Something rotten: Why secular Denmark is using a sledgehammer to protect the sacred

Feb 28, 2017

by ERASMUS

DENMARK is one of the least religious countries in the world; a poll has found that barely one in five Danes considers faith to be a really important factor in daily life. Yet as of this week, it looks as though Denmark may be one of the very few countries in the Western world where a blasphemy law is in active use.

The country’s state prosecution service has emphatically defended its decision to bring blasphemy charges (and the suggestion of a fine, not a prison term) against a 42-year-old man who burned a copy of the Koran in his garden and then posted a video of the deed on an anti-Islamic Facebook group. “Such an act may be a violation of the blasphemy section of the Criminal Code which concerns public mockery or scorn with reference to a religion,” a prosecutor said.

What lies behind this decision? It’s easy to think of reasons why the authorities in any Western country would view the public burning of Islam’s holy text as something against the public interest, an act to be discouraged in any possible way. When Pastor Terry Jones, a Florida-based preacher, threatened to to stage a Koran-burning spectacular, he was told by bigwigs like the then defence secretary, Robert Gates, and David Petraeus, perhaps America’s best-known general, that such an act would put many lives, including those of American soldiers, in danger. But utimately it proved impossible to prevent the pastor from carrying out his incendiary acts, given that country’s robust tradition of freedom of religious and anti-religious expression.

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10 comments on “Something rotten: Why secular Denmark is using a sledgehammer to protect the sacred

  • Western lasphemy laws certainly should be repealed, especially as a signal to Islamic countries. But there is much to be said for defamation-against-groups laws that would parallel existing defamation-against-individuals laws. Advocates of free speech too often talk as if speech could rationally be absolutely free, ignoring the laws and rules forbidding attempted extortion, counterfeiting, plagiarism, etc., etc.



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  • 2
    Robert Firth says:

    There is an arabic word that describes this situation: as-silm, “surrender”. This is the act of accepting the superiority of Islam to ones own faith or beliefs, and acting accordingly.

    We see this all across Western Europe. When four moslem children enroll in a school, suddenly everyione has to eat halal food. When four moslems work in a factory, suddenly all work has to stop for prayers. When a moslem works at a supermarket checkout, suddenly that checkout will not accept alcohol in a shopping cart.

    And, even worse, when a suburb acquires a moslem majority, the law is no longer enforced and the police no longer patrol. As can be seen in Paris, Malmo, and elsewhere.

    Quite simply, this is moral cowardice. And the end of this road is increasingly clear: the surrender of all of Western civilisation to barbarism. Verily, whom the gods would destroy, they first make mad.



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  • Advocates of free speech too often talk as if speech could rationally be absolutely free, ignoring the laws and rules forbidding attempted extortion, counterfeiting, plagiarism, etc., etc.

    This is pretty much a strawman. Laws relating to illegal activities are in place and are not subverted by appeals to free speech.

    Hate speech legislation is too often regressive, protecting too often the illiberal and the hateful.

    A better world is created by first teaching our children never to take offence, before we teach them never to give it.

    There is an epidemic among the young of being triggered, of new sensitivities, and of seeking to avoid dealing directly with the world. Seeking out safe spaces rather than confronting the bully and the hateful is a dereliction of their/our duty as the moral authors on duty.

    As we drain our world of harms and have our sensitivities turned up to eleven, we will lose all resilience to deal with the truly mad bad and dangerous.

    The ultimate safe space carried around by the emburka’d women lest she trigger unwholesome thoughts in men, is a catastrophic dereliction of moral duty. Their men will ever remain un-trained and un-responsible for their own behaviours in this regard.

    Be braver to be more moral and make the world better.



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  • These antiquated laws should have been binned years ago!

    I find if hard to believe that every copy of the Koran ever produced, is still in existence, so lots them must have been binned, composted, or burnt over the years with no fuss whatever!



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  • Robert Firth: Quite simply, this is moral cowardice. And the end of this road is increasingly clear: the surrender of all of Western civilisation to barbarism.

    I agree. Again there is respect for supernatural. I would like so much if non-believers would stop being so considerate towards religious. They are not getting the same respect back.

    From article: Such an act may be a violation of the blasphemy
    section of the
    Criminal Code which concerns public mockery or scorn with reference to
    a religion

    Is there a law which concerns mocking of science, humanism, positive civilisation progress… ? I mean public mockery or scorn of science and common sense by religious beliefs is also an insult (at least) and it is going on every day in public by religious people. What about their insults to common sense and civilisation progress? Religious do not have to respect that. Right?



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  • UK Food Standards Agency figures from 2011 suggest 84% of cattle, 81% of sheep and 88% of chickens slaughtered for halal meat were stunned before they died. Supermarkets selling halal products say they stun all animals before they are slaughtered.

