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Obey No1kinobe


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Should blasphemy be outlawed by the UN?

Some Islamic countries are pushing for ''international legal regulations against attacks on what people deem sacred''


Essentially this is making protection from blasphemy a human right. Making it a right not to be offended by someone critiquing or mocking your religious views.

Essentially, if you hold genital mutilation of children sacred or any other harmful religious belief sacred it is proposed to make it illegal to condemn this.

I hope Australia does not sign this.

What a clash of values. What a clash of civilisations. Western enlightenment values versus medieval religion.

I suggest most human rights are human constructs that are granted rather than intrinsic. They aim t improve the human condition. Also none are absolute. The most difficult ethical issues often involve a clash of rights or values. Freedom of religion to lock up women versus equal rights and freedom of movement. Freedom of speech versus slander and liable.

I support individual freedom of religion up to the point it harms other people or when people try and force their religious taboos on others who do not believe. If there is a secular argument in parallel fair enough.

I suggest the world is better off allowing blasphemy, allowing religion and theocracies to be criticised or mocked. While I don't see the point of mindless provocative put downs, religion should not be off limits.

Perhaps the trickiest aspect is where the comments have a rascist aspect to them.

Isn't it interesting how freedom from religious insult is now being positioned by some alongside the right to life, freedom from slavery (what if slavery is sanctioned by your religion?), freedom from torture, equality before the law.

Freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief (not in some religions),

Freedom of opinion and expression - not if this gets up.

What do you think


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    Oct 2 2012: This is not a matter of opinions or popular vote. it is unfortunate that the notion of individual rights is so badly understood and therefore so poorly defended. Rights are not a matter of public opinion.

    The right to free speech derives its meaning from the fundamental right to life--inextricably. The universal human right to life implies that we have the right to act in furtherance of our survival, unhindered by anyone else's coercion. It means we are owners of our lives and can choose to dispose of ourselves or work towards survival and flourishing.

    Since humans live in a material world, all actions taken to further our survival is taken materially in this actual world. Which means, we have the right to free actions that fall within the purview of our pursuit of the right to life (realize that all humans have this, hence, encroaching on another person's range of free actions is a violation of that person's rights).

    This is the right to liberty -- the right to freely pursue actions.

    Free speech is a constituent of free actions or free expressions. It can be as basic to our survival as saying: "I need food, I am starving" to as distant from survival and closer to intellectual self-actualization and flourishing as saying: "I don't think Muhammad was a good man; in fact, he was a pedophile to have consummated a marriage with a 9 yr old."

    Now, since only *actions* can carry the weight of force, not speech, all speech is necessarily protected by the right to liberty in the service of right to life--so long as this speech-act does not violate the rights to life, liberty, and property of someone else.

    (Crying fire in a theater is a violation of the property rights of the theater owner, a misuse of his premises in a way that jeopardizes his property, his wealth, and his earning potential--not to mention the right to life and liberty of the movie-goers.)

    There's much more to this theory of universal human rights from natural law. Please read Ayn Rand.
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      Oct 3 2012: Hi Jerry, thanks for the well thought out comment.

      I agree we should not overreact and undermine a right just because some are offended and react violently.

      However, I suggest human rights are human constructs and are not absolute and we need to be able to argue the benefits of these and where the limits are and why.

      I suggest considering what any number gods divinely command without secular benefits as part of the mix is very dangerous

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