Free Brigitte Bardot!

Our younger readers can hardly imagine what a sensation Brigitte Bardot was in the early 1960s. It is said that she was the first foreign-language actress to become a major star in America. Her breakthrough movie was And God Created Woman, directed by Roger Vadim, whom she married–as Jane Fonda did, years later, when she was directed by Vadim in Barbarella. By the early 1970s Bardot, who had, I believe, some inherited wealth, had retired from films. This is a pretty good image of Bardot in her prime:

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In 1963, she collaborated with Jean-Luc Godard on Contempt, one of Godard’s best-known films. This poster for the movie shows Bardot in a slightly scary light:

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Bardot retired early from films and for the last thirty years or so, has been more or less reclusive. She has devoted her energies and fortune mostly to animal rights. The Bardot Foundation’s web site is here. Animal rights is not exactly our cause, but there is nothing wrong with it if not taken to an extreme. In recent years, BB has run afoul of liberal opinion, and, worse yet, the law, because she has been willing to speak out against the increasing Muslim domination of France, and against Muslim practices that she believes are inhumane, like the ritual slaughtering of sheep. As a result of her outspokenness, she has been criminally prosecuted and convicted, four times, for “inciting racial hatred.”

Currently, Miss Bardot is on trial in Paris for “fanning discrimination and racial hatred against Muslims.” It’s a little hard to tell from news accounts exactly what she did to merit another criminal prosecution. The “offensive” quote most commonly cited is, “I am fed up with being under the thumb of this population which is destroying us, destroying our country and imposing its acts.” Which may or may not be controversial, in the present French context, but certainly is not criminal by any rational evaluation.

Bardot was absent from yesterday’s court proceedings, but wrote to the court saying, “I’m sickened by how these organisations are harassing me.” Sounds like CAIR is on her case.

I’m not sure just what one can do to lend support to Bardot. You can go here to send encouraging emails to her foundation. The judge hearing her case, which no doubt is heading for conviction number five, is not so easily reached.

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