering is the world "synod" of the church - will deliberate the delicate matter of women and homosexual bishops, among other things. Homosexuals and their backers will call me names, printable and not, for stating as I have always done my serious reservations about their "lifestyle and sexual preferences", but quite frankly I don't give a damn: wrong is wrong! I do pray that some day a bunch of politicians with their heads affixed firmly to their necks will muster the balls to rewrite the constitution of this country, to excise those sections which give licence to men "marrying" other men, and ditto women. Otherwise, at this rate, how soon before some idiot demands to "marry" an animal, and argues that this constitu¬tion "allows" it? - by Jon Qwelane.

      JohannV - 2011-05-31 12:06

      Nothing wrong with this!

      Marcell - 2011-05-31 12:09

      @GinSA1. Thanks for the post. JQ is not a friend of mine BUT I would like to contribute to the R100k.

      Muzi - 2011-05-31 12:30

      Thanks @GinSA : its not as bad as I thought. It responds to religious dilemas. I thought we was stiring hatred within SA.

      daboss247365 - 2011-05-31 14:27

      @marcel, I second that

  • leraz/kuyuz - 2011-05-31 11:59

    gay is not cool period

      VELOCITY - 2011-05-31 12:20

      Homophobia is not cool either.

  • Muzi - 2011-05-31 12:01

    Call me names but SMOKER is not ok. Call me names but DRUNKARD is not ok. I think being gay is a lifestyle choice. Its ok for those who choose to do it like smoking and drinking is ok for others and not ok for others. If he wrote about smokers it was not going to be that serious because smokers have learnt to be less sensitive and the public does not beat you up or hate because you smoke. But when you right about gay people you must think twice. We all know that majority of people infected with AIDS (expect for children and rape victims) knew there was a chance of them being infected, but they got down anyway. Try writing something that blames them and you will feel the hit from all corners of society (including Catholics). Its good he got found guilty. But I think we need to accept being gay as lifestyle choice for other people instead of treating it like this big sensitive thing. Maybe them we will start ignoring it like we ignore smokers. Having said that, I know a couple of gay people, I don't like it when they try to justify it by saying they were born that way. No ways. No one is born a strong body builder, they work toward achieving that. If it was pure generic like they claim, we would have gay cows, sheeps, goats and dogs! This is not hate speech!

      EugeneF - 2011-05-31 12:15

      So, werent you born straight?

      Muzi - 2011-05-31 12:26

      I was born a boy, and I became a man "when" I got sexually active. You don't come out your moms woumb and have sex?

      EugeneF - 2011-05-31 12:35

      If it were a choice, don't you think the majority would choose to be straight to be deemed "normal"?

      BrixtonBriefcase - 2011-05-31 12:44

      So Muzi, the definition of a "man" is someone that's sexually active?

      Muzi - 2011-05-31 12:44

      Not doing crime is a "normal" choice, but our prisons are full. Please stop being ashamed of your choice and just live-it-up like Somizi Mhlongo, no one even bothers that he is gay cause he is not feeling guilty or ashamed of it. In fact he dares people to attack his for being and say being gay is just sexual preference and does not make him any weaker!

      Muzi - 2011-05-31 12:49

      @Brixon: not really. That's why i put when in comas. The man in response means straight man. i should have said "straight man". point taken.

      EugeneF - 2011-05-31 14:48

      @ Muzi - you became a man? You really did? Well, real men don't mind what others do with their own lives.

      Dave Robbins - 2011-05-31 18:11

      Muzi, being gay is NOT a lifestyle choice. It is what you are, like being right-handed, going bald at the age of 25, etc. What gay people want is tolerance - "I am different from you, but that doesn't make it wrong". What Jon Qwelane wrote was intolerant; cripes, now I found out that he is the SA Ambassador to Uganda, which was trying to push through a law making homosexuality punishable with the death sentence - talk about peas in a pod! Glad he got slammed with that fine; now let's hope the Justice System starts punishing rapists more heavily as well.

  • Badballie - 2011-05-31 12:01 this is the correct link to the original article

  • shamus oconner - 2011-05-31 12:05

    He must be out of favor with the ruling gang. He get done for that, but JM can say Kill the Boer and thats okay

      jowza - 2011-05-31 12:28

      one thing at a time

  • Jaco - 2011-05-31 12:39

    So many sudden-Qwelane-supporters here are known for their rightwing comments on this forum. If these bigots only know what Qwelane had said about whites before - they suddenly wouldn't want to buy him a Bells anymore. But when the shoe fits...

      jowza - 2011-05-31 13:02

      dont confuse issues

      BrixtonBriefcase - 2011-05-31 13:08

      Ironic, isn't it? In the same way that people who are foaming at the mouth to have the death sentence reinstated (to be executed in public town squares if possible) are usually anti abortion because they believe every human life is god given and sacred. Madness. As you say...when the shoe fits.

      BrixtonBriefcase - 2011-05-31 13:18

      jowza - you do realize the positive implications that this judgement has for all demographics? The importance of precedents being set in court? If Qwelane was allowed this and not punished, then in THEORY it should be okay for Steve Hofmeyr to use the word K*ffer in that last song of his?

  • knalpot - 2011-05-31 13:14

    Qwelane is currently South Africa's ambassador to Uganda, well well well. Why am I not surprised they have a delinquent in that position?

  • Chilliginger - 2011-05-31 13:18

    That was definitely hate speech!

