This site is not maintained. Click here for the new website of Richard Dawkins.

But you cannot shut us up

It was a good day for free expression. Hundreds turned up in the freezing cold in London to defend it and there were solidarity rallies and actions in various parts of the world. A report will follow soon, including videos on Youtube and photos, but in the meanwhile you can hear the brilliant speakers on the Pod Delusion.

To start with, here’s the Jesus and Mo author’s statement for the rally. More speeches will follow.

When was the last time you rushed into a place of worship while a service was taking place, and told the preacher to shut up? My guess is that you have never done this while sober.

Because you know that it is impolite to butt in to other people’s conversations and demand that they stop talking.

And yet that is what would-be censors are always trying to do. At St Mary’s College, on other people’s Facebook pages, at literature festivals, and on the website of Jesus and Mo, they have butted in with their rude – and sometimes menacing – demands for silence.

It is the height of bad manners. Those of us who understand the value of free expression wouldn’t dream of being so discourteous.

In fact, far from telling believers to shut up, we WANT them to keep talking. Because that is how their ideas are exposed to light and – inevitably – laughter.

In the end, there is only one solution available to those who don’t want their beliefs to be laughed at: stop believing funny things.

So this is my message to the religious censors: we do not merely ASK that you show us the same courtesy that we show you. We INSIST on it.

We are going to be criticizing your scriptures, lampooning your prophets, and laughing at your deeply held beliefs for many years to come. You can complain about us. You can ignore us. Or you can respond in kind with ridicule and laughter of your own.

But you cannot shut us up.

Thank you to everyone here for helping to get that message across.

You can also view and comment on the original article on Maryam Namazie's blog by clicking here.

TAGGED: CAMPAIGNS, FREE SPEECH


RELATED CONTENT

Nature journal wins libel case,...

Liat Clark - Wired.co.uk Comments

A three-year long libel case brought against a science journal has been dismissed, in a move that highlights the need for a public interest clause in UK defamation law to protect the free press.

Online Support Grows for Indonesia’s...

Enricko Lukman - Tech in Asia Comments

Various groups offering support to Alexander Aan, who was jailed for writing "God does not exist" on Facebook

Spanish artist faces prison over 'how...

Ben Child - Guardian 37 Comments

Javier Krahe prosecuted for 'offending religious feelings' after 1978 short film was broadcast on Spanish TV

Jesus and Mo on Ridicule

Author - JesusandMo.net 15 Comments


Jesus and Mo on Ridicule

MORE

MORE BY MARYAM NAMAZIE/AUTHOR OF JESUS & MO

MORE

Comments

Comment RSS Feed

Please sign in or register to comment