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 UN adopts binding measure to ban blasphemy!
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 02/26/2009 :  21:11:31  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The Islamic nations, all of them actually, have been pushing for this for years. Hat tip to PZ Myers for info on the final resolution's passage.

Here's a CNN a video about it which features Lou Dobbs and Christopher Hitchens. (Unfortunately, Dobbs exploits this real issue by bringing up the UN's stand on global warming in a cynical manner.)

In the guise of an anti-discrimination measure, religions themselves are now being "protected" from the dangers of free speech.
But while the draft's sponsors say it and earlier similar measures are aimed at preventing violence against worshippers regardless of religion, religious tolerance advocates warn the resolutions are being accumulated for a more sinister goal.

“It provides international cover for domestic anti-blasphemy laws, and there are a number of people who are in prison today because they have been accused of committing blasphemy,” said Bennett Graham, international program director with the Becket Fund, a think tank aimed at promoting religious liberty.
This is utterly, totally evil. Religious discrimination, especially against atheists, now has official international sanction. Already many Islamic countries have sharia law and the death penalty for blasphemy, atheism and apostasy. How long will it be until some shit-hole Christian nation digs out its Inquisition-era religious laws?

The UN has just put a huge rubber stamp upon the most dangerous and primitive aspects of Bronze Age theocracy.

This is the real McCoy. This issue has to become the primary cause of atheists, agnostics, and fair-minded secularists everywhere.

As someone brilliantly inserted into the above-linked video: Fuck Islam and their bitch ass Prophet! And shove the UN up there, too.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.

Edited by - HalfMooner on 02/26/2009 22:11:33

Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  01:24:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
A binding resolution can't pass if one of the nations who hold veto power steps on it, and I can't imagine the US not stepping on this one.

I'm more than a little irritated by the idea of my tax money being spent to give religiously insane people an international platform to advocate the criminalization of free speech though. That is quite fucked up.

I also have to go with Hitch on this one, all members of the UN should have been required to abide by universal human rights. Shouldn't have let anyone in who didn't agree. Should kick the ones who disagree now out, fuck them anyway.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  03:14:34   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Johann Hari wrote an excellent op-ed on this awhile back. It's worth everyone's time to read.
Here is a random smattering of events that have taken place in the past week in countries that demanded this change. In Nigeria, divorced women are routinely thrown out of their homes and left destitute, unable to see their children, so a large group of them wanted to stage a protest – but the Shariah police declared it was "un-Islamic" and the marchers would be beaten and whipped. In Saudi Arabia, the country's most senior government-approved cleric said it was perfectly acceptable for old men to marry 10-year-old girls, and those who disagree should be silenced. In Egypt, a 27-year-old Muslim blogger Abdel Rahman was seized, jailed and tortured for arguing for a reformed Islam that does not enforce shariah.

To the people who demand respect for Muslim culture, I ask: which Muslim culture? Those women's, those children's, this blogger's – or their oppressors'?

As the secular campaigner Austin Darcy puts it: "The ultimate aim of this effort is not to protect the feelings of Muslims, but to protect illiberal Islamic states from charges of human rights abuse, and to silence the voices of internal dissidents calling for more secular government and freedom."


The response was disappointingly predictable.
An Indian newspaper called The Statesman — one of the oldest and most venerable dailies in the country — thought this accorded with the rich Indian tradition of secularism, and reprinted the article. That night, four thousand Islamic fundamentalists began to riot outside their offices, calling for me, the editor, and the publisher to be arrested — or worse. They brought Central Calcutta to a standstill. A typical supporter of the riots, Abdus Subhan, said he was “prepared to lay down his life, if necessary, to protect the honour of the Prophet” and I should be sent “to hell if he chooses not to respect any religion or religious symbol… He has no liberty to vilify or blaspheme any religion or its icons on grounds of freedom of speech.”

Then, two days ago, the editor and publisher were indeed arrested. They have been charged — in the world's largest democracy, with a constitution supposedly guaranteeing a right to free speech — with “deliberately acting with malicious intent to outrage religious feelings”. I am told I too will be arrested if I go to Calcutta.

What should an honest defender of free speech say in this position? Every word I wrote was true. I believe the right to openly discuss religion, and follow the facts wherever they lead us, is one of the most precious on earth — especially in a democracy of a billion people rivven with streaks of fanaticism from a minority of Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs. So I cannot and will not apologize.

