Today. In recognition of the day of publication of cartoons in Denmark that depicted Muhammed, September 30 has been named International Blasphemy Day.
Blasphemy Day is important. Not for offending people, but for celebrating the right to speak without fear that such an offense can land you in jail, or worse. Political speech often offends me, but the rough-and-tumble of open political debate is a good thing. When we coddle ideas, we allow bad ones to flourish. Religious speech is, and should be, protected in the same sense that political speech is. This includes religious speech that the listener disagrees with. A day to celebrate this idea? I like it.
Today is the day I remind you in rhyme
That blasphemy is a victimless crime.
More after the jump:
Calloo, Callay! It’s blasphemy day!
When we tug on the beard of the prophet;
When we say to the pope, “you’re a miserable dope;
That ex cathedra chair? Just get off it!”
We point out that god is an impotent sod–
If indeed we assume god exists–
Just a vanishing fable, forever unable
To step from mythology’s mists.
Here’s your chance to express what you think of this mess;
If you haven’t before, you should try it!
If you try just one bite, just one blaspheme, you might
Find a welcome new dish for your diet!
The first amendment means, to me,
The right to play at blasphemy;
The right to say “There is no God”
Without the threat of firing squad.
To speak, or sing, or draw, or write
And not be paralyzed with fright.
To mock Jehovah if I wish;
To point and laugh at Jesus fish;
And though the image strikes me weird,
To pluck Mohammed’s silly beard.
To say such things as I may choose
Regardless of opposing views.
About the pow’r of Holy Writ
I proudly do not give a shit.