The Dearborn Arab International Festival has been the site of many clashes between the police and Christian evangelists who go there to preach to the mostly Muslim crowd. This has resulted in several arrests that ended in acquittals and lawsuits that vindicated the protesters and forced the city to apologize. But in one case from …
Category Archive: Free Speech
May 18 2013
May 16 2013
There’s a bit of a controversy going on at Carnegie Mellon University, where two art students are being charged with misdemeanors for indecent exposure for going to an on-campus parade partly naked. Here’s how the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette describes the incident:
May 13 2013
After weeks of rioting from Islamic fundamentalist fascists and counter-protests from supporters of freedom, the Bangladeshi government has arrested three atheist bloggers for daring to “hurt the religious feelings of the people” by, you know, expressing their beliefs.
May 11 2013
The city of Dearborn has reached a settlement with a group of Christian missionaries who were arrested during the Arab International Festival in 2010. The settlement requires the city to issue an official apology for the arrests and to pay the legal fees of the plaintiffs. The American Freedom Law Center, an offshoot of the …
May 07 2013
Yeah, that’s a headline I never expected to write. But the ACLU has now filed suit on behalf of the Westboro Baptist Church against law enforcement officials in Iowa who have threatened to prosecute them under that state’s flag protection statute — a law that was already struck down by a federal court.
May 02 2013
Every once in a while, a religious right legal group gets one right. This is such a case. The Alliance Defending Freedom (formerly the Alliance Defense Fund) has filed suit on behalf of a student who was told he could not hand out anti-abortion fliers to his fellow students during lunch time.
Apr 18 2013
A pianist and composer has been convicted of blasphemy and inciting religious hatred for a series of tweets criticizing Islam by the government of Turkey, allegedly the most liberal of the Muslim-dominated countries. Fazil Say was charged and convicted after quoting Persian poet Omar Khayyám:
Apr 07 2013
Here is yet another tragic bit of fascism. The government in Bangladesh has arrested three atheist bloggers for blasphemy and “defaming” Islam, after weeks of demonstrations and riots by Muslim fundamentalists demanding their prosecution. But damn, this bit of framing irritates me:
Apr 03 2013
Not content with arresting atheists and Christians for blasphemy and insulting the incredibly delicate feelings of the Muslim majority, the Egyptian government has now issued an arrest warrant against a satirist who has dared to make fun of the government and Muslim clerics.
Mar 27 2013
The United Nations Human Rights Council last week adopted a resolution calling for freedom of religion and an end to religious violence and oppression. That’s the good news. The bad news is that a deal was apparently struck to keep out language that specifically spoke about the rights of atheists.
Mar 20 2013
A bunch of Republican lawmakers in the Idaho state legislature is demanding that the federal government ban all depictions or even mentions of premarital sex on television — to protect the children, of course, the usual excuse for authoritarian laws.
Mar 06 2013
Bravo to the ACLU for coming to the defense of a student in Connecticut who was told he could not wear an anti-gay t-shirt to school. The shirt was simply a rainbow with the universal symbol of the circle with a line through it over the top. Here’s the more disturbing part of the story:
Mar 04 2013
After the last meeting of CFI Michigan, a bunch of us went out to a restaurant as we always do, and sat and talked. In a conversation about some First Amendment issue, one guy trotted out the trite and false “you can’t shout fire in a crowded theater” analogy (which was not even remotely analogous …