Guest post by Peter Imanuelsen, more commonly known as Peter Sweden
The Swedish government is looking into the possibility of banning rune script and viking symbols such as Thor’s hammer because they risk offending people it is being reported.
Rune script and Norse symbols have a long history dating back over one thousand years and is part of Swedish history and heritage. Across Sweden you can find rune stones from viking times with messages inscribed on them.
But now the government is investigating banning them as “hate against ethnic groups” because neo-Nazi groups such as the Nordic Resistance Movement have been using these norse symbols. In particular the government is looking to ban the letter Tyr which is part of the runic alphabet. This same symbol is used by neo-Nazis as their logo.
However, the neo-Nazis drink water too, according to the same logic water could be used as a hate symbol as well.
In addition, old norse symbols stemming from norse mythology could be banned. Historic symbols such as Mjölner (Thor’s hammer), Valknut and Vegvisir could be banned.
This potential ban could be in serious violation of religious freedom, as these norse symbols are an important part of the pagan religion still practised by some people in Sweden.
People are organizing a protest this Friday in Stockholm between 2pm and 4pm and also delivering a petition for the government to save the old norse cultural heritage.