In Canada, Attorney Murphy brought a case against Mr. Ernest-Victor Slerry of Toronto, accused of writing the following lines:
The God of the Bible is portrayed as someone who walks in the Garden of Eden, talks to a woman, curses a snake, sews skins to make clothing, prefers the taste of roasted chops to the smell of boiled cabbage, sits in a burning bush, comes out from behind rocks, an old rascal that Moses had a hard time calming, who, in fits of rage, massacred hundreds of thousands of his chosen people, and who would have killed them all if cunning Moses hadn’t reminded him: What will the Egyptians say?
Obviously, these things are said without delicacy. But in the end, if the form is lacking, the substance is accurate. Not a word that cannot be supported by a reference. Long before the Christian era, the “anthropomorphisms” of the Bible shocked the Jews.
Under the blasphemy law, Mr. E.-V. Slerry was sentenced to two months in prison. The judge declared, “Our conception of God is an integral part of our national life. We view the Bible as the basis for all good laws in our country. It is the dearest and most precious book in the world to us.”
Couchoud, Paul Louis. Théophile ou L’étudiant des religions. Paris: André Delpeuch, 1928. p. 174 – ChatGPT translation
This is a follow up post to Atheist Group Breaks Blasphemy Law
There is an online interview with journalist Elaine Edwards from The Irish Times discussing the political and legal background to the new blasphemy laws in Ireland, and the response of Atheist Ireland.
One interesting detail is the the Minister of Justice has had the law framed in a way to make any prosecutions unlikely to succeed.
It’s about 8 minutes long and you need either Real Player or Windows Media Player.
Check the Atheist Ireland website for their list of 25 delicious blasphemous quotations from Jesus, Richard Dawkins, et al.
Atheist Ireland, a group representing atheists in the Irish Republic, has defied a new blasphemy law by publishing a series of quotes by writers Mark Twain and Salman Rushdie, Jesus Christ, the Prophet Mohammed and Pope Benedict.
Check out more details on the BBC news site: Irish Atheists Challenge Blasphemy Law.
Atheists Ireland says:
From today, 1 January 2010, the new Irish blasphemy law becomes operational, and we begin our campaign to have it repealed. Blasphemy is now a crime punishable by a €25,000 fine.
In response, we have published a list of 25 blasphemous quotes, which have previously been published by or uttered by or attributed to Jesus Christ, Muhammad, Mark Twain, . . . . . Rev Ian Paisley, . . . . Pope Benedict XVI, . . . . .