Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Christian hoteliers cleared of ‘religious hatred’

It has been nine months of trauma as their lives were placed in turmoil and their takings at the Bounty House Hotel in Aintree plummeted by 80 per cent. But after a two-day trial, District Judge Richard Clancy at the Liverpool Magistrates Court has cleared Benjamin and Sharon Vogelenzang of ‘religious hatred’ towards Ericka Tazi.

Mrs Tazi, a convert to Islam from Roman Catholicism, had claimed that the Christian couple had insulted her because of her faith while she was a guest in their hotel after she appeared one evening wearing a hijab (some reports say burkha, but they appear to be inaccurate). She claimed they had insulted Mohammed by calling him a ‘warlord’, and likened him to Saddam Hussein and Hitler. They allegedly asked her repeatedly if she was a murderer or a terrorist.

Mr and Mrs Vogelenzang's barrister Hugh Tomlinson QC challenged her account, suggesting she had worn Islamic dress to provoke the Vogelenzangs and that they merely engaged in a legitimate discussion about their faiths. They denied using threatening, abusive or insulting words which were religiously aggravated. They denied Mrs Tazi’s version of events and claimed she had told them that Jesus was ‘a minor prophet’ and that the Bible was untrue.

No religious hatred there, of course.

Mr and Mrs Vogelenzang said: "We would like to thank all those who have supported us over the last nine months – our family, our friends, our church, and Christians from all around the world and non-Christians. And as Christmas approaches, we wish everybody peace and goodwill."

Including, no doubt, Mrs Tazi, for that is what Christians do, even though she has been found to have lied, slandered and caused financial detriment, even after swearing an oath to Allah and kissing the Qur'an. It is now for her to apologise; it is she who should compensate. Cranmer is all for forgiveness, peace and love, but actions have consequences: slander and lies have penalties, and by turning the other cheek to these sorts of onslaughts against the freedom to talk about Jesus on one's own property risks the liberties of us all.

Cranmer received an email from a friend of the Vogelenzangs in September. It said: ‘I know this couple personally, and can confirm that they are the most unoffensive people you could meet. When the Muslim woman in question realised they were Christians she kept trying to provoke them and start arguments about religion - they were wary of her and kept trying to change the subject - then on the last day she came down in a burkha and started ranting at them!”

Justice has prevailed, and for that one must thank God.

Cranmer wonders what happens now to someone who says Mohammed is a false prophet.

It appears that one may be arrested for ‘religious hatred’, endure months of anguish and hardship, all because someone takes offence.

How much longer will it take our politicians to realise that freedom of speech must be tolerated, and everyone living in the United Kingdom must accept that they may occasionally be insulted about their beliefs, however sincerely held, or indeed be offended, purposely or inadvertently, and that this is something which they must simply endure?


Anonymous Knighthawk said...

The District Judge ruled that the evidence against them was inconclusive and cited the couple's right to freedom of expression under the European Human Rights Act.

9 December 2009 at 16:39  
Blogger The Anti Christ said...

It's not my idea of justice, but there is some consolation knowing that some demented crank wearing the latest desert cloak cannot run riot every time the medication runs out.


We are getting there, slowly, very slowly.

9 December 2009 at 16:47  
Blogger Jules said...

Frankly, it doesn't matter whether they were 'guilty' or not. The accusation itself is enough to ruin ones livelihood and peace of mind. Cases like this will make people think twice before expressing themselves. We now have only one religious group in this country which cannot be blasphemed against - can you guess which?

9 December 2009 at 16:50  
Blogger Dave said...

Something wrong here. Surely this is a thought crime of the worse kind?

Whatever happened to free speech?

9 December 2009 at 16:57  
Anonymous Robert Eve said...

Good to see the right result.

9 December 2009 at 16:59  
Blogger OldSouth said...

'How much longer will it take our politicians to realise that freedom of speech must be tolerated,...'

I would suggest a word change here:

...freedom of speech must be protected...

Glad to hear of this outcome, and thanks for keeping all abreast.

9 December 2009 at 17:14  
Anonymous oiznop said...

The Crown Prosecution Service defended the decision to prosecute saying it was a "serious allegation".

"In looking at the evidence in this case we had to consider whether there was any evidence that the defendants had caused harassment, alarm or distress and in so doing demonstrated to the victim hostility solely based on the fact that she was Muslim," said senior lawyer Nicola Inskip.

"We were satisfied that there was sufficient evidence for a realistic prospect of conviction that a religiously aggravated offence should be charged."

