expression in Barnevern cases
Speech at the
demonstration outside the Norwegian parliament on 16 April
The speech was held in English,
then in Norwegian as
of speech is
important and positive.
This is an opinion shared by most of us.
It cannot be because it's always nice to hear people's
It isn't nice, because it is so often critical.
So again: Why do we think it is important?
Well, let us hear what the European Court of Human Rights
has to say about freedom of expression ('expression'
comprises both speech and writing):
In a judgment from 1976, the Court says clearly that free
expression is one of -
".... the principles characterising a 'democratic
society'. Freedom of expression constitutes one of the
essential foundations of such a society, one of the basic
conditions for its progress and for the development of
freedom of expression is important because it is
It is necessary for people in a democratic society to speak
clearly about how things are, if they are going to be able
to change them.
It is necessary in order to bring out in the open
everything which is wrong and harmful in our society, so
that it can be put right.
It is necessary in order to stop abuse and tyranny and
exploitation of people. As long as only the abusers, the
tyrants and the exploiters know about it, and their victims
are not given protection if they speak out, it will all
and the Norwegian state, do not like this.
They do their utmost to stop people from speaking and
writing about the way Barnevernet tears apart their family,
and the way they themselves are struggling to be reunited
and left in peace by Barnevernet.
Parents who speak out, are punished by being cut off even
further from their children. Our authorities say that this
is not punishment, and that it is done to protect the
Shall we believe that children are protected by
hearing that their
parents love them and are doing their utmost to get them
But our courts, too, our judges and the lawyers engaged by
the municipalities to go against the families - they
believe this nonsense, and they use it as an argument
the children from
going home, stop their parents from getting them home.
is in a bad way.
rights of each unique person.
The major danger to a single person or a small flock is
always the organisation called the state, because the state
has power over us. This is necessary, because otherwise we
would have anarchy, not democracy, (and anarchy is no
anybody with power has to be watched, and be stopped if
they abuse their power. And this is not possible without
the right to bring it out into the open, by free speech.
prides itself on being a democracy, and
Norwegian politicians and other leaders travel around the
world preaching human rights to others.
When it comes in the form of criticism against
though, the Norwegian state does not like free speech any
more. They try to make it impossible, even criminal, to
show others how Barnevernet acts.
There are many many examples of this, including downright
attempts to forbid people to put out on the internet videos
of their own children and how a dozen Barnevern and police
come into their homes and carry away the screaming,
frightened kids. The mayor of a country district wants a
ban on showing Barnevernet in action, because, she says, it
hinders Barnevernet and the police in their work.
Some social work, which cannot be shown.
Court of Human Rights also makes it
several of its judgments, that not only do we have a right
to speak, people also have a right to receive information.
Normally this strenghtens the right of the press to print
and publish. But since our mainstream media have for
decades not wanted to bring unsavoury truths about
Barnevernet to people, I think people have the right to
receive it from us! We who write on the internet and
demonstrate in the streets, like we do
continue, then! Until we have seen the last of the present,
fictitious protector of children and we get a real one
our authorities do not want us to speak or listen about
hard facts of Barnevernet. They even shun information
When people try to talk turkey about substantial facts,
they say, "We cannot go into individual Barnevern cases."
Can they not?
All this week there has been news about the Panama Papers,
apparently indicating some economic skulduggery, and some
managers of our big banks have said they didn't know
anything about who did what in Luxembourg or the
What happens then? Economic and legal experts turn up on tv
and say: The boss cannot excuse himself for not knowing
what his subordinates are doing. It is his responsibility
So can the politicians and the administration in the
municipalities, and those higher up in government,
have delegated everything to Barnevernet and what they do
is nothing to do with us. We have decided that we cannot
look into it." ?
No, they can not.
chief justice way back, Emil Stang
once said (I think
it was about 60-70 years ago) that unjustifiable laws
cannot be maintained in the long run.
In the Barnevern sector, there is a whole lot of laws and
rules waiting to be toppled! We must get it out the way the
Court of Human Rights says: We must vigorously practice
free speech, a basic condition for the progress of society
and each one of us.