Blasphemy law follow-up

Earlier this year I mentioned that Ireland’s anti-blasphemy law went into effect on January 1. After being made fun of on the internet and in other media for the past few months, the guy who proposed the law is now trying to get rid of it. Here is the justice minister Dermot Ahern from the report:

“There was a lot of nonsense about that blasphemy issue and people making me out to be a complete right-winger at the time,” he said. “There was an incredibly sophisticated campaign [against me], mainly on the internet. I was only doing my duty in relation to it, because clearly it is in the constitution. The attorney general said ‘there is this absolute, mandatory thing… it is an offence, punishable by law.”

I don’t remember anyone saying anything about the right wing. In fact, most of what I heard when it came to the politics of this was that was a part of a European trend of letting Muslims use existing, mostly secular government institutions in order to codify some of their religious beliefs into law, and that that was taking advantage of what might be too much political correctness in those countries. If anything, that itself is more of a right wing position.

And the whole reason we have elected officials in democratic countries is in order to interpret these laws and constitutional mandates. Obviously blasphemy laws are outdated. Anyone working in the government of a country like Ireland should be aware of that.

But it is nice that he called us sophisticated.

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