Published on Aug 23, 2019
Who does it fall upon to speak out against threats like sharia law? In many places politicians, the media establishment and educational institutions have failed to protect their societies.
In Austria, this responsibility has been shouldered by Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff. Her father was a diplomat and she herself worked for years in foreign embassies. She got an intimate understanding of Islamic doctrines while living and working in Kuwait and Libya.
When she returned to Vienna, she decided to begin educating her fellow Austrians about the true nature of Islam and Sharia law. Elisabeth had been giving seminars for a few years when, in 2010, she ran into legal trouble. She was charged with "inciting hatred." Then, at the discretion of the judge, a second charge was added: "denigration of religious beliefs of a legally recognized religion."
She had to face an expensive legal battle. The case came to court in 2011. The first charge (inciting hatred) was dropped but not the second (denigration of religious beliefs of a legally recognized religion). Elisabeth had a choice between prison and a fine. She chose the latter.
If she had to do it over, she would once again choose to speak out. And she still speaks out, both as a speaker and as a civil liberties representative for Bürgerbewegung Pax Europa at meetings of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in Warsaw and Vienna. As a speaker, she's been invited to Germany, the Netherlands, France, Britain, Denmark, Canada, and the United States.
She's also a mother committed to staying home with her daughter, rather than trying to juggle career and motherhood. Read more on Elisabeth: https://friendsoffreespeech.org/who-is-elisabeth%3F
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