The Times of Malta is a cradle of disinformation, twisting facts and reasoning in its political pursuit of liberal causes. Four short months ago, it gave great prominence to Gozitan “puftas” reporting to the police a Facebook comment stating that their parade should be bombed. As a result, the court imposed a €3,000 fine and a six-month suspended sentence on the scribbler. Now it’s Pastor Manché’s turn to report threats against him to the police. He is facing more than one bomb threat. But this time, The Times lashes out against the victim, Pastor Manché, rather than the perpetrators baying for assassination.
To witness Tal-Pepe’s contradiction, compare The Times’ article of four months ago, “Man Fined €3,000 For Saying Gozo Pride March Attendees Should Be Bombed: Hate Speech Cannot Go Unreported and Unchallenged…” to this month’s Times’ “Editorial: Manché, Stop Wasting Everyone’s Time.”
Excerpts from The Times
The reasons The Times editorial gives why the police should ignore his complaints include “Manché loves the limelight.” As if only those that shun the limelight should report threats to the police. Even more weighty is The Times’ comment that “he appears to be on a particularly disturbing crusade to stop homosexuality.” For argument’s sake, assume he is. If so, which law bans those against homosexuality from asking the police for assistance when facing threats of violence? “It does not end there,” the editorial cautions. The plot thickens as the editorial continues, “And then it got darker. In January 2022, the police questioned members of his movement to understand a murder suspect’s links to River of Love.” So, it’s okay for the police to ask his members for help but it’s not okay for him to ask the police for help. Incidentally, what’s the insinuation here? That the callous murder was commissioned by the River of Love?
We couldn’t fact-check the following part, but we could imagine the editor at The Times verbalizing all this to his secretary as s/he transcribed his comments, both of them gasping in an endless string of “Maa” and “Ta’,” so common in the tal-Pepe lexicon. “Maa… you’re scaring me about tar-River ta’.” And on and on the editorial went. What was supposed to be the sanest corner of the newspaper, became mongrel and gibberish.
And finally – stop press, this is weighty – the editor concluded “There must at least be some sort of filter by which basic case law is reviewed before someone [is] charged for… comments.” Oh sure. The filter is clear for all to see. If you’re gay, Minister Owen Bonnici and the police will hound your critics. If on the other hand you’re a Christian, Owen Bonnici will change the law to paralyze the police and strip you of legal protection.
What the editor of The Times is asking for, in the face of repeated bomb threats against the pastor, reflects either deviousness or amnesia. Perhaps, the following will get him to his senses.