In the United States, Spotify is bumping up against our history of free speech by banning artists from their playlists under a nebulous new anti-hate policy.
In Spain, things have gone way beyond that.
Today, Spanish rapper Valtonyc lost his appeal and will serve three and a half years in prison just for his lyrics.
Government prosecutors claimed his bars glorified terrorism and insulted and threatened the Spanish royal family. The Spanish Supreme Court agreed that they ran afoul of a controversial 2015 anti-terrorism law that limits freedom of speech, prohibits mass gatherings and invokes fines for protesting and comments on social media.
“Calling me a terrorist is nonsense,” Valtonyc said. “My songs don’t hurt anyone, I haven’t killed anyone. I rap about things that happen, but I’m not a participant.”
Now that Valtonyc is out of appeals, he will have to report to prison within ten days.
There will be a large concert on his behalf in Spain later this week.