De omnibus dubitandum
30 Sep 2009
Today, September 30, is International Blasphemy Day. Blasphemy is, as you know, the ultimate victimless crime. It’s an imaginary offense against an imaginary being that somehow makes delusional people so upset they’re ready to kill over it.
Blasphemy is an archaic and medieval concept that has no place in a modern, free society. Blasphemy is often used by religious fanatics as an excuse to silence criticism and stifle open debate.
“The objective of International Blasphemy Day is to open up all religious beliefs to the same level of free inquiry, discussion and criticism to which all other areas of academic interest are subjected.
Why September 30? The last day in September is the anniversary of the original publication of Danish cartoons in 2005 depicting the prophet Muhammad’s face. Any visual depiction of Muhammad is considered a grave offence under Islamic law. The fury which arose within the Islamic community following this publication led to massive riots, attacks on foreign embassies and deaths.
The newspapers which chose to publish these cartoons were in many cases blamed for the outpouring of violence which followed. This unfortunate yet inevitable sequence of events clearly demonstrated a dangerous misconception that had piggy-backed into the 21st century on the shoulders of ignorance, fear and apathy, that all religious beliefs and ideas deserve respect and are beyond criticism or satire.
International Blasphemy Day is a movement, not just a day, to remind the world that religion should never again be beyond open and honest discussion or reproach. Our future depends on it.”
So go forth and celebrate Blasphemy Day. Taking the Lord’s name in vain is optional, but encouraged.