9 December 2009 at 17:25  
Blogger Chrysippus said...

I seem to remember that the complainant was on a course paid for by the local Health Authority and that the downturn in business has been caused by the lack of such guests. Let us hope that the 'authorities' are now happy to use the Hotel for attendees on their courses. (Thinks - dream on).

9 December 2009 at 18:02  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

mohammed is a false prophet.

9 December 2009 at 18:05  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No he's not.

9 December 2009 at 18:33  
Blogger Chrysippus said...

Oh yes he is!

(He's BEHIND you!!!!!)

9 December 2009 at 18:42  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He's not the Prophet, he's just a naughty, naughty paedophile!

This was evidently a politically motivated attempted lynching. The head of the CPS should resign.

9 December 2009 at 18:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He's not. The Prophet Muhammed is the final seal, prophesied by Isa (Jesus) in the Injil (gospel). It is not good for you to call him 'false' because Isa said he would come to fulfill all that was required.

9 December 2009 at 18:46  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We are faced with a global campaign by Islamic countries (the O.I.C.) to stop freedom of speech:

"Islamic countries push a global 'blasphemy' law"

9 December 2009 at 20:00  
Anonymous Mark Blades said...

Sir, I would like to thank you for your forthright comments regarding this case. The blatant prejudice of this government in its support of Islam and its treatment of Christians, through a form of State sponsored terrorism, is an absolute disgrace. It's not only this particular couple who've been affected, but the Christian registrar, policeman, charity worker, and others who lost their jobs through government persecution. And let's not forget the pensioner who complained about the 'Gay Pride' event and got a visit from this politicized Police 'Service'. I don't think it's over, either, not as long as we remain in the People's Republic of the EU and it has the power to issue its 'directives'.

9 December 2009 at 20:10  
Blogger dutchlionfrans1953 said...

The case should have been dismissed from the start! I have proposed legislation that people like this muslim-convert, or homosexuals, or anyone who accuses someone from libel or slander or insult of offense, should first prove to the magistrates/ police how the person they accuse is guilty of intentionally doing what they accuse him/her of, and if they can not prove this, should be prosecuted themselves for abuse of the court for settling personal ssues.! This is easy enough to make into law, and it will stop 99% of these frivolous cases that bring unnecessary suffering and loss for the accused people. No matter the outcome, like here: The pain remains for many many years! And they may never be the same. SHAME oh such SHAME to those who are guilty of this devil's game: The legal and judicial authorities.

9 December 2009 at 20:11  
Anonymous len said...

Anonymous said...

He's not. The Prophet Muhammed is the final seal, prophesied by Isa (Jesus) in the Injil (gospel). It is not good for you to call him 'false' because Isa said he would come to fulfill all that was required.(End of quote)

Jesus says:

‘If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.’ (John 14: 15-18)

From these verses we can see that the one Jesus promises will come is a person because he calls him ‘another Helper’. This person however, is not human:

‘…to be with you forever,’ (man does not live forever on earth)

‘…Spirit of truth’ ('Spirit' is not usually used for a man)

‘…whom the world cannot receive’ (how can this refer to a man?)

‘…because it neither sees him nor knows him’ (a human being is visible)

‘…for he dwells with you and will be in you’ (no man can dwell inside another, so this cannot refer to a man)

9 December 2009 at 20:15  
Blogger Terry Hamblin said...

Perhaps we will now see the Muslim woman prosecuted for wasting police time. Perhaps a civil case against her for defamation that caused considerable material loss.

9 December 2009 at 20:19  
Anonymous Martin Sewell said...

The next administration could usefully address a simple question. What changes need to be made legislatively, structurally and attitudinally to ensure this kind of nonsense never occurs again?

9 December 2009 at 21:31  
Anonymous Bag Lady said...

Re: post on the debt. We could have a hijab & burkha tax. That would rake in a few billion........

9 December 2009 at 21:47  
Blogger Tarquin said...

The issue here is the police and the CPS, not the law itself as the case didn't stand a chance in court - why did they feel they could arrest and try these people - it's scary, this should set a precedent for the police

9 December 2009 at 21:53  
Anonymous Knighthawk said...

The defence QC made these points that are worthy of note:

It could not be objectionable under the laws of England for a person to believe that women in Islam are oppressed.
Even if it was said that Muhammad was a warlord, this also could not be deemed offensive.
Freedom to be inoffensive was not a freedom worth having.
The fact that someone is upset or offended is not a reason for criminalising the speech used by the other person.

The last of these points clearly shows there was no valid reason for the Police to bring charges or for the CPS to approve prosecution. One can only speculate as to their motives. This case has been a complete waste of public money.