"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  03:45:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Why is it that these great and mighty gods and the religions they've spawned need to be "protected?" Protected from what? What exactly could be a threat to an omnipotent spirit that no one can find, let alone see and clobber. That makes no sense to me. I rather think that it is the paranoia of those gods' more rabid followers. There are no gods and their ceremonies and material outlays in support of nothing make them look like idiots, and they aren't having any of that.

Allah and its Christian triple-decker counterpart are no more than ancient excuses for one set of people to dominate others, as anyone who reads history can easily figure out.

I think that blasphemous and heretical speech and acts should be protected, not myths and outright lies.




"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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moakley
SFN Regular

USA
1886 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  05:59:54   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send moakley a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Couldn't agree more.

Originally posted by filthy

Why is it that these great and mighty gods and the religions they've spawned need to be "protected?" Protected from what? What exactly could be a threat to an omnipotent spirit that no one can find, let alone see and clobber.
It's power and control.

I often image the real danger to be, "I don't believe an omnipotent spirit exist." Repeated and repeated and repeated ...

poof, poof, poof, poof, poof ...

Minds and eyes open to reason completely unencumbered by any superstitious infections. Just like when Vicki died in IRobot. "How can I be of assistance." Coming to terms with reality and trying to make the best of it. But this is clearly delusional thinking on my part.

Life is good

Philosophy is questions that may never be answered. Religion is answers that may never be questioned. -Anonymous
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Hittman
Skeptic Friend

134 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  10:10:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Hittman's Homepage Send Hittman a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm sure the US will stomp on this, but even if they don't it wouldn't matter to us – we routinely ignore UN nonsense anyway.

Still, it's frightening that this is going on. Europe is already arresting people for speaking the truth about Islam. And there are ways to silence people in the states too, even without criminal law – civil lawsuits can easily bankrupt someone, even if they win, and the threat of them could have a chilling effect on free speech. I wouldn't be surprised to see CAIR and other groups going that route in the US.


When a vampire Jehovah's Witness knocks on your door, don't invite him in. Blood Witness: http://bloodwitness.com

Get Smartenized® with the Quick Hitts blog: http://www.davehitt.com/blog2/index.phpBlog
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dglas
Skeptic Friend

Canada
397 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  10:48:16   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send dglas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
If I read this right, to this point, the resolution is non-binding, but there is intent to cause it to become binding on UN member states.

Should it become binding, I look forward to the Canadian government giving me a free lunch for the rest of my life.

--------------------------------------------------
- dglas (In the hell of 1000 unresolved subplots...)
--------------------------------------------------
The Presupposition of Intrinsic Evil
+ A Self-Justificatory Framework
= The "Heart of Darkness"
--------------------------------------------------
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filthy
SFN Die Hard

USA
14408 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  11:48:04   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send filthy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by dglas

If I read this right, to this point, the resolution is non-binding, but there is intent to cause it to become binding on UN member states.

Should it become binding, I look forward to the Canadian government giving me a free lunch for the rest of my life.
I too should be so honored; blasphemy is my best riff.

In practical terms, whether or not this stupidity passes, it will mean no more than a whore's kiss or a pope's blessing, neither of which means anything.




"What luck for rulers that men do not think." -- Adolf Hitler (1889 - 1945)

"If only we could impeach on the basis of criminal stupidity, 90% of the Rethuglicans and half of the Democrats would be thrown out of office." ~~ P.Z. Myres


"The default position of human nature is to punch the other guy in the face and take his stuff." ~~ Dude

Brother Boot Knife of Warm Humanitarianism,

and Crypto-Communist!

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Simon
SFN Regular

USA
1992 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  13:54:57   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Simon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Hittman

I'm sure the US will stomp on this, but even if they don't it wouldn't matter to us – we routinely ignore UN nonsense anyway.

Still, it's frightening that this is going on. Europe is already arresting people for speaking the truth about Islam. And there are ways to silence people in the states too, even without criminal law – civil lawsuits can easily bankrupt someone, even if they win, and the threat of them could have a chilling effect on free speech. I wouldn't be surprised to see CAIR and other groups going that route in the US.



It's not really about speaking the truth, it's for inciting racism or hatred.

You can still critisize Islam, especially its excess, but you should not do it in a racist way.
Essentiallym Europe is enforcing legally a weaker version of what political correctness enforces in the US.

Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
Carl Sagan - 1996
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  20:36:33   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Simon

It's not really about speaking the truth, it's for inciting racism or hatred.

You can still critisize Islam, especially its excess, but you should not do it in a racist way.
Essentiallym Europe is enforcing legally a weaker version of what political correctness enforces in the US.
I wish it were that way. But if this is adopted and enforced by UN member states, "defaming" prophets and faiths themselves will be illegal.

That is the point.

No longer would "Hate Islam, love the Muslim" be legal.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
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Simon
SFN Regular

USA
1992 Posts

Posted - 02/27/2009 :  21:23:14   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Simon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh yeah; the UN resolution could definitively serve as an excuse for that.


I was referring to Hittman comment about the current state in Europe.
Ambivalent as I am about the European restriction to free speech, they are not nearly as drastic as many Americans seem to understand them. In truth, outside of some extremist meetings (think the Klan, here) there are no real differences...

Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
Carl Sagan - 1996
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 02/28/2009 :  01:43:13   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Simon

Oh yeah; the UN resolution could definitively serve as an excuse for that.


I was referring to Hittman comment about the current state in Europe.
Ambivalent as I am about the European restriction to free speech, they are not nearly as drastic as many Americans seem to understand them. In truth, outside of some extremist meetings (think the Klan, here) there are no real differences...
Sorry about that. As you realized, I was thinking of the UN resolution. As for Europe's approach to hate speech, I have the beginnings of an opinion, but I'm not really up to speed.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
Edited by - HalfMooner on 02/28/2009 01:44:54
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Hittman
Skeptic Friend

134 Posts

Posted - 02/28/2009 :  10:44:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Hittman's Homepage Send Hittman a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It's not really about speaking the truth, it's for inciting racism or hatred.


Bullshit.

First off, Islam isn't a race.

Secondly, free speech includes inciting racism and hatred. We don't have to like such speech, but we must protect it.

http://www.reuters.com/article/entertainmentNews/idUSL1584799120080415

And there's nothing wrong with inciting hatred against those who deserve it. I despise Islam, and will be dammed if I'm going to keep quiet about that.

When a vampire Jehovah's Witness knocks on your door, don't invite him in. Blood Witness: http://bloodwitness.com

Get Smartenized® with the Quick Hitts blog: http://www.davehitt.com/blog2/index.phpBlog
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Simon
SFN Regular

USA
1992 Posts

Posted - 02/28/2009 :  11:01:18   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Simon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Obviously, free speech include hatred and racism. Obviously, a law restricting free speech will prevent some of these manifestation... That's the objective!


The thing is, how is complaining about the 'invasion of France by muslims' better (or worse) than complaining about the 'encroachment of Jews' 60 years ago?
Europe has just decided that the marginal part of Free speech that was lost was not worth the possible consequences...

Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
Carl Sagan - 1996
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HalfMooner
Dingaling

Philippines
15831 Posts

Posted - 02/28/2009 :  12:16:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send HalfMooner a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Simon

Obviously, free speech include hatred and racism. Obviously, a law restricting free speech will prevent some of these manifestation... That's the objective!
Aside from some of theocrats here, most of the political spectrum in the US would not accept such a "solution." Banning "hate speech" by law means giving bureaucrats the ultimate power to decide what speech is "hateful." I believe this would be, and is, deeply undemocratic.
The thing is, how is complaining about the 'invasion of France by muslims' better (or worse) than complaining about the 'encroachment of Jews' 60 years ago?
Europe has just decided that the marginal part of Free speech that was lost was not worth the possible consequences...
So Europe has decided. And now it can silence people, including atheists, if they "defame" religion.

In the US, antisemitism has not grown out of control due to our freedoms of expression. Groups promoting tolerance can an do use the same freedoms to effectively counter bigots. Free speech is often dirty and noisy, often cruel and obscene. But it works better, I think, than much more dangerous laws against hate speech.


Biology is just physics that has begun to smell bad.” —HalfMooner
Here's a link to Moonscape News, and one to its Archive.
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Simon
SFN Regular

USA
1992 Posts

Posted - 02/28/2009 :  12:31:32   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Simon a Private Message  Reply with Quote
No they can't.

The laws only apply in rare extreme circumstances. In fact, the vast majority of racists have no problem skirting it. Bardot is just not very bright (or she doesn't care, the fines are pocket change for her).

Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
Carl Sagan - 1996
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