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The best remedy for offensive speech is more speech...

Amazon explains why it sells an anti-jewish book of historical interest


Link Here 23rd January 2020
An anti-jewish book of historical interest has caused a bit of a stir in Australia after it was found to be available for sale on Amazon.

New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies CEO Vic Alhadeff wrote to Amazon Australia last week after seeing a number of controversial titles for sale, including one titled Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Alhadeff wrote:

By providing a platform for individuals to buy and sell such flawed and racist texts, Amazon is in fact contributing to the deeply concerning global increase in antisemitic incidents which we are currently witnessing.

Amazon has posted an explanation of why the book is for sale on the website:

Amazon does not endorse The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion. This book is one of the most infamous, and tragically influential, examples of racist propaganda ever written. It may be useful to some as a tool in the teaching of the history of anti-Semitism, but it's unquestionably propaganda.

Does Amazon sell this book? We do, along with millions of other titles. The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion is classified under controversial knowledge in our store, along with books about UFOs, demonic possession, and all manner of conspiracy theories. You can also find books in other sections of Amazon's online bookstore that analyze The Protocols' fraudulent origins and its tragic historical role in promoting anti-Semitism and Jewish persecution, including A Lie and a Libel: The History of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. As a bookseller, Amazon strongly believes that providing open access to written speech, no matter how hateful or ugly, is one of the most important things we do. And because we think the best remedy for offensive speech is more speech, we also make available to readers the ability to make their own voices heard and express their views about this and all our titles in reviews and ratings.

 

 

An example for the religious world...

Blasphemy has been abolished in Ireland


Link Here18th January 2020
Full story: Blasphemy in Ireland...Irish politicians enact blasphemy law
Irish Justice minister Charlie Flanagan has announced the commencement of the Blasphemy (Abolition of Offences and Related Matters) Act 2019 .

The act was passed by both Houses of the Oireachtas before the Christmas recess, and was signed by the President on 21st December. The Minister said:

This act abolishes the offence of blasphemy, and reflects the outcome of last year's referendum in which the people approved removing the Constitutional requirement that blasphemy be a criminal offence, by a majority in each of the 40 constituencies, and by 64.85% of voters nationally.

He said that the very notion of criminalising blasphemy, with the risk of a chilling effect on free expression and public debate, has no place in the Constitution or the laws of a modern republic. He said the right to express differing viewpoints in a forthright and critical manner is a right to be cherished and upheld. He added:

It may seem abstract to devote time to abolishing an offence which has not been prosecuted in practice. But it must be remembered that a number of countries still actively prosecute charges of blasphemy. Imprisonment

Those charges can carry severe penalties, including terms of imprisonment, brutal physical punishments, and even the death penalty. They have also been applied in a discriminatory manner to justify the persecution of dissidents, the socially excluded, or religious minorities.

Such countries justify those regimes by referring to the continuance of blasphemy as a criminal offence in Ireland. That has always been a very disturbing reality. This act not only addresses the situation, but ensures that Ireland should never again be cited as an exemplar of such outdated concepts. Public showing

The act also amends the Censorship of Films Acts, to remove blasphemous content as a ground for refusing or restricting the public showing, or advertising of, a film.

 

 

Commented: Still Charlie...

France marks the murderous censorship of Charlie Hebdo magazine 5 years ago and plans to open a centre dedicated to satirical cartoons


Link Here12th January 2020
Full story: Charlie Hebdo...Censored by terrorists
France is marking the fifth anniversary of a terrorist attack on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo with street ceremonies and social media tributes.

On 7 January 2015, militant Islamists shot dead 11 people in the magazine's Paris office, before murdering a policeman outside.

On Tuesday, former French President François Hollande, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo and Justice Minister Nicole Belloubet were among those to pay their respects to the victims outside Charlie Hebdo's former offices in the capital. Several tributes took place, including readings of commemorative plaques, wreath-laying and a minute's silence.

The weekly magazine, which published a special issue marking the anniversary with contributions from the victims' relatives, tweeted:

It was five years ago, it was a century ago, it was yesterday. We do not forget and we will always continue: to speak, to write, to draw.

Update: France plans centre dedicated to satirical cartoons

10th January 2020. See article from theartnewspaper.com

 France is planning to create a "house of press cartoons and satirical cartoons", according to a statement issued by the culture ministry. The French culture minister Franck Riester said the project was "conceived and wanted" by Georges Wolinski--one of five caricaturists killed in the 2015 attacks. The centre's aim is to create "a place for meetings" to enable the creation and promotion of satirical cartoons and support their creators.

