A win for free speech! The Colombian Supreme Court just ruled in favor of popular YouTuber Erika “Kika” Nieto, who came under fire after defending traditional marriage in a video online.
Nieto, who has over 7 million YouTube followers, had been taken to court twice and previously ordered by a lower court to remove a controversial 2018 video for so-called “hate speech,” The Christian Post reported.
Alliance Defending Freedom International said in a statement that Nieto simply answered a follower’s question in the video, defending her belief in traditional marriage between one man and one woman. The Constitutional Court of Colombia ruled that Nieto should not have been ordered to remove the YouTube video.
“By speaking out I hope to inspire more tolerance of different opinions,” Nieto reportedly said, leading up to the court’s pro-free-speech decision. The YouTuber had already won a previous case concerning the same video. Nieto briefly explained her belief in traditional marriage in the video, which the activist who took her to court called “offensive and discriminatory,” according to The Christian Post.
The language Nieto used hardly seems discriminatory. “I really hope that everyone who is watching this video knows that not all people have the same opinion and that’s OK,” Nieto reportedly said in the video. “I think that God made us all and created man and created woman for man to be with woman and woman to be with man and that’s it. Whatever we have done after that as man with man and woman with woman, I think it’s not right.” Nieto added.
“However, I do have friends who are gay, I have friends who are lesbian, I love them with all my heart. And if I know one thing and I am completely sure of it, it is that God is love. And He calls me to love people. Without judging them.” The Colombian Supreme Court overruled a lower court that had deemed Nieto’s commentary to be “hate speech,” according to The Christian Post.
Nieto’s legal supporters presented the ruling as a victory for free speech. “Together with Kika, we are overjoyed that the court has overturned this censorship ruling. Kika stood strong throughout this ordeal to make the case for everyone’s freedom to share their beliefs,” Nueva Democracia counsel Santiago Guevara reportedly commented. Nueva Democracia is a NGO that represented Nieto with the support of conservative law firm Alliance Defending Freedom International (ADF).
Nieto is not the only public figure who has recently faced censorship pushes. Former member of the Parliament of Finland Päivi Räsänen is currently facing criminal investigations for sharing disapproval of the Lutheran Church’s participation in a 2019 LGBTQ+ pride event, The Christian Post reported. YouTube also recently removed a video of a panel on vaccine mandates and injuries hosted by Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI).
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