Friday, January 16, 2015


I see that the Pope sez there are limits to freedom of speech especially when it insults or ridicules some-ones faith.   You can read the article here   

This comes against the backdrop of news that in dozens of countries around the world, most notably in Muslim-majority nations, governments there are turning to anti-blasphemy laws to aggressively punish alleged transgressions, particularly against Islam.

I think the Pope is on dangerous ground.   Although he refutes the claim that his statement may be seen in some quarters to somehow endorse the attack against Charlie Hebdo, nevertheless his comments will bring a degree of comfort to the likes of Derek Fox who argued exactly that.    Not that the French will give a toss anyway.   Anti clericalism is deeply ingrained as a tenant of French society.

A nation that is strong and comfortable in itself can stand satire.  Indeed, being able to stand satire is the hallmark of a developed society.  

But of even greater concern to me is the situation in North Korea.   There, the Il-Sung dynasty has been elevated to the level of a deity.  Citizens worship the deity.   Those who dare to criticise are rounded up and disappear into forced-labour camps never to be seen again.    The Pope has (inadvertently I'm sure) has added a certain legitimacy to what happens in that pariah state.   Certain that the North Korean government will play it as such.

I am reminded that it was not too long ago that the Catholic Church was burning at the stake those who sought to question the 'faith'.   El Papa's call to restrict the freedom of speech is a step backwards.


JC said...

The Pope is indeed on dangerous ground.. he just told a billion Catholics and by implication other religions they can respond with violence to insults to their religion.

Oh well, it'll give the Israelis nice cover for just about any reprisal against their enemies from now on.


Anonymous said...

Um, no he didn't.

He said: if you provoke a scorpion, don't be surprised if it stings you. He did not countenence violence, rather he noted the nature of the adversary we are dealing with.

I am reminded that it was not too long ago that the Anglican Church also burnt heretics and the evangelical settlers of the America's conducted witch hunts and drownings Not that any of that ad hoc has particular relevance today.

Chris P.

smttc said...

Pope Francis is a socialist moron. What he said about freedom of expression is a bloody disgrace.

If he, as a holder of faith is free to believe in his sky fairy, then I as an atheist have right to mock him as a delusional idiot without fear of repercussions. Same goes for him about my ethics.

Violence should not even be part of the equation.

Anonymous said...

"Violence should not even be part of the equation"

In some libertarian utopia perhaps. However, if you exercised your right to free speech by walking into the Delta Tavern in Ngaruawahia and told the patrons they are a bunch of layabout black cunts then you could in all probability expect a reaction that may include a smack in the head.

smttc said...


I am talking about Pope Francis's equation of freedom of speech as the world wide leader of the Catholic Church. Not some drunken uneducated idiot in a NZ provincial pub.

I think I am entitled to expect more leadership from a world leader albeit a South American socialist then some idiot in provincial NZ.

Anonymous said...

Yes, but he is just the leader of a superstitious cult, so you can't expect much rationality.

Adolf Fiinkensein said...


It appears your drunken provincial idiot is here, commenting without a nom de plume.

There is none so fanatical as a fundamentalist atheist.