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OPINION

France Trades Free Speech for a Genderless Society

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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When a society’s laws recognizing marriage as the union of one man and one woman are changed to honor the unions of same-sex couples, it’s not just the law that changes—it’s also the society itself that changes. A top-down metamorphosis begins in which every aspect of public law changes to match the new definition of marriage.

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Today, this is playing out in France with great clarity.

There, Minister Najat Vallaud-Belkacem is pressing Twitter to help control the speech of the people by censoring messages that run counter to the position of the French government.

In particular, Belkacem wants Twitter to censor messages that run counter to the government’s decision to grant special rights and an elevated status to people who engage in homosexual behavior and persons who are of one gender but claim to be of another.

Belkacem praises the French government for making it illegal to discriminate based on these and other things and calls on Twitter to share the convictions of the government:

It is the honor of France to have gradually included in the penal code punishment of incitement to hatred or violence against a person or group of persons because of their origin, membership or non-membership in an ethnic group, nation, or of their sexual orientation or gender identity…Twitter [needs] to find solutions so that messages sent from our territory, our language, and destination of our citizens do not bear a clear violation of the principles we have set.

Notice—now that France has added “gender identity” to its national non-discrimination policy, unapproved communiqués on the subject of homosexual behavior are punishable by law. Now that France has embraced and attempted to redefine morality on homosexual behavior, speech against such behavior is literally banned.

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And Minister Belkacem approves of this. She said as much when she wrote that French officials support “freedom of expression” but not freedom of expression “with impunity.”

There are so many lessons here for Americans who think that such things can never happen in this country. Believing the falsehood that all advocates of homosexual behavior want is to be left alone, one need only read their own words and examine the legal landscape, where dissenters and people of faith are being persecuted by “human rights commissions” and other government authorities who have no tolerance for a different point of view from their own.

If marriage in America is legally redefined, albeit never morally redefined, our freedoms will be adjusted (lessened) to match. As we bristle over what is happening in France, have we ever stopped to ask whether the same is not already on our own doorstep—and, in many cases, already over the threshold?

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