This sort of thing leaves me near despondency. From the BBC,
Freedom Party MP Geert Wilders had been invited to show his controversial film - which links the Islamic holy book to terrorism - in the UK's House of Lords.
But Mr Wilders, who faces trial in his own country for inciting hatred, has been denied entry by the Home Office.
He told the BBC it was a "very sad day" for UK democracy.
The Dutch ambassador was also at Heathrow to make clear his government's opposition to the ban on Mr Wilders entering the UK....
Mr Wilders' film Fitna caused outrage across the Muslim world when it was posted on the internet last year.
After being questioned at Heathrow, the MP said he had been to the House of Lords two weeks ago and there had been "no problem".
He added: "I'm not doing anything wrong. I'm not protesting or running through the streets of London."
Mr Wilders added: "Democracy means differences and debate. It's a very sad day when the UK bans an elected parliamentarian... Of course I will come back."
He said the government's actions had proved that Gordon Brown was the "biggest coward in Europe".
When I see photos of the signs that some Muslims hold up during their demonstrations, I cannot help but react the same way Wilders has. I've seen Fitna. It does NOT incite violence, and it does not incite hatred. It might incite fear, but that is debatable. And debate about the content of the film is what is called for.
The Brits are behaving in a cowardly fashion. They should throw out the current gubmnt and elect people who will support freedom of speech in this context. Where are the quotes from the Tories who are or should be outraged? Where are the Brits in general? They should all be outraged!
The background to this case is even more outrageous (see here for details): Wilders was invited to present his film, but the invitation was rescinded when a/the Muslim member of the House of Lords objected. The others became concerned about rioting in the streets, etc. In other words, they caved in. They knuckled under to bullying and violence. You'd think they had forgotten the lessons from Neville Chamberlain. As Melanie Phillips wrote,
So let’s get this straight. The British government allows people to march through British streets screaming support for Hamas, it allows Hizb ut Tahrir to recruit on campus for the jihad against Britain and the west, it takes no action against a Muslim peer who threatens mass intimidation of Parliament, but it bans from the country a member of parliament of a European democracy who wishes to address the British Parliament on the threat to life and liberty in the west from religious fascism.
I hope Denis McShane spoke out against this tragedy. But most of all, I hope the Brits come to their senses and re-invite Wilders.
Failing that, I hope Stephen Harper invites him to Canada.