The statement refers to press cartoons as "a witness of our time, our freedom and the dangers that threaten us" and "a powerful form of expression and creativity to the service of the independence of the media and therefore of the vitality of our democracies".

Riester has tasked Vincent Monadé, currently head of the Centre National du Livre (the National Centre of the Book), to present proposals for the venue by the end of May.

Offsite Comment: Je suis Charlie

12th January 2020. See article from spiked-online.com by Brendan O"Neill

Today is the fifth anniversary of the massacre at Charlie Hebdo. Five years since one of the darkest days in the modern history of the French Republic, when 10 journalists and cartoonists, as well as a maintenance worker and a police officer, were massacred by two Islamist gunmen for the crime of blaspheming against Muhammad.

 See article from spiked-online.com

 

 

Updated: Not a prayer's chance of forgiving them their trespasses then...

Brazilian judge orders injunction to ban gay Jesus comedy on Netflix but this has now been overturned


Link Here 10th January 2020
Full story: Netflix Censorship...Streaming TV to a variety of censorship regimes
The First Temptation of Christ (A Primeira Tentação de Cristo) is a 2019 Brazil comedy short film by Rodrigo Van Der Put.
Starring Evelyn Castro, Gregório Duvivier and Fábio Porchat. IMDb

Jesus, who's hitting the big 3-0, brings a surprise guest to meet the family.

A judge in Brazil has ruled that a film depicting Jesus as gay must be removed from the TV streaming service Netflix.

The film, The First Temptation of Christ, infuriated some Christians in the country.Two million people signed a petition calling for it to be banned, and the production company was attacked with Molotov cocktails last month.

In the ruling against Netflix, the judge said: The right to freedom of expression... is not absolute.

The ban is a temporary injunction whilst a final decision is made by a higher court.

Update: Injunction overturned

10th January 2020. See article from bbc.com

Brazil's Supreme Court has overturned a ruling that TV streaming service Netflix must remove a film depicting Jesus as gay.

The film, The First Temptation of Christ, infuriated fervent Christians in the country. But Supreme Court president Dias Toffoli said on Thursday that Netflix should be allowed to continue streaming the show, stating that freedom of speech was fundamental in a democracy. The judge said:

One cannot suppose that a humorous satire has the ability to weaken the values of the Christian faith, whose existence is traced back more than two thousand years, and which is the belief of the majority of Brazilian citizens.

 

 

Updated: The First Temptation of Christ, out on Christmas Day...

A Brazilian comedy featuring a gay Jesus causes 'outrage' when it is shown on Netflix


Link Here27th December 2019
The First Temptation of Christ (A Primeira Tentação de Cristo) is a 2019 Brazil comedy short film by Rodrigo Van Der Put.
Starring Evelyn Castro, Gregório Duvivier and Fábio Porchat. IMDb

Jesus, who's hitting the big 3-0, brings a surprise guest to meet the family.

Porta dos Fundos is Brazilian comedy group with a huge following in Brazil. Their YouTube channel has more than 16 million subscribers, and religion is often a butt of their humour.

But their latest offering, a Netflix special Christmas film entitled The First Temptation of Christ, has unleashed torrents of outrage as as it depicts a gay Jesus bringing his boyfriend home to meet Mary and Joseph.

According to PinkNews, more than 1.3 million people have signed a petition against the Christmas parody, with some signatories claiming the creators to be demons and heretics.

 

Update: I thought Jesus taught 'love you neighbour', not 'firebomb him'

27th December 2019. See article from bbc.com

Police are investigating a fire-bomb attack on the Rio de Janeiro office of a production company behind a controversial Christmas special aired on streaming service Netflix.

The episode, by comedy group Porta dos Fundos, depicts a gay Jesus bringing a boyfriend home to meet his family.

More than 2.3m people have signed an online petition to remove the film.

A video circulating online appears to show a far-right religious group claiming responsibility for the attack. In it, a group wearing ski masks and identifying itself as the Popular Nationalist Insurgency Command of the Large Brazilian Integralist Family, appear to attack the production company offices with Molotov cocktails. A statement, read with a digitally disguised voice, criticises Netflix and describes the film as blasphemous.

 

 

Offsite Article: Outrageous art...


Link Here21st December 2019
An anonymous artist has been generating a little outrage in Rome and London See article from patheos.com

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