The Vogelenzang's said “As Christmas approaches we wish everybody peace and goodwill." But the response from the other side so far has not been conciliatory:

"Mr and Mrs Vogelenzang acted out of hatred, which is a reflection of the anti-Muslim sentiment in popular discourse," said IHRC chairman Massoud Shadjareh. "This acquittal indicates that such hatred has become acceptable. The verdict sets a bad precedent as Muslims will further lose faith in the system."

No room at the Inn for the Prince of Peace and no peace for his followers in Englastan.

9 December 2009 at 22:04  
Blogger Gnostic said...

So, not everyone in the judiciary is a complete, politically correct muppet. Hooray for common sense...

9 December 2009 at 22:56  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Martin Sewell asked...
The next administration could usefully address a simple question. What changes need to be made legislatively,
- abolition of 'hate speech' legislation/censorship
- withdrawal from the EU
and attitudinally
- conversion of the heathens who run England
to ensure this kind of nonsense never occurs again?

9 December 2009 at 23:00  
Blogger Ayrdale said...

Here's the old story, but with an antipodean leaning. A scurrilous "nativity play" and the question asked to the noble "pushing the boundaries" playwright...would you treat Islam with the same disrespect ?

9 December 2009 at 23:19  
Blogger Kenpachi said...

Your Grace,

"It is now for her (Mrs. Tazi) to apologise; it is she who should compensate."

The Muslim will never apologise.

Mrs. Tazi is no doubt aware that Islam bestows upon her a special place in the eyes of Allah, for which no filthy Kuffar can ever hope to occupy.

The Islamic mindset permits Muslims to behave in such openly hypocritical, disingenious and downright perverse ways when dealing with us non-believers.

From their perspective there is nothing untoward about this. As far as they are concerned the truth of Islam is self-evident. Those who have the audacity to deny it deserve to be treated with contempt and disdain at every turn.

There will be no apology. Ever.

10 December 2009 at 00:58  
Anonymous Voyager said...

The CPS is a central agency not a local District Attorney. It is under directives from the People's Commissars to pursue select cases. It is political.

Tazi seems to have set out to be provocative by wearing garb on her last day at the hotel. I wonder if she was as aggressive a Catholic or if the garb made her feel she had carte-blanche to be offensive.

The courts have a huge backlog as 9 months shows. The judge should have awarded damages but if none are claimed it is hard. Pity the Vogelzangs could not couple a suit for Defamation against the CPS case.

The simple fact is that using Criminal Law in this way is absurd and shows how far the Marxists think controlling legislative machinery gives them unlimited powers

10 December 2009 at 06:59  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Voyager is correct: this was politcally inspired State harrassment.
Mrs Tazi is an unhinged unpleasant old woman. She needs help.
That Muhammad was a warlord - leading armed bands to raid caravans and oases - is well known to anyone with th slightest acquaintance with history.
Is telling the truth now a criminal offense in Britain?

10 December 2009 at 07:17  
Anonymous Knighthawk said...

When a trivial argument about religion attracts this level of investigation is it any wonder that people are worried about 'thought crime' and the undermining of free speech by a politicised police service:

One (highly paid) senior Crown prosecutor. Two policemen - including a detective chief inspector, no less - in court to testify against the accused. Behind them a team of six officers - yes, six - from the Merseyside force's specialist hate crime unit, assigned to investigate Ben and Sharon Vogelenzang.

The CPS has already indicated that it will probably pursue similar cases in future:

Sharon King, a spokesman for the Crown Prosecution said: 'I think we would pursue a case like this again if a similar incident was to arise in the future. It is in the public interest that incidents like this are properly investigated. We felt there was sufficient evidence in this instance to support a prosecution.'

Policital Correctness is evolving into state harrasment.

Read more:

10 December 2009 at 07:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

islam: lies + darkness + hate + murder + war = world domination

Christianity: truth + light + love + life + peace = extinction

10 December 2009 at 08:06  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Your Grace,

The only faith that needs to be protected is Judaeo-Christianity.

Why should people be permitted to mock and insult the truth?

10 December 2009 at 08:43  
Blogger I am Stan said...

Yo your gracieness,

I can not believe that all this court time and taxpayers money has been wasted because a group of supposed adults were rude to each other and had a religious tiff...childish my gods better than your god nonsense...they should have had their heads knocked together and told to bog off and grow up.

So much for love,peace and turning the other cheek etc.

10 December 2009 at 09:28  
Blogger dutchlionfrans1953 said...

Correction: There is no such thing as Judeo-Christian! For anti-christ has no connection with Christ.

Read: 1 John 2:22,23 which clearly marks Judaïsm as antichrist as well as Islam!

This is a popular term now but it is a marriage of fire and water: Impossible.

