SUBJECT: The call for opinions concerning EC goal to extend the list of EU crimes to ‘hate speech’ and ‘hate crime’

Dear members of the EC,
I am addressing you, in my capacity as chairman of the Association Society and Values, defending human dignity and freedom, marriage and family since 2007 in Bulgaria. Thanks to the freedom to make public the consequences of the legalization of prostitution, civil partnership, surrogacy, gender and gender identity other than biological, and others we have managed to stop, along with others, a number of harmful to the individual, the family and society policies[1].
Our opinions are based on scientific research, on the consequences of similar policies in other countries, on the Constitution and the domestic and international legislation adopted by our country.
We are deeply concerned about your intention to include “hate speech” and “hate crimes” as “EU crimes”, along with terrorism, organized crime, human trafficking and sexual exploitation of women and children.

The term “hate speech” has no universally agreed definition. It is not used in any of the major international human rights treaties and is not clearly defined by the European Court of Human Rights[2] or another international court.

Many European countries[3] have passed extreme laws on criminal speech, with law enforcement directed against those who do not share the views of those in power on certain issues.

The laws of “hate speech” are based very much on subjectivity and vaguely defined terms, such as ‘insult’, ‘belittle’ and ‘offend’, interpreted inconsistently and arbitrarily imposed. They create wide preconditions for abuse and have a serious impact on freedom of speech and religious freedom. In many cases, even the fact that what is said is obviously true is not a defense.

We are concerned because we see that anyone[4] in the political, academic and media space today who is scientifically discussing the origin, risks and consequences of non-heterosexual behavior or opposes attempts to redefine gender and gender identity, marriage between a man and a woman, is facing the danger of being excluded from the public debate, of being stigmatized, harassed and discriminated against in various ways by various lobbies, and in some cases of saying goodbye to one’s professional position.

The protection of the rights and freedoms of a group of people should not be at the expense of the same rights and freedoms of other groups of people when it comes to fundamental rights, such as freedom of expression and freedom of speech, guaranteed by the Constitution of Bulgaria – Article 39, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – Article 19, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – Article 19, the European Convention on Human Rights – Article 10 and the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights – Article 11.

The introduction of “hate” and “hate speech” crimes will lead to an even greater division of society due to the possibility of unfair and disproportionate treatment of the same crime.

Given the consequences on the individual and society of such policies and as a nation that has survived the repressive regime of communism and totalitarianism, we urge you not to introduce these new types of crimes. 

As you boldly resist the state terror of the past century, will you have the audacity to oppose in the same way the growing restriction on freedom of speech?

There is no way to protect the children and the future of our country without the freedom to uphold the values ​​enshrined in our Constitution, and without the freedom to talk about the facts and consequences, incl. of victims of such, unscientific policies.

We believe that subjective and open to interpretation terms that do not have clear and generally accepted definitions by Member States, such as “hate speech” and “hate crimes”, have no place in the EU’s list of crimes such as terrorism and human trafficking.

Mihaela Djorgova
Association Society and Values
Sofia, Bulgaria
[email protected]

The letter in Bulgarian see at:


[2] According to the European Court of Human Rights, defining hate speech is difficult because it can be “hidden behind statements that may seem rational or normal at first glance” Council of Europe, Hate Speech Factsheet at p.2 (updated November 2008).

[3] In Austria, “insulting or belittling with the intention of violating the human dignity of others” leads to a two-year prison sentence. In Greece, “public insult to God” leads to a sentence of two years in prison, and inciting hatred against the Hungarian state can be punished by three years in prison. (See Section 283 of the Austrian Penal Code, Section 198 of the Greek Penal Code and Article IX (5) of the Hungarian Constitution.)
Hate crimes, including hate speech, are discussed in ch. 3 of the Bulgarian Penal Code. The Law on Protection against Discrimination prohibits all forms of direct and indirect discrimination on the basis of 19 grounds; including “sexual orientation” (art. 4) and such acts are criminalized in Chapter Three of the Penal Code.

[4] Including prominent LGBTI people as the world tennis champion Martina Navratilova, lesbian and LGBTI activist as well as Jean-Mark, a French homosexual mayor

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