Staatsanwalt Dr. Hohl
Dear Dr Hohl:
I am writing on behalf of the National Campaign for Freedom of Expression (NCFE), an organisation dedicated to defend artistic freedom. We are gravely concearned about the Swiss government's prosecution of Seelenlos and Ärger, the [co]creators of the satirical "Blut Geil" video, and urge that all charges be dropped immediately.
We are astonished to hear that the High Court fined the video producers and ordered the master tape to be destroyed. We understand that the court based its ruling on a condemnation of the video's "primitive bad taste" and declared that "Culture must be positive". According to this criterion, much (if not all) of the world's art and literature could be banned from distribution. It represents nothing less than a blanket ban on artistic production that challenges the status quo or engages in political dissent.
Politically-motivated restrictions on artistic content have no place in a democratic society. People should be free to view or not view the video, as they chose, and to form their own opinions about it. The charges against Messrs. Seelenlos and Ärger are clearly based on their opposition to the police and the government, which -- while it might personally offend some -- is a position that they every right both to hold and to express in their videos.
We urge that all charges be
dropped immediately, and that all restrictions on the distribution of the
"Blut Geil" video be removed. Thank you for