And absolute absurdity.

I know Cranmer has removed this kind of comment by me before. But his removal of my voice when it says things he disagrees with, is an exercise of his power here, but it will not change the truth of it.

And one day also Cranmer will have to answer God why he opposed the Word of God: 1 John 2:22,23.

10 December 2009 at 12:19  
Blogger dutchlionfrans1953 said...

The judicial PARASITES of the land love (an increased amount of) cases like these: They put money in their pockets. They do not care about justice, they only care about their own pockets, and more cases created by more stupid legislation and stupidities feed a growing bunch of the worst parasites in the land: Lawyers, judges and such!

Away with you all! In Jesus' Name! Away with you!

10 December 2009 at 12:26  
Blogger D. Singh said...


Need I remind you that the New Testament is a tissue of quotations from the Old?

How odd of those who love the God of the Jews to hate the Jew.

As for Anti-Christ - he will arise from Islam. Mo received his Biblical accounts from hi Christia wife. A-C will come but not from the people you think he will come from.

10 December 2009 at 12:29  
Blogger dutchlionfrans1953 said...

D. Singh: Read John 8: 44, moreover: read John 8:32-59

Jesus Christ told the Jews who rejected him that they were of their father, the devil.

You would want to rebuke Jesus Christ and prosecute him for hate-speach? (a Jewish invented new 'crime' that only serves to silence them that are hated by these Jews: Jesus Christ and His followers!)

10 December 2009 at 12:34  
Blogger D. Singh said...


The early followers of Jesus were Jews!

The followers were only called Christians in 70 AD in a Syrian city called Antioch.

Oh please do read your history.

10 December 2009 at 12:39  
Blogger dutchlionfrans1953 said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

10 December 2009 at 12:45  
Blogger D. Singh said...


Not every Jew dislikes Christians.

There is one thing I do know about those people who love Jesus; it this: the Jewish people occupy a special place in their hearts. nad so does Israel.

I long to go and visit Israel.

10 December 2009 at 12:49  
Blogger dutchlionfrans1953 said...

The early followers of Christ were Jews who believed in Jesus Christ! But the Jews who did not believe in Him, and tried to murder Him numerous times (including in the passage I just told you to read, John 8:32-59- , were named children of the devil by Jesus Christ Himself

And these kind of Jews are still around and are our very worst enemies and the very worst enemies of mankind! Jesus Christ warned us of them in John 15 & John 16!

But many evangelical Christians have been manipulated and mislead by false doctrines nowadays!

10 December 2009 at 12:50  
Blogger D. Singh said...


'But the Jews who did not believe in Him, and tried to murder Him numerous times...were named children of the devil by Jesus Christ Himself'

But those very criteria condemn us too. There are times when we have not beleived Jesus. And there are times when we have murdered Jesus in our hearts.

Ye we too have crucified Him all over again.

10 December 2009 at 12:56  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Here's to you pussycat!

THE MADMAN----Have you not heard of that madman who lit a lantern in the bright morning hours, ran to the market place, and cried incessantly: "I seek God! I seek God!"---As many of those who did not believe in God were standing around just then, he provoked much laughter. Has he got lost? asked one. Did he lose his way like a child? asked another. Or is he hiding? Is he afraid of us? Has he gone on a voyage? emigrated?---Thus they yelled and laughed

The madman jumped into their midst and pierced them with his eyes. "Whither is God?" he cried; "I will tell you. We have killed him---you and I. All of us are his murderers. But how did we do this? How could we drink up the sea? Who gave us the sponge to wipe away the entire horizon? What were we doing when we unchained this earth from its sun? Whither is it moving now? Whither are we moving? Away from all suns? Are we not plunging continually? Backward, sideward, forward, in all directions? Is there still any up or down? Are we not straying, as through an infinite nothing? Do we not feel the breath of empty space? Has it not become colder? Is not night continually closing in on us? Do we not need to light lanterns in the morning? Do we hear nothing as yet of the noise of the gravediggers who are burying God? Do we smell nothing as yet of the divine decomposition? Gods, too, decompose. God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him.

"How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it? There has never been a greater deed; and whoever is born after us---for the sake of this deed he will belong to a higher history than all history hitherto."

Here the madman fell silent and looked again at his listeners; and they, too, were silent and stared at him in astonishment. At last he threw his lantern on the ground, and it broke into pieces and went out. "I have come too early," he said then; "my time is not yet. This tremendous event is still on its way, still wandering; it has not yet reached the ears of men. Lightning and thunder require time; the light of the stars requires time; deeds, though done, still require time to be seen and heard. This deed is still more distant from them than most distant stars---and yet they have done it themselves.

