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← [Updated 15th Jan]- Atheists have no right... - Atheists face Muslim-led censorship from UCL Union

[Updated 15th Jan]- Atheists have no right... - Atheists face Muslim-led censorship from UCL Union - Comments

Richard Dawkins's Avatar Comment 1 by Richard Dawkins

I've signed, adding the comment

Jesus and Mo cartoons are wonderfully funny and true. They could offend only those actively seeking to be offended – which says it all.

Richard

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:04:42 UTC | #906825

Absinthius's Avatar Comment 2 by Absinthius

Everytime I read accounts like this I can't help but feel that it is like explaining a secular viewpoint to a wall... It doesn't matter what you say or how you say it, the message will never get across.

Tiresome.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:06:06 UTC | #906827

TheChrissetti's Avatar Comment 3 by TheChrissetti

This comic shows a man called Jesus and a man called Mo drinking in a modern bar. Since the prophet Mohhammed lived in the 6th century they cannot ipso facto be the same person.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:24:12 UTC | #906830

skeelo's Avatar Comment 4 by skeelo

Signed.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:26:46 UTC | #906831

sunbeamforjeebus's Avatar Comment 5 by sunbeamforjeebus

It looks like they're both drinking coke! or is that banned as well?

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:27:05 UTC | #906833

Jeremy Nel's Avatar Comment 6 by Jeremy Nel

No one has the right not to be offended. It's high time people started standing up for their actual rights, which certainly include freedom of expression.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:32:07 UTC | #906834

Quetzalcoatlus's Avatar Comment 7 by Quetzalcoatlus

Comment 5 by sunbeamforjeebus :

It looks like they're both drinking coke! or is that banned as well?

I would rather think is Guiness!

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:39:39 UTC | #906836

Alex Gabriel's Avatar Comment 8 by Alex Gabriel

Huge thank you to whomever posted my blog here! Even huger thank you to everyone who's signed. We now have the support of the National Secular Society, and are set to be interviewed by the BBC and on Australian radio later today.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:45:42 UTC | #906837

Ian's Avatar Comment 9 by Ian

Petition signed.

Sorry my Muslim friends, but you get to speak freely and so do we. That's the deal.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:46:04 UTC | #906838

Vorlund's Avatar Comment 10 by Vorlund

Signed, I provided the following comment

Free speech is the cornerstone of democracy and freedom, only people who want to live in a cage and kiss the hand of their gaoler value censorship.

Its hard to grasp the mentality, no complainant could know what the myth of Christ or the paedophile brigand actually looked like.

What is more offensive to the intellect drinking alchol or claiming to fly around on Al Buraq? Perhaps Mo was actually pissed when he made that one up!

Here is a nice picture of Mo on Al Buraq:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Miraj_by_Sultan_Muhammad.jpg

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:46:24 UTC | #906839

C.Wood's Avatar Comment 11 by C.Wood

Signed. Damn these "oh it's so offensive" muslims. They better start getting used to it.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:47:40 UTC | #906840

Carlinlives's Avatar Comment 12 by Carlinlives

They are obviously meant to be drinking beer. It's a pub. Good! No need to deny the part of a JOKE (!) in order to appease these humorless retrogrades from the 13th century.

Also, the image the Muslims posted showing the little boy in the mosque is truly horrid in its implications. But as a person who is actually open to 17th and 18th century ideas of the Enlightenment, I would never demand that they remove it.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 10:51:14 UTC | #906841

RationalConclusion's Avatar Comment 13 by RationalConclusion

This is a classic case of believing that being offended by something entitles one to special rights and privileges. It doesn't.

I'm offended by the fact that people in this day and age still believe that a god exists, authored a particular book and that we're expected to respect it, however I don't seek to get the quran or bible banned, nor would I want to.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 11:13:20 UTC | #906848

AtheistEgbert's Avatar Comment 14 by AtheistEgbert

As long as the hate speech laws exist, freedom of speech or expression is now compromised in Britain. I would like to see a campaign for these laws to be removed, until then I see no reason for any hopeful progress.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 11:22:00 UTC | #906849

danconquer's Avatar Comment 15 by danconquer

From the O/P...

Today, they were sent a message by a student union offical. The message, I’m told, is confidential and so can’t be reproduced here

Rot. If someone sends you a letter or email you are at perfect liberty to disclose the contents, providing it doesn't contain commercially or medically sensitive data relating to a third party, matters relating to national security or otherwise breaches the Data Protection Act. Providing the names of complainants are removed there is no reason why the message from the student union cannot be reproduced.

