Hard Times Are Causing Blasphemy Laws To Be Used Again In Europe

When you hear the term “blasphemy law”, the countries that come to mind are probably Afghanistan, Iran, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia. But in reality, most European countries also have blasphemy laws. That rather large group includes Austria, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, and Greece. (Until recently, the UK and the Netherlands also had blasphemy laws.) Still, just because outdated laws are on the books, it doesn’t mean they get used. In most of the countries above, the last prosecutions for blasphemy were decades ago. Not in Greece though. In Greece, they had two of them in the past year. Spain also had one in 2012, Finland’s last prosecution was in 2008, and Germany’s in 2006.

The prosecutions in Germany and Finland were against people that made comments about Islam, probably in retaliation for terrorist attacks. The more recent ones in Spain and Greece were against people that made comments about Christianity. What’s interesting about this is that in both Spain and Greece, the unemployment rate is as high as it was during the Great Depression: 26%. Times are hard, and during hard times, people turn to religion, and then use religion as a “righteous” channel for their anger to form mobs against the infidels who are drawing God’s wrath and destroying the economy. During the Great Depression in Germany, Hitler won a lot of support in part by blaming the Jesus-killing Jews for the country’s problems. After Afghanistan’s devastating war with the Soviets, the Taliban also blamed the infidels, and instituted Sharia law. Yemen, another haven of religious tolerance, has an unemployment rate of 35%.

NPR has an article highlighting the two blasphemy cases in Greece:

  • One was against a 27-year old scientist who created a Facebook page making fun of a famous monk
  • The other was against the author and cast of a play, called Corpus Christi, which portrays Jesus and his disciples as gays in modern-day Texas

The scientist faces six months in jail, and the author, two years. In October of 2012, the Greek neo-fascist party Golden Dawn led a mob — which included priests — to a production of the blasphemous play, where they screamed about God’s love and threw forgiveness at the patrons. Just kidding: they screamed obscenities and threw rocks — because their hearts are filled with Jesus, not hate.

“Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone” — John 8:7, the verse that Golden Dawn forgot

via NPR

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