Censorship in Spain

As Jose Guardia makes clear, political satire (like the picture of Bush and Blair in the last post) above could be censored in Spain -- at least, if it involved the Spanish royal family.

According to the court, slandering the royals is a crime:

A spokeswoman for the National Court, who could not be identified because of court rules, said slandering the head of state could carry a two year prison sentence.
I somehow doubt they'd censor such a depiction of Bush, though.

Americans take the robust free speech we enjoy here for granted. So much so, that we tend to assume that our European allies must have the same First Amendment that we do. It's a major error, and it must always be remembered that there are plenty of people who'd love to take it away from Americans.

Fortunately, for now they're stuck with the First Amendment, so they're using various workaround methods.

UPDATE (07/24/07): Jose Guardia has a new post and says that "El Jueves has published a retraction in the issue to hit the newsstands tomorrow."

They've cleaned up the cartoon, which is now work-friendly and even kid-friendly!

No word on the implications for the "bee shortage" (although that might be only an American problem).

posted by Eric on 07.20.07 at 04:51 PM


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