In December 2006, the film star-turned-animal rights activist wrote a letter to France’s then interior minister, current President Nicolas Sarkozy, arguing that Muslims should stun animals before slaughtering them during the Aid al-Kabir holiday.
She outraged anti-racist groups by saying: “I’ve had enough of being led by the nose by this whole population which is destroying us, (and) destroying our country by imposing their ways.”
Bardot, now 73 and suffering from arthritis, was absent from Tuesday’s court hearing in Paris. She wrote to the court saying: “I’m sickened by how (these organisations) are harassing me.”
She added: “I will not shut up until stunning is carried out” on animals before their ritual slaughter.
From the WSJ Law Blog:
French anti-racism laws prevent inciting hatred and discrimination on racial or religious or racial grounds. Bardot had been convicted four times previously for inciting racial hatred.
Bardot’s lawyer, Francois-Xavier Kelidjian, said he would talk to her about the possibility of an appeal. “She is tired of this type of proceedings,” he said. “She has the impression that people want to silence her. She will not be silenced in her defense of animal rights.”
French prosecutors are tired, too. This will be the fifth time Bardot has been fined for inciting racial hatred since 1997. Last month, prosecutor Anne de Fontette told the court she was seeking a tougher sentence than usual, adding: “I am a little tired of prosecuting Mrs. Bardot.”
It’s a sad day for France, when one of its citizens can be convicted of inciting hatred and discrimination just for voicing a valid opinion.