Trial Over Muhammad Cartoons Begins in France
The Paris Mosque and the Union of Islamic Organizations of France contend that the newspaper, Charlie Hebdo, and its director, Philippe Val, are guilty of slander, an offense that carries a possible six-month sentence and a fine of up to 22,500 euros, or about $29,000.
The case is causing debate in a country where separation of church and state is considered a fundamental tenet of the national identity.
Slander my ass.
The cartoons were satire. Coarse, perhaps, but they demonstrated what they set out to demonstrate quite effectively: that religion opposes free expression.
The only debate this is causing is coming from people who feel that being intolerant of intolerance is worse than the intolerance itself just because they happen to be the ones doing the intolerating.
And PC-crippled politicians and pundits are siding with them, as this twit demonstrates.
As the crisis over the Danish cartoons depicting the Islamic prophet Muhammad appears to be dying down, it is time to create a system to prevent such a costly crisis from erupting in the future.
The system he has in mind does not, as you might have guessed, involve telling people to lighten the fuck up and recognise that free speech is a fundamental right.
No, he proposes to instate an International Religious Court, composed of a single Christian, Muslim, and Jew (because apparently those are the only religions in the world now, even though Judaism is only the twelfth largest), to police what people say about religion in public.
He’s not alone in this, either. According to this guy, the UN has voted on resolution against “Defamation of Religion” twice now, though it didn’t get sufficient support to pass either time, mostly because the West has this notion of freedom of speech.
Taking into account the negative stereotyping of religions that exist in various regions of the world, the Defamation Resolution proclaims that defamation of religions causes social disharmony and leads to violations of human rights.
Along the same lines, being female leads to rape, so we should outlaw women immediately.
Also look at who voted for and against this thing:
1. Supportive States: [...] All Middle Eastern states except Israel, an overwhelming majority of states from Asia, Africa, and South America voted for the Resolution. Russia and China, the two permanent members of the UN Security Council also voted for the Resolution.
2. Opposition States: [...] The opposition consists of predominantly Western states, including all members of the European Union, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States. Except for Japan and South Korea, no other Asian state opposes the Resolution.
So mostly what we have is theocracies and countries without much in the way of freedom of speech (currently, historically, or both) voting in favor, and civilised places (essentially) voting against. This by itself should tell you something about the contents of the resolution.
I have no problem with anti-discrimination laws, or even with anti-hate-speech laws (unlike some). This is not that kind of resolution.
What these people want is purely for people to be tolerant of their intolerance. This is not what cultural rapprochement means.
The people saying “But these are the traditional customs of these people, and we have to respect that!” are the worst cultural relativism has to offer. Arbitrary suppression of free expression is a human rights violation just as much as human sacrifice (say) would be, and its consequences arguably reach much further. Still, there’s nobody arguing human sacrifice should be legalised if it happens to be a traditional custom.
I’m not even getting into how you would even define a religion. Is the Cult of the Flying Spaghetti Monster a religion that would be protected under this? Is Scientology? Is Wicca? Is Mormonism? And if not, why would Christianity or Islam be?
(Partially via this guy.)