It has been related further that on the same day the madman forced his way into several churches and there struck up his requiem aeternam deo. Led out and called to account, he is said always to have replied nothing but: "What after all are these churches now if they are not the tombs and sepulchers of God?"

Source: Friedrich Nietzsche, The Gay Science (1882, 1887) para. 125; Walter Kaufmann ed. (New York: Vintage, 1974), pp.181-82.]

10 December 2009 at 13:22  
Anonymous Pat Butchery said...

I can't believe I'm writing this, but the debate between D.Singh and dutchlionfrans1953 , I am hoping D.Singh wins.

I need a lie down!

10 December 2009 at 13:29  
Anonymous TheGlovner said...

It isn't a debate when one party always sticks their fingers in their ears and sings at the top of their voice.

D.Singh will win it in the same way he wins all "debates", By declaring he has won, regardless of the outcome.

But then again I do agree that not all jewish people hate christians.

10 December 2009 at 13:57  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

His Grace is all for reasoned debate, provided it is on-topic and does not gratuitously hyper-link to offensive or irrelevant material.

Mr Dutchlionfrans, as His Grace has said before, you are welcome to this site and to comment upon matters with reasonable argument. But His Grace is sick and tired of your hyper-linking to crass 'Talmud = evil' youtube lectures. If you wish to reason in words, please do so. If not, please play elsewhere. And His Grace assures you that he has no fear at all in accounting for his words and actions before the Throne of Judgement.

10 December 2009 at 14:01  
Anonymous jeremy hyatt said...

All I want to add is that not being offended is not, and never has been, a human right.

Deal with it - erm - everyone.

wv: psychoto - hmmmmmm

10 December 2009 at 15:25  
Blogger I am Stan said...

Dutchlions and D Singh..thank you that was absolutely hilarious and i am still laughing,although I dont know what the hell you are talking about ,every time I read it again I fall about laughing , bless you both..Singhy! Singhy!

10 December 2009 at 16:38  
Anonymous len said...

I think we are being conditioned, brainwashed, into a bland, no absolutes way of thinking, which is the essence of Political Correctness.

Does god hate ?

If you love your spouse, you hate anything that would defile or injure him or her. If you love your children, you hate anything that would harm them. If you love good, you hate evil. If you love unity, you hate discord. If you love God, you hate Satan. That's why Scripture says, "Hate evil, you who love the Lord" (Ps. 97:10) and, "The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; pride and arrogance and the evil way, and the perverted mouth, I [God personified] hate" (Prov. 8:13).

Do you hate the things that oppose God? Are you offended by what offends Him? Remember, holy hatred is as much a part of godly love as any of its other characteristics. If you love God, you must necessarily hate evil.

10 December 2009 at 19:02  
Blogger dutchlionfrans1953 said...

@Cranmer: Would you rather I simply copy the link instead of hyperlinking it? Here:

I was accused of hating the Jews by Singh after I responded to his contributionn here that contained this impossible word 'judeo-christian.'

Should I not respond to that because it is off-topic but came up in the discussion? Then this means there is a limited freedom of open debate/ discussion here, does it not?

I simply mentioned that it is not I that hate the Jews but the Jews hate Christians. And I gave the evidence of it, in their writings the Talmud to prove that I am not making it up. I think that is professional and correct.

But it seems that anything I remark about the Jews which throws a bad light on them - no matter how true - is forbidden, censored and removed here.

I thought the censorship by bishops and cardinals and the pope was a thing of the past?

10 December 2009 at 19:17  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

Mr Dutchlionfrans,

Clearly everything you say about Jews is not deleted: His Grace has left an awful lot of your irrational prejudice above.

Perhaps you ought to learn what my be unintelligent, crass and intemperate about: "I simply mentioned that it is not I that hate the Jews but the Jews hate Christians. And I gave the evidence of it, in their writings the Talmud to prove that I am not making it up."

If you are not sufficiently discerning, perhaps one of His Grace's communicants with rather more patience might try to enlighten him.

10 December 2009 at 19:18  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The followers were only called Christians in 70 AD in a Syrian city called Antioch."

D. Singh is a clued up writer, but the title 'Christianos' was around earlier than AD 70, since the Acts of the Apostles recounts events prior to then. Greek-speaking Antioch was indeed where the term arose. 'Christianos' was also used by Festus (Acts 26.28) and the Apostle Peter (1 Peter 4:16) before the fall of Jerusalem.

10 December 2009 at 19:25  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Mr Dutchlion,

By the way. Every time YOU use the name 'Singh'; it means 'Lion-heart'.

10 December 2009 at 20:16  

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