Attacks on ‘blasphemers’ are threatening free speech in many countries. Christians and atheists are under fire in Egypt. Clampdowns on satire are just one of many problems facing Greece. And of course keeping up with the various attempts by the OIC to use the UN to enforce blasphemy rulings can feel a bit like playing whack-a-mole. The topic’s been up and down and up and down and now up again.
The Qatari Justice Minister is behind the latest initiative, a drive to creative an international law against blasphemy ‘with the help of the United Nations’:
“In recent years, there have been insults and offenses against religion through drawings, films and other means. Thus we have taken the initiative to create a legislative instrument on an international level to protect the sacredness of all religions. The draft will be presented at the United Nations,” declared Qatari Justice Minister Hassan bin Abdullah al-Ghanem.
The Qatari minister is collaborating with the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) on making religious offense considered a crime abroad as well as at home.
“Offenses to religion shake the foundations of stability in the world and put world peace at risk,” said Yousuf Qaradawi, president of IUMS. Every religion has its sacred elements. In the case of Islam, the Koran and the Prophet Mohammed are sacred, and any attack automatically sparks undesirable consequences, Qaradawi explained. “It is impossible to contain the spontaneous rage of a mass insulted by an offense to their religion,” Qaradawi added.
Of course, even though Qaradawi talks about groups of people as though they were a combustion engine, any attack does not automatically spark undesirable consequences. And, although I want to ban as little as possible, here’s an example of something which seems a much more valid catalyst for rage than the (stupid and offensive) Innocence of Muslims.
Hat Tip: Adrian Morgan