  • Noitol - 2011-05-31 13:25

    I most certainly am as straight as a die in all matters sexual. But looking down the annals of history I see too many men of note (consider Tchaikovsky, Oscar Wilde, Laurence Olivier, Rock Hudson (!) and countless others) to whom civilization owes an immense debt of gratitude for services rendered for me to shout from my rooftop that to be homosexual is to embrace the epitome of everything evil, as Qwelane apparently believes. At the same time, though, I cannot believe that his article (thanks, GinSA1, for giving me the opportunity to read it) is likely to give rise to a wholesale uprising of murder-inciting hatred against the gay community, so the penalty he has to pay for his ill considered fulminations does seem a bit harsh. But consider this: how is it that Satanism is allowed to flourish unmolested under the dictates of a constitution that allows absolute freedom choice in the matter of religion? I dare say more violence and atrocities have been perpetrated through the ages by its adherents than can be laid at the door of people whose sexual preferences differ from my own.

      BrixtonBriefcase - 2011-05-31 13:47

      I agree with a lot of what you're saying. Also remember that at the time of this column being published, notable numbers of lesbians in the townships were being raped on a weekly basis in order to "cure" them from their "disease", often being infected with HIV in the process. A murder had also taken place and the corrective rape/violence issue was a hot topic. It was, and remains, a very explosive and dangerous topic to Qwelane's target audience.

      Noitol - 2011-05-31 14:34

      Thank you for that. It just serves to accentuate yet again the fact that huge parts of our society are sick to the core.

  • KEITH - 2011-05-31 13:48

    What a load of crap but anyway that's another R100,000 for transformation re-distribution.

  • Aileen - 2011-05-31 13:50

    For those that provided a link to the story, thanks. I have never been into name calling. I find it totally unnecessary and it not only hurts the person but yourself. I also have absolutely nothing against homosexuals, blacks, indians, coloureds, chinese, poor people, rich people. Actually I don't have anything against anybody. I believe in "To each his own". I must be very bored because I really scrutinized the article and I did not find any hate speech in the article. He made a statement of his beliefs, something we are all entitled to and I am sure many of us would also like to be able to submit our beliefs to the rest of the world by way of a news paper article. Somebody said ' he concluded the article by hinting that gay relationships were on a par with bestiality.' There was no hint there. It was more like a 'warning'. Today homosexuality is permissable, tomorrow bestiality, next week having sex with kids. I have some homosexual friends and they are very nice people, just like my straight friends. I don't agree with their lifestyle but that is their choice. Jon Qwelane made a choice by stating his point of view and has been punished for it. Should we also be punished for stating our beliefs and points of view. I hope not because how can we learn from one another about each other if we can't say what we feel. That doesn't mean you have to be rude and pass derogatory remarks about someone. If you don't agree with their beliefs, just say so politely and move on.

      mbossenger - 2011-05-31 14:51

      How do you equate homosexuality with bestiality? You seem to be implying that the natural progression goes from straight to gay to bestiality.

      BrixtonBriefcase - 2011-05-31 15:29

      I'm sure you have a lot of black friends as well Aileen - just not at the dinner table. Get real! If you don't accept their lifestyle, and reason that they've one notch on the evolutionary ladder away from screwing animals - they're not your "friends".

      JohnnyWotten - 2011-05-31 15:42

      So you're in agreement with JQ that homosexuality is a gateway to bestiality and pedophilia? It's 2011, frikken hell, I don't know how people can get worked up about two people that love each other. Do you get equally outraged when fat people date? How about a black and white couple? What about a tall guy and a midget? English and Afrikaans? Because all of these couples affect you just as much as a gay couple.

      Aileen - 2011-05-31 16:05

      @mbossenger: Not quite sure how you get to equating homosexuality with bestiality. One has nothing to do with the other. And I wasn't implying anything. @BrixtonBriefcase: As you have never sat at my dinner table how would you know whether my 'black' friends are there or not. I do not have to accept a person's lifestyle to accept the person for who they are. @JohnnyWotten: Neither I or JQ stated that bestiality is a gateway to bestiality and pedophilia. And no, I don't have a problem with fat people dating, or mixed cultures or tall and short or whoever. I believing in accepting people from all walks of life as who they are. That doesn't mean I agree with some of the things they do. As I am sure that they do not agree with some of the things I do. It is a matter of choice - you can like people but you don't have to like what they do.

  • Chris N Greenland - 2011-05-31 14:06

    Now, who is gonna take a bet that the "Bugger" will keep his job and fully maintain his elite status with our "people centered" government, just like Jimmy Manyi and the other bugger in PE?

  • York Hunt - 2011-05-31 14:14

    So "Gay is NOT okay" is hate speech, but "Shoot the Boer" isn't? Huh? If you're not confused, you don't know what is going on...

      EugeneF - 2011-05-31 14:31

      Nobody said Shoot the Boer isn't. It should also be condemned as hate speech

  • PAnzi_ne_ANC - 2011-05-31 15:10

    just another one of the ANC's jokes which are filling cabinet and governmunt positions.. jon Q is a ring-peice of note..

  • Mixael - 2011-05-31 16:05

    Mixael De Kock

  • Cacophony82 - 2011-05-31 16:32

    Such hatred for people who don't fit into others' world view of normal? Why are you so angry South Africa? You don't have to like gay people, or white people, black people, colored people, swingers, right wingers, Christians, Buddhists, Muslims. Hell you don't even have to ever talk to any of these people if you don't want to, so why on earth can't we all just live and let live? Love your neighbor as you Love yourself? Why can't we see that you don't deserve an opinion if you don't have the allow others their opinions.