Why We MUST Unite Against “Blasphemy Laws”

I’ve talked briefly about blasphemy before; but rarely do I come across a good, current, example of how blasphemy laws can negatively affect people. So today when I saw the headline, “Singer Charged Over ‘Cooking Christ’ Spoof“, I thought that this would turn out to be a misleading headline about somebody who committed an actual crime and a bad job of reporting.

Then I noticed the sub-headline: “A popular Spanish singer has been charged with blasphemy for a satirical skit he filmed in 1978 in which he “cooks” a crucifix.” Maybe there was something to this after all; but the timing seems a bit odd.

Musician Javier Krahe faces a fine of £159,000 after stills from the spoof cookery show, which involved baking an effigy of Christ for three days, were shown on television in 2004 during an interview with the star.

Despite the length of time since both the film was made and the interview was aired, Mr Krahe faces prosecution for offending the feelings of a religious group, a little-known article included in the Spanish Penal Code.

Ok, so it’s a comedy skit filmed in 1978…
And clips of it were shown in 2004…
And he’s being charged in 2010?

WOW! Is it just me, or is this just in one more example of the insanity of religion that they prosecute people years, or even decades after creating COMEDY!!! What kind of world do we live in where satire is not protected from ignorant bullies?

While there has been much debate about the use of a specific Blasphemy Day, both for and against; I think it’s fair to say that any rational, free-thinking person would support the right of a satirical work to take a jab at any topic, even religion.

Luckily, there are those in Spain who support Krahe.

The hard line taken against the tongue-in-cheek video has divided opinion in Spain, with many progressive groups calling for the freedom of speech law to be altered to include freedom to blaspheme.

But this “divided opinion” is not good enough. ALL people need to stand up for the most basic of rights. If we are not free to think as we wish and speak our minds, then we are not free. We must protect not only that speech we agree with, but even more importantly we must fight EQUALLY hard for the rights of those we disagree with to speak their minds as well.

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About Rodibidably

Jeff Randall is a frequent volunteer for free-thought organizations, including the Center For Inquiry – DC. Having been blogging since January 2008, he decided that a community of bloggers would be an interesting new experience (or at the very least a fun way to annoy his friends into reading his posts more frequently). Since finding out about about the existence of, and then joining, the atheist/skeptic community in 2007 he has been committed to community activism, critical thinking in all aspects of life, science, reason, and a fostering a secular society.
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