Man who trained dog to 'Nazi' salute is fined

Nellie Chapman
April 24, 2018

Meechan taught the pug, named Buddha, to respond with the Nazi salute when prompted by statements such as "Heil Hitler" and "Gas the Jews".

"My girlfriend is always ranting and raving about how cute and adorable her wee dog is, so I thought I would turn him into the least cute thing I could think of, which is a Nazi", he said. Meechan has now been fined after being convicted of a hate crime. Meechan has maintained that the video was intended as a joke, and he was simply trying to annoy his girlfriend, who owned the pug.

Speaking to reporters after the sentencing, Meechan said his conviction set a "really unsafe precedent for people to say things, their context to be completely ignored and then they can be convicted for it".

Meechan said the stunt was meant as a joke, but he was convicted last month of posting "grossly offensive" material.

But Sheriff Derek O'Carroll said that while the right to freedom of speech was important, the law necessarily places some limits on that right in all modern democratic countries.

"A joke can be grossly offensive". "Because in 1940s Germany, that would have got you arrested and murdered for taking the piss".

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"If you don't believe in a person's right to say things that you might find "grossly offensive", then you don't believe in Freedom of Speech".

"Speech may be free", said Cooper, "but there are consequences for one's actions".

Comedian Ricky Gervais had taken to Twitter to comment on the case after guilty the verdict.

Speaking earlier in the trial, YouTuber Dankula criticised the length of proceedings, remarking: "It's been two years of my life completely put on hold, I've not been able to get a job, there have been threats against my life... threats off Antifa, far left radicals". "Yet if my government tried to ban it or criminalize it, I would march alongside those poor fools and fight hard for their right to believe any fucking stupid nonsense they chose".

"This case was not about whether the video was a "joke" but about whether it was meant to give offense; Meechan himself made clear both in the video and in court that that was his intention, and far from apologizing or expressing regret, is now presenting himself as a martyr and has been embraced by the extreme right".

"I am so sorry to the Jewish community for any offense I have caused them".

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