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Legislating against Blasphemy

Posted on 27th April 2014

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I feel very sorry for Mr. Masud Ahmad, whose unfortunate story is described here.

His situation (accused of blasphemy) got me thinking about the inherent hypocrisy of legislating against blasphemy.

The Koran (Quran) teaches that Muslims must be tolerant and respectful to other religions. Given the enormous differences between various religions (the number and nature of their gods, and their basic principles and doctrines), it is inevitable that something that is a basic tenet of belief to people of one faith can be in contradiction to the beliefs of people of other faiths. How, then, can you be tolerant of the existence and beliefs of a faith, and punish statements that contradict your own beliefs as blasphemy.

To put this more simply: laws against blasphemy are against the teachings of the Koran. This is strange, since most of the countries with laws against blasphemy are Muslim.

Christianity and Judaism have no such rules about religious tolerance, although Christianity does have examples and parables showing such tolerance. Luckily the days of laws against blasphemy in Christian (and the one Judaic) countries are over. If that changes, then we will all have cause to be very worried.