I wonder how long it will be before they come for us. I hope some of you will visit me in prison. More on the outrageous Australian religious vilification case verdict. From CNSNews.com, with thanks to Nicolei:
“The frightening thing is, so-called ‘hate-crime’ legislation is very much in vogue in Western democracies and will be coming soon to a Senate or Congress near you,” Jeff King of the Washington-based group International Christian Concern said in response to the ruling.
King said the case was “a classic example of the results of well-meant but terribly flawed legislation.”
Dr. Gordon Moyes, a prominent Australian theologian and state lawmaker, was one of many critics who said Higgins’ decision was essentially a ruling against freedom of speech.
“It is a basic human right to have the ability to decide whether and what religious faith one may adhere to,” Moyes said. “This also involves the critical examination and assessment of belief systems in general.”
Australian Christian Lobby head Jim Wallace also slammed Higgins’ finding, saying it presumably meant that Australians would be unable to quote from another religion’s texts and discuss them without legal repercussions.
People have always been free to publicly debate the Bible, but this decision seems to indicate that this same freedom does not extend to other religious texts,” Wallace said. “This decision means that a person can not hold a view of the Koran that is contrary to the ‘official view’ — however one determines that.”…
Critics pointed to what they saw as several ironies in the case.
One was the fact that the Pakistan-born Scot was one of the early victims of his homeland’s notorious blasphemy laws in the mid-1980s. He fled Pakistan under threat of prosecution for allegedly insulting the Islamic prophet, Mohammed, and made a new home in Australia, a Western democracy with a strong Christian heritage.
Another irony was seen when Scot during the tribunal hearing quoted references from the Koran and other texts about the inferior status of women in Islam, he was asked by the female lawyer acting for the ICV to give only the references, because reading the verses out aloud in the courtroom constituted vilification.
“How can it be vilifying to Muslims in the [court]room when I am just reading from the Koran?” Scot asked the tribunal — a question observers said basically could have applied to the entire case.
That episode suggests that the whole case was decided before it was tried.