Of course the student union official may feel it strengthens their hand to make such a claim, but it is important to call their bluff on this as well as the cartoon.

If it were true that student union officials were legally entitled to send out correspondence and prevent recipients from disclosing it to others then that would be an even more alarming threat to free speech than attempts to restrict J&M doodles!!

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 11:28:05 UTC | #906852

danconquer's Avatar Comment 16 by danconquer

Comment 14 by AtheistEgbert :

As long as the hate speech laws exist, freedom of speech or expression is now compromised in Britain. I would like to see a campaign for these laws to be removed...

And if you remove any laws restricting hate speech, with what law exactly do you propose offenders like this are dealt with?... http://youtu.be/Wh5kgJQ6-xU

Either you think the law is right to sanction such behaviour, in which case you do accept the need for some 'hate speech' restrictions... Or else you think that people should be at perfect liberty to inflict that sort of behaviour on their fellow citizens. In which case I'd be interested to hear how you think allowing such obnoxiousness (which has nothing to do with the free exchange of ideas) is possibly of any aid to the cause of 'hopeful progress' of which you speak.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 11:40:02 UTC | #906854

Virgin Mary's Avatar Comment 17 by Virgin Mary

For hundreds of years after his death muslims worldwide didn't seem to have a problem producing images of muhammed, so I want to know exactly which islamic teachings they refer to when they say it is forbidden to do so.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 11:53:43 UTC | #906857

existance's Avatar Comment 18 by existance

What is so wrong in applying the rule of scrutiny. If a person asks me to respect something, I believe I am justified in asking this same person the reasons why I should do so. If the answer is satisfactory (ie based on good evidence) then I will do so. If it is not, I won't. Example: the laws of the road. Society expects us to respect the laws of the road. The reason being that if we don't we put ourselves and others at risk of serious injury or death (and there are numerous cases which bear this fact out). Good reason, we judge that these laws are worthy of respect.

For what reason should I curtail my freedoms? Because our book is holy! Why? Because it was written/inspired by God! Can you prove this? No So I just have your word for it? Yes Ergo, I am under no good evidence based compulsion to respect your book. End of exercise.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 11:56:30 UTC | #906858

Schrodinger's Cat's Avatar Comment 19 by Schrodinger's Cat

I'd just like to comment, on behalf of the Beer Pump religion, that our members are deeply offended to be associated with apostates from the one true beer faith.....such as Jesus and Mo.

We shall be holding a mass drink in at the local pub, in protest.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:00:13 UTC | #906859

22052011's Avatar Comment 20 by 22052011

I may be wrong, but isn't it just one muslim sect that objects to images? As I understood it, there is friction between the sects owing to this difference. If that is so, the complainant is claiming to be a spokesman for all muslims when that isn't the case.

Secondly, and again from what I recall reading some time ago, the consumption of beer based alcoholic beverages is not banned - only wine and spirits.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:10:06 UTC | #906861

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 21 by SaganTheCat

signed

maybe we should take a leaf out of their holy book?

every time a joke at the expense of religion is published we tell the world they borught it upon themselves. every time an atrocity is carried out in the name of religion, humanists should turn up on news programmes stating "i am not condoning satire but comedians and cartoonists throughout the world will be in their studios preparing amusing commentry and there's nothing that can be done about it"

jihadists are always using their offence to justify thier holy tantrums, if they want cartoonists to stop "offending" them they have to stop "inspiring" cartoonists surely?

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:14:07 UTC | #906862

Premiseless's Avatar Comment 22 by Premiseless

Comment 16 by danconquer :

Comment 14 by AtheistEgbert :

As long as the hate speech laws exist, freedom of speech or expression is now compromised in Britain. I would like to see a campaign for these laws to be removed...

And if you remove any laws restricting hate speech, with what law exactly do you propose offenders like this are dealt with?... http://youtu.be/Wh5kgJQ6-xU

This is probably the most educational video of the day. It parcels all the issues inequality, the world over, foists upon a world seeking a cosmopolitan solution. To my mind, it also illustrates how the upper classes pitch the lower classes against each other in times of strife. People are becoming so aggravated by their own difficulties as to blame them directly on the most accessible out group competing for their potential betterment. It keeps the higher ups free to take more authority, serving their agenda, and rewarding them in kind, plus it heats up emotions around integration and any potential for unified social cohesion. In real terms this war is probably going on surreptitiously, especially the affluent classes. How often do you see people wanting to rise above their peers in some clandestine ritual performed as if a common good is being sought?

