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Court rules 'kiss my ass' insulting

The Local · 30 May 2011, 14:57

Published: 30 May 2011 14:57 GMT+02:00

The district court revised an earlier ruling in a case involving a man who uttered the phrase to a policeman at a train station in the western state of Rhineland-Palatinate.

The man responded with the rude remark after the officer asked him not to smoke.

A lower court had originally acquitted the man of insulting the policeman, arguing the phrase was a common colloquial form of speech in the state. But the chamber overturned the ruling and imposed a fine after an appeal by state prosecutors.

German law criminalizes speech considered insulting or hateful. Insulting others with expletives – especially government officials – is a prosecutable offence that can result in fines or even jail time.

The law has occasionally become a source of public debate such as in the case of a North Rhine-Westphalia politician who called the controversial Thilo Sarrazin an “ass,” and was ordered to either pay a fine or go to prison.

Story continues below…

The Local/DAPD/mdm

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

15:35 May 30, 2011 by TheSavageLegend
Kind of surprising, I've heard this phrase on a daily basis in Suedstadt, Nuremberg for the past five years. I was told it's just "die Umgangssprache, oder Alltagssprache" and was more local slang, than anything profane, Kind of like how the word Scheisse makes it on Spongebob sometimes.
15:54 May 30, 2011 by pepsionice
I would say this....in K-town....you can bring just about any stupid case into court and win. So I wouldn't say this is a national trend. I would describe the K-town mentality being similar to Jackson, Mississippi.
16:15 May 30, 2011 by adipk
Ohhhh yeeeaaaaahhhhhh!!!! now i am waiting for ruling over "F" words.

i think such ban on "F" word will destroy the beauty of ....
16:56 May 30, 2011 by Joshontour
Are they going to fine Mozart's estate and officially ban his famous six piece Canon now?
17:08 May 30, 2011 by Angry Ami
That's right folks, better watch your manners in good old DE, flip somebody the bird and get caught, and it'll cost ya 500€
17:51 May 30, 2011 by The-ex-pat
Sticks and stones will break my bones, but names...........will get you a €500 fine löl!
18:02 May 30, 2011 by willowsdad
Good to see the US isn't the only country where government officals waste the public's time and money with trivial matters.
18:48 May 30, 2011 by nemo999
Not Jackson Mississippi, more like Thomasville or Pineywoods Mississippi
19:48 May 30, 2011 by Gabriel Grubb
IT does not translate as "Kiss my ASS " it translate as " Lick my Arse" .An ASS and an Arse are two different things. Example " The ASS got kicked in the Arse!" .It is only dumb americans that confuse the two!
19:59 May 30, 2011 by Joshontour
No one said it translated as "kiss my ass," they said it is the equivalent of "kiss my ass." Only dumb brits don't see the distinction.
23:49 May 30, 2011 by Badsis
Well both of you are all fined 500 Euros for insulting hateful speech to others

I will accept the fine for and on behalf of TT. Tut Tut.
23:55 May 30, 2011 by MfromUSA
I wonder what would have happened if he had said " kiss my scallywaggin' hotdog?" Just wondering!
00:40 May 31, 2011 by UltraDeb
Does this mean I get 500e from each of the dozen or so young Turkish guys who sexually harass me on the street each day with comments including "Schwanz" and the verbotten F-word? (And no, I'm not talking about the English F-word.)
03:34 May 31, 2011 by rosebudnv
My God

There is nothing more important in this world to deal with??? Get a grip guys.
09:27 May 31, 2011 by ame64
Germany really is turning into a big joke. Wasting tax payers money and over sensitive police. SAD SAD SAD

The German Justice system is very "soft", and now the police are getting even softer, crying around when someone tells them to "lick my a..". Instead of taking little insults to court, they should go after the real criminals, but I think they are just to scared to.
10:26 May 31, 2011 by moistvelvet
Saying that to a policemen is pretty stupid. It isn't just using abusive language to government officials or policemen that can land you with a fine. If you say to someone "you are an arsehole" you can still get a fine, but if you re-phrase it as an opinion instead of fact, "I think you are an arsehole" then that is ok.
10:46 May 31, 2011 by jmwyt1
I was insulted by an officer in Arizona, USA and I called him an a**hole, he told me i needed to talk to him with respect, so I said, excuse me, Officer A**hole. I went to jail for 24 hours.
15:35 May 31, 2011 by frankiep
Respect concerning police is always a one-way street. They demand that the lowly maggots who pay their salaries treat them with the utmost respect, but they have no requirement to reciprocate.

In the US this disturbing fact can very easily be seen simply by listening to the language police use. They are no longer police, they are "Law Enforcement Officers (LEOs)" - and the people who pay them to do their jobs are no longer citizens, they are "civilians".
19:27 May 31, 2011 by Jack Kerouac
Um, why hasn't anybody brought up "free speech"? I know that term is abused and exploited, ect. However, it is necessarily hateful in this instance. I am flabbergasted that in modern times one can be fined (or even go to jail!) for a sasy comment to an authority figure. Really guys? Come on, Deutschland.
19:58 May 31, 2011 by belladons
Officer, "Have I told you lately to kiss my arse?"........lol
20:24 May 31, 2011 by Jack Kerouac
*it is NOT necessarily hateful. Sorry - typo.
19:01 June 1, 2011 by Joshontour
Jack, No one has brought up free speech, because there is no right to free speech in Germany. We have "Meinungsfreiheit," which is simply freedom of opinion. We do not, however, have the right insult people or violate their dignity. One must be careful with how they phrase things here. I suppose if his comment had been..."Ich meine, du kannst mich im arsch lecken" he would have been ok.
16:57 June 2, 2011 by Stone Soup
Well, someone needs to point out the historical roots and context of this little incident. Try Goethe's play "Götz von Berlichingen" - and reference the title character's reply to the Bishop of Bamberg's demand for his surrender.

For the lazy: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G%C3%B6tz_von_Berlichingen_%28Goethe%29

The court appears to lack awareness of cultural tradition.
01:04 June 4, 2011 by alex6500
I am sure that in the USA where i live that slang statment to a police officer may get you locked up.Good idea not to say it.
07:51 June 8, 2011 by cdb8
I heard this comment almost weekly from my mother saying it to my father which after a few times loses its harshness and I used to say it to my friends who had no idea what I was saying! I always thought it meant lick my ass so I giggled a lot as a teenager over it!! I am sure my mother never wanted my dad to lick her ass!! hahahaha! Brings back funny memories!! talking dirty in a diff language is always more fun!!
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