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Category Archive: Free Speech

Nov 08 2013

Ireland May Take Giant Step Sideways on Blasphemy

There’s good news and bad news. The good news is that a constitutional convention in Ireland is recommending that the nation’s blasphemy laws be repealed; the bad news is that they want to replace them with a law prohibiting the “incitement of religious hatred.”

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Nov 07 2013

Gay Student Suspended for Ripping Leviticus Out of His Bible

A gay high school student in Birdville, Texas has been suspended for ripping pages out of his own Bible, which he brought with him to class. The American Humanist Association’s Appignani Legal Center is getting involved, sending a letter to the school demanding that the suspension be lifted.

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Nov 01 2013

Saudi Blogger Freed From Prison for Blasphemy

Saudi blogger Hamza Kashgari has been freed from prison after 20 months for the “crime” of uttering things on Twitter that offended the appallingly oversensitive Muslim clerics and totalitarian police in that country. Unfortunately, he may be at more risk free than he was in prison.

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Oct 16 2013

Two Students Suspended for Confederate Shirts

For some reason I’m not sure anyone would understand, two students from Tahoma High School in Maple Valley, Washington decided to show their “Southern pride” by wearing confederate flags to school (apparently around their necks). School officials suspended the students for violating the school’s dress code, which explicitly bans the wearing of such flags.

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Oct 07 2013

Arab League Wants International Blasphemy Prosections

As if the barbaric laws of many Middle Eastern countries that punish blasphemy weren’t already bad enough, the Arab League is drafting a new law that would allow its members to punish blasphemy even when it takes place outside their borders.

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Oct 01 2013

KKK to Rally at Gettysburg

The KKK has received a permit to hold a rally at the site of the battle of Gettysburg, which is now controlled by the National Park Service. The NPS said in a statement, “The National Park Service mission in preserving and protecting the historic resources at Gettysburg includes making them available to all Americans, even …

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Sep 24 2013

Danish Woman Guilty of Racism for Criticizing Islam

A Danish-Iranian artist named Firoozeh Bazrafkan has been found guilty of violating Denmark’s laws against the expression of racism for writing in the Jyllands-Posten (the same newspaper that published the infamous Muhammad cartoons) about misogyny in Islam. She faces a 5000 kroner fine or five days in prison.

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Sep 23 2013

Facebook ‘Likes’ Protected by First Amendment

One of the challenges of constitutional law is to apply broad principles like free speech in a constantly evolving technological reality. A federal appeals court has now ruled that clicking the “like” button on Facebook is a protected form of (in this case) political speech:

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Sep 17 2013

Appeals Court Upholds Right to Hand Out Literature

A three judge panel of the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals has upheld the right of a group of atheists to hand out copies of Bertrand Russell’s Why I Am Not a Christian at a Christian music festival in Minneapolis. The suit was filed against the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. You can read the …

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Sep 16 2013

Fischer: Terry Jones is Just Like Jesus

Pastor Terry Jones’ plan to burn 3000 copies of the Quran on 9/11 was thwarted when police pulled him over and arrested him for illegal conveying of fuel (he had soaked them in kerosene and was driving down the road with them and more kerosene in a truck). And Bryan Fischer says that makes Jones …

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Sep 13 2013

Suit Filed Over ‘Infidel’ License Plate

There was a mini-uproar recently when New Jersey refused to issue Dave Silverman a license plate that said “ATHEIST.” We’ve now got a similar situation in Michigan, but the state isn’t backing down from its refusal to issue a plate that said “INFIDEL” and the ACLU has filed a lawsuit. The press release:

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Sep 12 2013

Atheist Bangladeshi Bloggers Finally Indicted

Four atheist bloggers in Bangladesh who were arrested in April have finally been charged in court and their trials will begin in November. They are charged with writing “inflammatory blogs” that offended the religious feelings of Muslims in that country.

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Sep 06 2013

Another Blasphemy Prosecution in India

An Indian novelist has been arrested for blasphemy for apparently saying mean things about the Hindu god Ganesh, this hurting the incredibly tender feelings of authoritarians who think they have a right to punish anyone who dares offend them. Paul Fidalgo, filling in at the Friendly Atheist while Hemant goes off and gets married (congratulations, …

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Sep 06 2013

Dearborn Loses Another Free Speech Suit

You’d think the city of Dearborn would have learned by now that the First Amendment actually does apply to their city. They’ve now lost another lawsuit over their attempts to restrict the free speech rights of anti-Islam activists, this one over a demand that those holding a legal rally in their city be required to …

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Sep 03 2013

The Bravery of Bangladeshi Atheist Bloggers

Several atheist bloggers from Bangladesh are facing both blasphemy prosecutions and angry mobs of Muslim totalitarians who want to kill them. One of them, Asif Mohiuddin, is out on bail and in hiding, but he’s been exchanging email with Hemant Mehta and Austin Dacey. He told Hemant:

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