This would make an excellent educational video for all sorts of issues to be addressed amongst learners, young and old. I'm not sure many would take it on though due fear of controversy. We'd soon be into historical influences like: colonialism and rights to roam; who deserves to inherit affluence and the ways it was got; what aspects of this generation deserves to stand in its own stead absent consideration of historical influence; what restrictions ought be imposed on immigration considering the likely consequences of open borders etc, and whether it all is somehow being juggled to good effect to preserve the privilege of the higher ups anyhow? Are we, in the lower ranks, forever the slaves who fight it out amongst ourselves, as more and more of the masses, undeserving of our plight, are foisted upon dilluting the ever fewer resources amongst us? Is this new era one of divide and conquer as ruthless as any colonialism ever was? Where is it all headed and is this the fear that sets us against each other?

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:14:43 UTC | #906863

drumdaddy's Avatar Comment 23 by drumdaddy

All bartenders will be offended by this vile cartoon which portrays the two worst tippers in history. Put the bouncer on them!

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:28:41 UTC | #906865

SaganTheCat's Avatar Comment 24 by SaganTheCat

Comment 16 by danconquer :

Comment 14 by AtheistEgbert :

As long as the hate speech laws exist, freedom of speech or expression is now compromised in Britain. I would like to see a campaign for these laws to be removed...

And if you remove any laws restricting hate speech, with what law exactly do you propose offenders like this are dealt with?... http://youtu.be/Wh5kgJQ6-xU

Either you think the law is right to sanction such behaviour, in which case you do accept the need for some 'hate speech' restrictions... Or else you think that people should be at perfect liberty to inflict that sort of behaviour on their fellow citizens. In which case I'd be interested to hear how you think allowing such obnoxiousness (which has nothing to do with the free exchange of ideas) is possibly of any aid to the cause of 'hopeful progress' of which you speak.

tricky question but personally i lean to the side of allowing people to be as vocal as they like in their ignorance. this video shows up all that's needed, no need to make a martyr of her, the video is in public domain, we all know what she's like and that's how it should be.

one question i do have about "hate speech" however; why doesn't it cover people being rude about rival football teams? every weekend thousands of people chant things that could and do lead to violence but no one football club complains so it's not a crime, it's all part of the fun isn't it?

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:34:40 UTC | #906866

Nick LaRue's Avatar Comment 25 by Nick LaRue

I do think that your actions are actually completely intentioned to cause hurt to a lot of people and as such are utterly devoid of any humanity.

Emphasis mine.

This statement reminds so much of what Richard said in the God Delusion regarding how people tend to become 'hurt' by people being not respecting their religious dogma. I'm curious what explosion (excuse the pun) will happen when this reaches the Islamic world. Considering what the other cartoons did.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:36:12 UTC | #906867

MrAngryWeasel's Avatar Comment 26 by MrAngryWeasel

I signed with ...

I find churches, mosques, synagogues etc. offensive. Please remove them with immediate effect.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:44:12 UTC | #906868

jel's Avatar Comment 27 by jel

Petition signed. Just because some muslims get offended by people drawing mohamed and just because they don't want to draw him is no reason for the rest of the planet to have to abide by their rules.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:53:49 UTC | #906869

TR Jones's Avatar Comment 28 by TR Jones

I've signed the petition.

I'm one of the six full-time student officers at the Union. The request for removal of the images was made unilaterally by one of my coworkers without consultation with the rest of the officer group. Free speech is important everywhere, but one would hope people would be particularly aware of its neccesity at a place like UCL, which has such a fine tradition of freethinking.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:56:03 UTC | #906870

Dave H's Avatar Comment 29 by Dave H

Comment 5 by sunbeamforjeebus :

It looks like they're both drinking coke! or is that banned as well?

If you think that's an attempt at humour by exaggeration, think again. It's not an exaggeration. Coke is actually banned in Saudi Arabia for the sole reason that the Coca-Cola company does business with Israel. There is an official boycott in place, so in Saudi you can only get Pepsi. At least that was the situation when I was there in the 1980s. Maybe someone who's been there more recently can tell us if the ban is still in place.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 12:56:30 UTC | #906871

RW Millam's Avatar Comment 30 by RW Millam

No one has the right not to be offended.

Tue, 10 Jan 2012 13:17:32 UTC | #906874