Transcript: 'This is punishment for dissent' — C.J. Hopkins: tried for satire in Germany
I spoke with Berlin-based satirist and author, C.J. Hopkins, about his fight for free speech and his prosecution in Germany
C.J. Hopkins is a Berlin-based playwright, novelist, and satirist. After publishing his most-recent essay collection, The Rise of the New Normal Reich: Consent Factory Essays, Vol. III, and posting a tweet quoting German health minister Karl Lauterbach alongside the book cover, C.J. was accused by German authorities of “disseminating propaganda, the contents of which are intended to further the aims of a former National Socialist organization.”
Specifically, Lauterbach is quoted saying, “The masks always send out a signal," which C.J. agreed with, though of course not in the way the health minister intended it.
The author was found guilty and offered a sentence of either 60 days in prison or a 3600 Euro fine by the Tiergarten District Court.
I spoke with him about the trial, his thoughts on the Gaza/Israel conflict, the fight against online censorship, what the new totalitarianism looks like, and how he plans to fight back.
What follows is a lightly edited transcript of our conversation.