I haven't written about Éric Zemmour's conviction for "inciting racial hatred" because the verdict displeased me almost as much as the man himself. Because I believe in free speech, I think that Zemmour should be allowed to say what he pleases, and his opponents should be free to criticize his sallies as they see fit. It's a bad business when the force of law is used to suppress the expression of opinion. But now the UMP has invited Zemmour to one of its forums to speak on "freedom of thought," which lends the imprimatur of the party to his sulfurous personality. Clearly, the UMP knows what it is doing: Zemmour has street cred with people who vote for the extreme right, and the UMP wants to win them back. This is reprehensible.
So is the move by the CGT to have Zemmour removed from the airwaves. I don't care much for the shock-jock programming of the likes of Ardisson and Ruquier, who use provocateurs like Zemmour to boost their ratings. But I care even less for the blacklisting of controversial voices by actors of the right or the left.