    There is no potential problem here. Insisting on ethical Halal is no imposition unless the prayers said over it is your issue.

    Most corner shops in the UK (in city suburbs anyway) have Muslim owners and sell pork products and alcohol.

    And the end of this road is increasingly clear: the surrender of all of Western civilisation to barbarism.

    FFS…



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  • We see this all across Western Europe. When four moslem children
    enroll in a school, suddenly everyione has to eat halal food. When
    four moslems work in a factory, suddenly all work has to stop for
    prayers. When a moslem works at a supermarket checkout, suddenly that
    checkout will not accept alcohol in a shopping cart. And, even worse,
    when a suburb acquires a moslem majority, the law is no longer
    enforced and the police no longer patrol. As can be seen in Paris,
    Malmo, and elsewhere.

    Good heavens, what a load of tosh. Might I suggest not getting all your news from Breitbart? I am now off to find something to uncurl my toes.



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  • Good heavens, what a load of tosh. Might I suggest not getting all your news from Breitbart? I am now off to find something to uncurl my toes.”

    I read what you (Marco) wrote and what Robert Firth wrote. I did a quick search. I found an article on telegraph co uk. By Robert Mendick, Chief Reporter. Date 10:00PM GMT 21 Dec 2013. TITLE = Muslim staff at Marks & Spencer can refuse to sell alcohol and pork.

    What is tosh? I did a search. It says foolish nonsense.

    The only fool I see is you, who doesn’t know what is in store for the future.

    “Asda said it would not deploy Muslims on tills who objected to handling alcohol, while Morrisons, which is based in Bradford where there is a large Muslim community, said it had widespread experience of dealing with the issue and would “respect and work around anyone’s wishes not to handle specific products for religious or cultural reasons”. ”

    It says, LARGE MUSLIM COMMUNITY. That is the future.



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  • vrej #8
    Mar 25, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    Morrisons, which is based in Bradford where there is a large Muslim community, said it had widespread experience of dealing with the issue and would “respect and work around anyone’s wishes not to handle specific products for religious or cultural reasons”. ”

    If some shop workers in the Bradford branch, prefer shelf-stacking or cleaning to serving the public, and their employers are happy with that, – why not?

    It says, LARGE MUSLIM COMMUNITY. That is the future.

    Bradford has had a large Muslim community for decades! –
    It is now a little larger, as is the “No-Religion” group!

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Demography_of_Bradford#Ethnicity

    That’s why the comedians back in the 1960s, used to refer to it as “The capital of the Punjab” – just as they referred to Liverpool as “The capital of Ireland”! 🙂

    However, if we look at the analysis of languages spoken, that indicates integration of the Punjabi community.



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  • Britain is also a not very religious country, but that does not stop the State Church of England scrounging money from the government and despite having vast wealth, trying to have other people pay for the up-keep of its cathedrals!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-39556634

    Some cathedrals are facing possible closure because of problems with finance and management, according to the Church of England.

    A report said their financial independence posed “serious risks to the reputation of the entire Church”.

    Despite increasing numbers of visitors, some cathedrals have been hit by serious financial problems.

    A new working group will consider whether or not cathedrals should continue to raise their own funds.

    Each of England’s 42 Anglican diocesan cathedrals are run by a dean and chapter, independently of their diocese or the Church of England.

    Dr Allister published a report in January which said: “The high degree of independence currently enjoyed by cathedrals poses serious risks to the reputation of the whole Church, and thus to our effectiveness in mission.

    “A closer working relationship of cathedrals with their bishop and diocese would be of benefit to all, both practically and spiritually.”

    Tourism, government grants and [state] lottery money are major sources of revenue for cathedrals.

    The Very Rev Faull, who is the dean of York Minster, said cathedrals that attracted a lot of tourists were better off.

    “Those that are not those honeypots realise that they have a more limited repertoire in terms of encouraging people to support financially.”

    She said cathedrals that asked for a voluntary donation rather than an admission fee were worse off, but rejected the idea of a compulsory entrance fee at all cathedrals, calling it “simply not feasible for all cathedrals”.

    She did not rule out the prospect of some cathedral closures, saying: “”If a cathedral finds itself in problems, it undermines the whole ministry of the Church in that diocese.

    The chapter of Guildford Cathedral has reportedly considered closing it, following the rejection of a plan by local councillors to build housing to raise money.

    The dean of York also raised the prospect of local councils giving more money to cathedrals.

    Local councils are having to close many of their own departments – such as support services and libraries – due to government cuts in budgets. The last thing they should be doing is diverting scarce resources into supporting declining religious organisations!



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